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Sports, Volume 10, Issue 12 (December 2022) – 25 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Many individuals ranging from recreational lifters to competitive powerlifters aim to improve their BP strength. Therefore, a better understanding of the determinants of BP strength may have important practical implications. Many factors determine BP performance, yet their relative importance remains to be explored. The purpose of this study was to improve our understanding of the relative contributions of biomechanical, anthropometric, and psychological factors in explaining maximal BP strength in a heterogeneous, resistance-trained sample. Multiple linear regression was used to examine the relationships between the biomechanical, anthropometric, and psychological variables and BP 1RM. Our data indicate that BP strength among a heterogeneous, resistance-trained population is explained by multiple factors and is more strongly associated with physical than psychological variables. View this paper
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Article
Perceived Pain in Athletes: A Comparison between Endurance Runners and Powerlifters through a Cold Experimental Stimulation and Two Sessions of Various Physical Activation
Sports 2022, 10(12), 211; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120211 - 19 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 622
Abstract
Few studies in the literature have illustrated cold hypoalgesia induced by strength training. Objectives of this contribution were to compare the ratings of perceived pain in endurance running (n = 22) and powerlifting (n = 22) male athletes and controls (n = 22) [...] Read more.
Few studies in the literature have illustrated cold hypoalgesia induced by strength training. Objectives of this contribution were to compare the ratings of perceived pain in endurance running (n = 22) and powerlifting (n = 22) male athletes and controls (n = 22) at baseline and after two bouts of 40 min aerobic/strength training respectively, using the Cold Pressor Test (CPT) and simultaneously monitoring changes in blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR), and body temperature. A two-way repeated measures ANOVA was conducted to examine the effects of training sessions in endurance runners vs. powerlifting athletes vs. controls on the intensity of perceived pain at CPT. A statistically significant two-way interaction between the group and training resulted in p < 0.001, ηp2 = 0.513. A simple main effects analysis showed that as the participants went through the strength training session, pain perception at CPT was significantly lower in powerlifters compared to runners and controls. Considering the physiological parameters, powerlifters reported significantly higher values of BP and HR. This difference was present at baseline but after training as well, and before and after CPT, despite a slight hypotensive effect. The differences reported after CPT at baseline, but very significantly after the strength activation session in the powerlifters, provide interesting insights into the hypoalgesic effect of high-intensity strength training. Full article
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Article
The Effect of Strength Training on Undetected Shoulder Pathology in Asymptomatic Athletes: An MRI Observational Study
Sports 2022, 10(12), 210; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120210 - 15 Dec 2022
Viewed by 612
Abstract
Background: Data on the effects of weight training on joint morphology are mostly restricted to muscle gain. However, in many circumstances, it is not stated if there are negative consequences for the joints and their surrounding components. This study was conducted to explore [...] Read more.
Background: Data on the effects of weight training on joint morphology are mostly restricted to muscle gain. However, in many circumstances, it is not stated if there are negative consequences for the joints and their surrounding components. This study was conducted to explore whether long-term excessive resistance training (RT) causes hidden pathological alterations in the shoulder. Methods: A total of eleven asymptomatic sportsmen (22 shoulders) underwent clinical and radiological examination of both shoulder joints. All participants had engaged in bodybuilding for at least four years, at least three times per week, and for at least four hours per week. All participants were examined clinically using the Constant Murley Score (CMS), Simple Shoulder Test (SST), UCLA Activity Test, and a specially designed questionnaire. All participants received a bilateral shoulder MRI. The MRI scans were checked for pathology using a checklist. Results: Maximum scores were observed for the SST and UCLA Activity Test. The CMS was 97.7 points on average (range, 87–100). RT had been conducted for a mean of 10.7 years (range, 4–20), for an average of 8.8 h a week (range, 4–12). MRI examinations revealed two supraspinatus tendinopathies (9.1%), one labral change (4.5%), three humeral tuberosity cysts (13.6%), fourteen acromioclavicular (AC) joint hypertrophies (63.6%), five AC joint osteophytes (22.7%), and ten signs of AC joint inflammation (45.5%). Conclusions: The research results show that strength is associated with MRI-documented AC joint pathology. However, it appears that RT may not negatively affect other anatomical structures of the shoulder. Full article
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Case Report
Roller Speed Skating Kinematics and Electromyographic Analysis: A Methodological Approach
Sports 2022, 10(12), 209; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120209 - 14 Dec 2022
Viewed by 792
Abstract
Roller speed skating is a discipline similar to hockey and ice skating from a biomechanical point of view, but there are no specific functional protocols for rehabilitation and performance improvement for these athletes. The aim of the study is to create a dedicated [...] Read more.
Roller speed skating is a discipline similar to hockey and ice skating from a biomechanical point of view, but there are no specific functional protocols for rehabilitation and performance improvement for these athletes. The aim of the study is to create a dedicated functional, kinematic and electromyographic protocol to be used as a tool for future studies on the subject. The protocol was created, starting from a correct and repeatable movement as a case study, on a world speed skating champion, using an inertial sensor positioned at the level of the first sacral vertebra, eight electromyographic probes positioned on one or the other lower limb, and a high-definition camera at 50 Hz. The results show the electromyographic activity of the muscles investigated, the degree of absolute muscle activation and compared to their maximum voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC), the level of co-activation of the agonist/antagonist muscles, and the accelerations of the body on the three axes of space. The results will represent the basis for physiotherapy and specific training use. Future developments will include the analysis of a sample of elite athletes to be able to build a normal range on the parameters investigated, and the possibility of treating in the most appropriate way possible muscle injuries (which mostly occur in the groin in such athletes) once they have occurred, even with oriented MVIC or co-activation oriented exercises. Full article
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Review
Impact of Exercise on Vascular Function in Middle-Aged and Older Adults: A Scoping Review
Sports 2022, 10(12), 208; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120208 - 14 Dec 2022
Viewed by 657
Abstract
There is a substantial literature gap related to the vascular response to different types of exercise training in middle-aged and older populations. Thus, this scoping review aimed to examine the outcomes of controlled trials testing the long-term effects of exercise interventions on vascular [...] Read more.
There is a substantial literature gap related to the vascular response to different types of exercise training in middle-aged and older populations. Thus, this scoping review aimed to examine the outcomes of controlled trials testing the long-term effects of exercise interventions on vascular function-related outcomes in middle-aged and older populations. The literature search was conducted following PRISMA guidelines. Data sources: five databases were used (EBSCO, MEDLINE, Web of Science, Science Direct, and Google Scholar). Eligibility criteria: controlled trials, published in the last 10 years, in English, containing well-described exercise interventions, reporting vascular quantitative effects of exercise in middle-aged and older people. A total of 62 publications were included. The studies included distinct types and intensities of exercise and were heterogeneous in volume and frequency. The assessed vascular outcomes also presented considerable variability. Overall, most studies reported positive effects of exercise on vascular function outcomes, regardless of exercise characteristics. Different exercise interventions can be applied to improve vascular function in middle-aged and older adults. Studies on combined and stretching exercises reported encouraging results in improving vascular function. Stretching exercises rise as an effective alternative in promoting vascular function among older adults, while combined exercise delivered promising vascular benefits in both populations. Full article
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Article
The Addition of High-Load Resistance Exercises to a High-Intensity Functional Training Program Elicits Further Improvements in Body Composition and Strength: A Randomized Trial
Sports 2022, 10(12), 207; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120207 - 13 Dec 2022
Viewed by 1165
Abstract
The current study aimed to examine the effects of adding specific high-load resistance exercises to a high-intensity functional training (HIFT) program on healthy adults’ physical fitness and body composition. Twenty recreationally active volunteers (30 ± 4 y, 12 females, 8 males) were randomly [...] Read more.
The current study aimed to examine the effects of adding specific high-load resistance exercises to a high-intensity functional training (HIFT) program on healthy adults’ physical fitness and body composition. Twenty recreationally active volunteers (30 ± 4 y, 12 females, 8 males) were randomly assigned to either a HIFT-control (HIFT-C, n = 10) or HIFT-power (HIFT-P, n = 10) group and trained three times per week for eight weeks. The HIFT-C protocol included four rounds of an 8-exercise circuit (30:15 s work: rest, 2 min rest after the second round). The exercises used were clean-and-press, box jump, TRX chest press, wall ball throws, burpees, repeated 10 m sprints, sumo squat-and-upright row, and abdominal crunches. The HIFT-P-group replaced TRX chest press with bench press and squat-and-upright row with squat, both at an intensity of 80% 1 RM. Before and after the intervention, participants underwent an evaluation of body composition, cardiorespiratory fitness, vertical jump, 1 RM bench press, and the maximum number of abdominal crunches in 1 min. In both groups, cardiorespiratory fitness, squat jump, countermovement jump, bench press 1 RM, and percent body fat improved significantly after the intervention (p < 0.050), while a trend towards significant time x group interaction was found for bench press 1 RM (p = 0.076), indicating a superiority of HIFT-P over HIFT-C. Muscle mass significantly increased by 3.3% in the HIFT-P group, while abdominal muscle endurance improved by 16.2% in the HIFT-C group (p < 0.050). Short-term HIFT resulted in improvements in whole-body cardiorespiratory and neuromuscular fitness and reduction of body fat. The addition of high-load resistance exercises was well tolerated and resulted in increased muscle mass and upper body maximal strength. HIFT-P programs can be suitable for individuals seeking to enhance muscle mass and physical fitness in a short time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Exercise Interventions for Health Promotion across the Life Span)
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Article
Reliability and Practical Use of a Commercial Device for Measuring Punch and Kick Impact Kinetics
Sports 2022, 10(12), 206; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120206 - 13 Dec 2022
Viewed by 593
Abstract
Martial arts, boxing and combat sports such as mixed martial arts participation have gained popularity in recent years internationally. One common aspect to these sports is the training and skill in maximizing strike impact of punches and kicks, referred to as impact kinetics, [...] Read more.
Martial arts, boxing and combat sports such as mixed martial arts participation have gained popularity in recent years internationally. One common aspect to these sports is the training and skill in maximizing strike impact of punches and kicks, referred to as impact kinetics, with commercial devices now available to assess punching and kicking power in athletes training facilities and gyms. We, therefore, assessed the reliability of a commercial device, the PowerKubeTM (Strike Research Ltd., Norwich, England) via the technical error of measurement (TEM) in both linear and non-linear simulated strikes to the center of target, off-center, level and inclined in a laboratory setting. The highest mean impact power resulted from level, center strikes (5782 ± 230 W) followed by level, off-center strikes (4864 ± 119 W, p < 0.05), inclined center strikes (4500 ± 220 W, p < 0.05), and inclined, off-center strikes (3390 ± 151). Peak power reductions ranged from 15.9% (level, off-center) to a maximum of 41.4% (incline, off-center) compared to the level, center strikes. Coaches are advised to take steps such as videoing strikes with high sampling rates to better ensure consistency in impact orientation, being perpendicular and centered on the strike pad, to best capture the peak power of kicks or punches. Full article
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Article
Performance Level and Strike Type during Ground and Pound Determine Impact Characteristics and Net Force Variability
Sports 2022, 10(12), 205; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120205 - 13 Dec 2022
Viewed by 631
Abstract
The evaluation of strike impact is important for optimal training, conditioning and tactical use. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate ground and pound strikes, in terms of net force variability, across genders and performance levels. Eighty-one participants, professional men ( [...] Read more.
The evaluation of strike impact is important for optimal training, conditioning and tactical use. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate ground and pound strikes, in terms of net force variability, across genders and performance levels. Eighty-one participants, professional men (n = 8, 37 ± 6 years, 195 ± 7 cm, 113 ± 27 kg), advanced men (n = 47, 26 ± 8 years, 180 ± 7 cm, 76 ± 11 kg), and advanced women (n = 26, 21 ± 1 years, 167 ± 6 cm, 61 ± 7 kg) performed three strikes from a kneeling position into a force plate on the ground. The elbow strike resulted in the highest impulse and the palm strike in the highest peak force for all three categories. These results support the recommendation that has previously been made to teach the palm strike to beginners and advanced tactical and combat athletes. The direct punch and elbow strike net force were characterized by a double peak curve, where the first peak variability explained 70.2–84% of the net force. The second peak was pronounced in professional men during elbow strikes, which explained 16% of net force variability. The strike type determines the impact net force and its characteristics, where palm strike is typical by highest peak impact tolerance and elbow strike by double force peak with high net force impulse. Full article
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Article
Knee Isokinetic Profiles and Reference Values of Professional Female Soccer Players
Sports 2022, 10(12), 204; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120204 - 12 Dec 2022
Viewed by 738
Abstract
Few studies have previously evaluated isokinetic parameters in female soccer players in comparison to those in males. The aim of this study was to describe normative quadriceps (Q) and hamstring (H) muscle strength values in professional female soccer players and to examine differences [...] Read more.
Few studies have previously evaluated isokinetic parameters in female soccer players in comparison to those in males. The aim of this study was to describe normative quadriceps (Q) and hamstring (H) muscle strength values in professional female soccer players and to examine differences between dominant leg (DL) and nondominant leg (NDL). A standardized test protocol of concentric knee extension and flexion test protocol was conducted using the dynamometer isokinetic system (IsoMEd 2000). All the participants were healthy female professional soccer players from Spanish first and second division teams. Players were assessed for peak torque (PT) and maximum work (MW) values at 60°/s, 180°/s, and 240°/s. The mean difference was 7.17 (p-value = 0.0036), 4.4 (p-value = 0.0386), and 4.25 Nm (p-value = 0.0241) at speed 60°, 180°, and 240°/s, respectively. No statistically significant differences were detected for H–Q values between DL and NDL. This difference was 6.44 (p-value = 0.0449), and 5.87 J (p-value = 0.0266) at speed 60°, and 180°/s. The present study can be a tool that health professionals working with female professional soccer players in their care can use to assess and monitor a particular player. Full article
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Article
Effects of Kettlebell Load on Joint Kinetics and Global Characteristics during Overhead Swings in Women
Sports 2022, 10(12), 203; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120203 - 11 Dec 2022
Viewed by 483
Abstract
This study sought to identify the changes in ankle, knee, and hip joint kinetics with increasing load while performing the kettlebell overhead swing (OHS). Women (n = 18, age: 29.4 ± 5.3 years, 69.7 ± 8.9 kg) with a minimum of 6 months [...] Read more.
This study sought to identify the changes in ankle, knee, and hip joint kinetics with increasing load while performing the kettlebell overhead swing (OHS). Women (n = 18, age: 29.4 ± 5.3 years, 69.7 ± 8.9 kg) with a minimum of 6 months of kettlebell swing training experience performed fifteen repetitions of the kettlebell OHS with three different kettlebell masses (8 kg, 12 kg, 16 kg) in a counterbalanced order. Ankle, knee, and hip joint kinematics were captured within a 12-camera infrared motion capture space, while standing atop two force plates collecting ground reaction force (GRF) data. Post hoc results of statistically significant joint by mass interactions (p < 0.05) of the net joint moment impulse, work, and peak power revealed the hip demonstrating the greatest increase in response to load, followed by the ankle (p < 0.05). The knee joint kinetics changed very little between the masses. Pairwise post hoc comparisons between the joints at each mass level support the kettlebell OHS as being a hip dominant exercise, with the knee making the second largest contribution, despite contributions not changing across kettlebell masses. Collectively, these results provide practitioners with objective evidence regarding the mechanical demands and effects of load changes on the kettlebell OHS. Full article
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Article
Single and Especially Multisport Participation May Increase Physical Fitness in Younger Americans
Sports 2022, 10(12), 202; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120202 - 09 Dec 2022
Viewed by 448
Abstract
Background: We sought to examine the associations between sports participation and physical fitness in younger Americans. Methods: The analytic sample included 1108 Americans aged 6–15 years. Muscular fitness assessments included handgrip strength, leg extension strength, and plank position. Cardiorespiratory fitness was examined with [...] Read more.
Background: We sought to examine the associations between sports participation and physical fitness in younger Americans. Methods: The analytic sample included 1108 Americans aged 6–15 years. Muscular fitness assessments included handgrip strength, leg extension strength, and plank position. Cardiorespiratory fitness was examined with graded treadmill tests. Results: Youth participating in any sports had increased physical fitness performance for each marker: 1.63 kg (CI: 0.91–2.35) for handgrip strength, 6.23 kg (CI: 3.15–9.32) for leg extension strength, 9.41 lbs. (CI: 4.51–14.31) for plank position held, and 3.02 mL/kg/min (CI: 1.23–4.80) for estimated maximal oxygen uptake. Participants engaging in a single sport had increased performance for most fitness markers: 1.52 kg (CI: 0.67–2.38) for handgrip strength, 5.16 kg (CI: 1.50–8.82) for leg extension strength, 5.98 s (CI: 0.17–11.78) for plank position held, and 2.67 mL/kg/min (CI: 0.58–4.77) for estimated maximal oxygen uptake. Youth engaging in multiple sports exhibited even steeper trends: 1.77 kg (CI: 0.83–2.70) for handgrip strength, 7.63 kg (CI: 3.62–11.65) for leg extension strength, 13.89 s (CI: 7.52–20.27) for plank position held, and 3.50 mL/kg/min (CI: 1.15–5.85) for estimated maximal oxygen uptake. Conclusions: Any sports participation, including single and multiple sports, is linked to increased physical fitness in American youth. Full article
Article
Which of the Physiological vs. Critical Speed Is a Determinant of Modern Pentathlon 200 m Front Crawl Swimming Performance: The Influence of Protocol and Ergometer vs. Swimming Pool Conditions
Sports 2022, 10(12), 201; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120201 - 06 Dec 2022
Viewed by 539
Abstract
Background: Modern pentathlon includes horse riding, fencing, swimming, shooting and cross-country running. Events can last many hours during which the athletes face almost maximal energy and physiological demands, and fatigue. Early recognition and prevention of injuries and overuse syndromes can be achieved by [...] Read more.
Background: Modern pentathlon includes horse riding, fencing, swimming, shooting and cross-country running. Events can last many hours during which the athletes face almost maximal energy and physiological demands, and fatigue. Early recognition and prevention of injuries and overuse syndromes can be achieved by refining the individual training loads. The purpose of the study was to determine which parameter could be the most accurate predictor of swimming working capacity determinants in pentathletes. Methods: Fourteen male pentathletes performed a continuous maximal incremental test in the swimming flume ergometer to measure peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak), and five swimming tests in a 50 m swimming pool to detect critical velocity (CV); velocity at 2 and 4 mM·L−1 of blood lactate (v2, v4) and energy cost (EC). Results: The 200 m swimming time was 2:18–2:32 m:s (340 FINA points). CV was 1.21 ± 0.04 m·s−1, v2 was 1.14 ± 0.09 and v4 1.23 ± 0.08 m·s−1. VO2peak was 3540.1 ± 306.2 mL·min−1 or 48.8 ± 4.6 mL·kg−1·min−1. EC at 1.24 m·s−1 was 45.7 ± 2.4 mL·kg−1·min−1. Our main finding was the large correlation of CV with 200 m swimming performance; Conclusions: Among all the protocols analysed, CV is the most predictive and discriminative of individual swimming performance in this group of pentathletes. It appears as the most suitable test to constantly refine their swimming training loads for both performance enhancement and health promotion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health and Performance of Water Based Exercise and Sports)
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Article
Association of Co-Living and Age on the Type of Sports Practiced by Older People
Sports 2022, 10(12), 200; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120200 - 05 Dec 2022
Viewed by 650
Abstract
Introdution: The environment and the type of co-living of older people are crucial to understanding how the nature of their context influences a healthy lifestyle. However, no studies have investigated to what extent their type of co-living may be associated with the sports [...] Read more.
Introdution: The environment and the type of co-living of older people are crucial to understanding how the nature of their context influences a healthy lifestyle. However, no studies have investigated to what extent their type of co-living may be associated with the sports and the profile practice according to their age. Objective: This study aimed to assess the association between the types of co-living and the age of the physically active elderly and the sports they practice. Hypothesis: It is thought that the age, situation, and satisfaction with the way of living in physically active older people differ according to the type of sport they practice. Methods: Cross-sectional study. We included 358 individuals aged between 61 and 93 years old (M = 69.66, SD = 4.74). Type of co-living was classified as living alone or living with others. The sports activities evaluated were: gym, dance, water activities, and yoga/pilates. Differences in the type of co-living and sports practiced were evaluated by ANOVA or Chi2. Results: Among the elderly who practice gymnastics, most of them live alone and in a tight core (p < 0.001) (Phi = 0.244). Furthermore, those who practice aquatic activities are more frequently the youngest (p < 0.001) (Phi = 0.198). Conclusion: Older people who do gymnastics have smaller living groups, those under 69 opt for gymnastics and aquatic activities, while those aged 70 and over prefer dance, yoga, and pilates. Full article
Article
Biomechanical, Anthropometric and Psychological Determinants of Barbell Bench Press Strength
Sports 2022, 10(12), 199; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120199 - 05 Dec 2022
Viewed by 1899
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to improve our understanding of the relative contributions of biomechanical, anthropometric, and psychological factors in explaining maximal bench press (BP) strength in a heterogeneous, resistance-trained sample. Eighteen college-aged participants reported to the laboratory for three visits. The [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to improve our understanding of the relative contributions of biomechanical, anthropometric, and psychological factors in explaining maximal bench press (BP) strength in a heterogeneous, resistance-trained sample. Eighteen college-aged participants reported to the laboratory for three visits. The first visit consisted of psychometric testing. The second visit assessed participants’ anthropometrics, additional psychometric outcomes, and bench press one repetition maximum (1RM). Participants performed isometric dynamometry testing for horizontal shoulder adduction and elbow extension at a predicted sticking point joint position. Multiple linear regression was used to examine the relationships between the biomechanical, anthropometric, and psychological variables and BP 1RM. Our primary multiple linear regression accounted for 43% of the variance in BP strength (F(3,14) = 5.34, p = 0.01; R2 = 0.53; adjusted R2 = 0.43). The sum of peak isometric net joint moments from the shoulder and elbow had the greatest standardized effect (0.59), followed by lean body mass (0.27) and self-efficacy (0.17). The variance in BP 1RM can be similarly captured (R2 = 0.48) by a single principal component containing anthropometric, biomechanics, and psychological variables. Pearson correlations with BP strength were generally greater among anthropometric and biomechanical variables as compared to psychological variables. These data suggest that BP strength among a heterogeneous, resistance-trained population is explained by multiple factors and is more strongly associated with physical than psychological variables. Full article
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Review
Effects of the Practice of Movement Representation Techniques in People Undergoing Knee and Hip Arthroplasty: A Systematic Review
Sports 2022, 10(12), 198; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120198 - 05 Dec 2022
Viewed by 742
Abstract
Objective: To analyze the effects of movement representation techniques (MRT) combined with conventional physical therapy (CFT) in people undergoing knee and hip arthroplasty compared to conventional physical therapy alone in terms of results in physical and functionality variables, cognitive function, and quality of [...] Read more.
Objective: To analyze the effects of movement representation techniques (MRT) combined with conventional physical therapy (CFT) in people undergoing knee and hip arthroplasty compared to conventional physical therapy alone in terms of results in physical and functionality variables, cognitive function, and quality of life. Methodology: the review was carried out according to the criteria of the PRISMA statement, considering studies in the electronic databases PubMed/Medline, Pubmed Central/Medline, Web of Science, EBSCO, and ScienceDirect. Results: MRT plus CFT generated therapeutic effects in some aspects of the physical variables: 100% pain (7 of 7 studies); 100% strength (5 out of 5 studies); range of motion 87.5% (7 out of 8 studies); 100% speed (1 of 1 study), functional variables: 100% gait (7 of 7 studies); functional capacity 87.5% (7 out of 8 studies); cognitive variables: 100% motor visualization ability (2 out of 2 studies); cognitive performance 100% (2 of 2 studies); and quality of life 66.6% (2 of 3 studies). When comparing its effects with conventional physical therapy, the variables that reported the greatest statistically significant changes were motor visualization ability, speed, pain, strength and gait. The most used MRT was motor imagery (MI), and the average time extension of therapies was 3.5 weeks. Conclusions: movement representation techniques combined with conventional physical therapy are an innocuous and low-cost therapeutic intervention with therapeutic effects in patients with knee arthroplasty (KA) and hip arthroplasty (HA), and this combination generates greater therapeutic effects in physical, functional, and cognitive variables than conventional physical therapy alone. Full article
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Article
Ultimate Frisbee Players: Characteristics according to Their Competitive Level and Spirit of the Game
Sports 2022, 10(12), 197; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120197 - 02 Dec 2022
Viewed by 892
Abstract
In Ultimate Frisbee, players are responsible for administering and reinforcing adherence to the rules of the game. As a self-refereed sport, UF relies upon the Spirit of the Game (SOTG). This study aimed to profile the experience, to ascertain the training history of [...] Read more.
In Ultimate Frisbee, players are responsible for administering and reinforcing adherence to the rules of the game. As a self-refereed sport, UF relies upon the Spirit of the Game (SOTG). This study aimed to profile the experience, to ascertain the training history of the sport, the participation and goal orientations of international Ultimate Frisbee players in the European Beach Ultimate Championship, and to evaluate the contribution of these variables in a discriminant function to classify players according to SOTG level and competitive level. The sample consisted of 160 players [females 33.8% (29.3 ± 7.2 years); males 66.2% (37.6 ± 9.7 years)] who competed in the European Beach Ultimate Championship, 2019. Factorial ANOVA was used to test the effect of sex, competitive level and SOTG level (measured by the sum of the scores obtained in five questions addressing the following domains: (1) Knowledge and use of the rules; (2) Fouls and body contact; (3) Fair-mindedness; (4) Positive attitude and self-control; (5) Communication. The results revealed that sex was not a consistent source of SOTG level variation among players. In each competitive level, those with high SOTG levels obtained lower European Beach Ultimate Championship classification (t = 5.73 to 6.55, p < 0.001, d = 1.28 to 2.06), higher SOTG classification (t = −13.21 to −7.04, p < 0.001, d = 1.28 to 2.85), and better evaluation for fouls and body contact (t = 2.76 to 9.23, p < 0.05, d = 0.86 to 1.99) and for positive attitude (t = 5.88 to 7.43, p < 0.001, d = 2.06 to 2.57), than regular SOTG level players. Players of different competitive levels demonstrated similar SOTG results. These findings provide important information to coaches, physical education teachers and sport consultants. Full article
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Article
Implementation and Evaluation of a School-Based Educational Program Targeting Healthy Diet and Exercise (DIEX) for Greek High School Students
Sports 2022, 10(12), 196; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120196 - 01 Dec 2022
Viewed by 732
Abstract
The present study examined the effectiveness of a school-based health education program promoting healthy diet and exercise, named DIEX, implemented on adolescents. The program is based on the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) and is supported by life skills training. The recipients of [...] Read more.
The present study examined the effectiveness of a school-based health education program promoting healthy diet and exercise, named DIEX, implemented on adolescents. The program is based on the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) and is supported by life skills training. The recipients of the program were high school students (n = 367; 168 boys and 199 girls) from 14 schools in Greece who attended 10 1 h sessions implemented by their schoolteachers. Data were collected before and after the program implementation through online questionnaires for: a. attitude, intention, subjective norms, and PBC toward healthy eating; b. knowledge about healthy eating; c. exercise behavior and attitude toward the DIEX program; and d. satisfaction with the DIEX program (only post-program). The results showed that there were significant differences among the pre- and post-measures of students’ knowledge and behavior about healthy diet, as well as attitudes and satisfaction toward the program’s application. The results show that the DIEX program may have improved nutrition behavior variables. Conclusively, a theory-based behavioral intervention with skills training may result in positive behavioral changes for young students during health education in school settings with the assistance of new technologies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Exercise Interventions for Health Promotion across the Life Span)
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Article
Acute Effects of Heavy Strength Training on Mechanical, Hemodynamic, Metabolic, and Psychophysiological Parameters in Young Adult Males
Sports 2022, 10(12), 195; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120195 - 30 Nov 2022
Viewed by 702
Abstract
This study analyzed the acute effects of heavy strength training on mechanical, hemodynamic, metabolic, and psychophysiological responses in adult males. Thirteen recreational level males (23.3 ± 1.5 years) randomly performed two heavy strength training sessions (3 sets of 8 repetitions at 80% of [...] Read more.
This study analyzed the acute effects of heavy strength training on mechanical, hemodynamic, metabolic, and psychophysiological responses in adult males. Thirteen recreational level males (23.3 ± 1.5 years) randomly performed two heavy strength training sessions (3 sets of 8 repetitions at 80% of one repetition maximum [1RM]) using the bench press (HST-BP) or full squat (HST-FS)). The repetition velocity was recorded in both sessions. Moreover, before and after the sessions, the velocity attained against the ~1.00 m·s−1 load (V1Load) in the HST-BP, countermovement jump (CMJ) height in the HST-FS, blood pressure, heart rate, blood lactate, and psychophysiological responses (OMNI Perceived Exertion Scale for Resistance Exercise) were measured. There were differences between exercises in the number of repetitions performed in the first and third sets (both <8 repetitions). The velocity loss was higher in the HST-BP than in the HST-FS (50.8 ± 10.0% vs. 30.7 ± 9.5%; p < 0.001). However, the mechanical fatigue (V1Load vs. CMJ height) and the psychophysiological response did not differ between sessions (p > 0.05). The HST-FS caused higher blood pressure and heart rate responses than the HST-BP (p < 0.001 and p = 0.02, respectively) and greater blood lactate changes from pre-training to post-set 1 (p < 0.05). These results showed that the number of maximal repetitions performed in both sessions was lower than the target number and decreased across sets. Moreover, the HST-BP caused a higher velocity loss than the HST-FS. Finally, the HST-FS elicited higher hemodynamic and metabolic demand than the HST-BP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effect of Neuromuscular Fatigue Mechanisms on Exercise Performance)
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Article
Serum Amyloid Beta Precursor Protein, Neurofilament Light, and Visinin-like Protein-1 in Rugby Players: An Exploratory Study
Sports 2022, 10(12), 194; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120194 - 29 Nov 2022
Viewed by 646
Abstract
Concussion diagnosis is difficult and may be improved with the addition of a blood-based biomarker that indicates concussion. The purpose of this research was to investigate the capability of serum amyloid beta precursor protein (APP), neurofilament light (NfL), and visinin-like protein-1 (VILIP-1) to [...] Read more.
Concussion diagnosis is difficult and may be improved with the addition of a blood-based biomarker that indicates concussion. The purpose of this research was to investigate the capability of serum amyloid beta precursor protein (APP), neurofilament light (NfL), and visinin-like protein-1 (VILIP-1) to distinguish athletes who were diagnosed with a concussion pitch-side. An observational cross-sectional study design was used to replicate sideline concussion diagnosis. Subjects included mutually exclusive pre-match (n = 9), post-match (n = 15), and SRC (n = 7) groups. Six paired pre-and post-match subjects were analyzed for APP. APP increased significantly from pre-match (mean = 57.98 pg·mL−1, SD = 63.21 pg·mL−1) to post-match (mean = 111.37 pg·mL−1, SD = 106.89 pg·mL−1, p = 0.048) in the paired subjects. NfL was lower in the SRC group (median = 8.71 pg·mL−1, IQR = 6.09 pg·mL−1) compared to the post-match group (median = 29.60 pg·mL−1, IQR = 57.45 pg·mL−1, p < 0.001). VILIP-1 was higher in the post-match group (median = 212.18 pg·mL−1, IQR = 345.00 pg·mL−1) compared to both the pre-match (median = 32.63 pg·mL−1, IQR = 52.24 pg·mL−1), p = 0.001) and SRC (median = 30.21 pg·mL−1, IQR = 47.20 pg·mL−1), p = 0.003) groups. APP, NfL, and VILIP-1 were all able to distinguish between pre-match and post-match groups (AUROC > 0.700) but not from the SRC group (AUROC < 0.660). Our results show that APP, NfL, and VILIP-1 were not helpful in differentiating concussed from non-concussed athletes pitch-side in this study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sports Injury: Prevention and Rehabilitation)
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Article
Comparison of the Reliability of Four Different Movement Thresholds When Evaluating Vertical Jump Performance
Sports 2022, 10(12), 193; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120193 - 29 Nov 2022
Viewed by 588
Abstract
Analyzing vertical jumps performed on a force plate can be useful for the strength and conditioning professional in managing neuromuscular fatigue. The purpose of this study was to compare different movement thresholds when analyzing countermovement (CJ) and squat jump (SJ) performance. Twenty-one college-aged [...] Read more.
Analyzing vertical jumps performed on a force plate can be useful for the strength and conditioning professional in managing neuromuscular fatigue. The purpose of this study was to compare different movement thresholds when analyzing countermovement (CJ) and squat jump (SJ) performance. Twenty-one college-aged participants (9 female, 12 male) performed five CJs and five SJs. Movement initiation was identified when the vertical ground reaction force (VGRF) deviated five standard deviations (5SD), four standard deviations, (4SD), 2.5% of system weight (2.5%SW), and 10% of system weight (10%SW) from their starting position. For CJs, movement was determined when the VGRF deviated either above or below these thresholds (5SDAB, 4SDAB, 2.5%SWAB, 10%SWAB) and was compared to when VGRF deviated below these thresholds (5SDB, 4SDB, 2.5%SWB, 10%SWB) in terms of peak force (Fmax), net impulse (netIMP), braking impulse (brIMP), propulsive impulse, jump height (JHT), peak power (Pmax), peak velocity (Vmax), and RSImod. For SJs, movement was determined when VGRF initially rose above these thresholds (5SD, 4SD, 2.5%SW, and 10%SW) for Fmax, netIMP, JHT, and Vmax. Significant differences were observed among several methods except for Fmax. However, these differences were small. All CJ measures demonstrated good-to-excellent relative reliability (ICC: 0.790–0.990) except for netIMP for 2.5%SWAB (ICC: 0.479). All methods demonstrated good absolute reliability as measured by percent coefficient of variation (CV%) except brIMP and RSImod. This may be due to instructions given to each jumper as well as skill level. For SJs, no differences in Fmax or netIMP were found across all methods. Small differences were seen for JHT, Pmax, and Vmax across several methods. All methods produced acceptable CV% (<10%) and excellent ICCs (0.900–0.990). However, some jumpers produced CV% that was greater than 10% when determining JHT for 5SD, 4SD, and 2.5%SW methods. This could be due to our method of obtaining system weight. Based on our findings, we recommend using the 10%SW method for assessing SJ performance on a force plate. Full article
Article
Monitoring of the Training Load and Well-Being of Elite Rhythmic Gymnastics Athletes in 25 Weeks: A Comparison between Starters and Reserves
Sports 2022, 10(12), 192; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120192 - 28 Nov 2022
Viewed by 646
Abstract
The objective of this study was to monitor the training loads (TL) and well-being of elite rhythmic gymnastics (RG) athletes, as well as compare these variables between starters and reserve gymnasts during 25 weeks of training. Ten athletes from the Brazilian national RG [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to monitor the training loads (TL) and well-being of elite rhythmic gymnastics (RG) athletes, as well as compare these variables between starters and reserve gymnasts during 25 weeks of training. Ten athletes from the Brazilian national RG team (17.4 ± 1.1 y of age) were monitored during the general preparatory period (GPP), specific preparatory period (SPP), and pre-competitive period (PCP). The internal TL was quantified with the use of sessional ratings of perceived exertion (sRPE). We assessed well-being daily with a well-being scale. The TL, duration, monotony, and strain were calculated weekly. We found that the internal TL and session durations were 9242 ± 2511 AU and 2014 ± 450 min, respectively. The internal TL, strain, and monotony were greater in the PCP than in the GPP and SPP for starters. In the SPP, there were statistical differences in internal TL (p = 0.036) and strain (p = 0.027) between starters and reserves. In the PCP, there were also statistical differences between starters vs. reserves athletes regarding internal TL (p = 0.027) and strain (p = 0.05). There was no statistically significant difference in well-being between the periods assessed. In conclusion, RG athletes display a higher TL magnitude during the PCP, whereas only reporting non-significant minor variations in well-being. In addition, there is a discrepancy in the TL between starters and reserves. Full article
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Article
Relationship of Training Factors and Resilience with Injuries in Ski Mountaineers
Sports 2022, 10(12), 191; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120191 - 25 Nov 2022
Viewed by 653
Abstract
Ski mountaineering is an increasingly popular sport with a relatively high risk of injury. Therefore, several studies have analyzed factors related to the likelihood of injury, including athlete characteristics, training, resilience and equipment. Thus, the aim of this study was to identify factors [...] Read more.
Ski mountaineering is an increasingly popular sport with a relatively high risk of injury. Therefore, several studies have analyzed factors related to the likelihood of injury, including athlete characteristics, training, resilience and equipment. Thus, the aim of this study was to identify factors that may influence injury risk. A 15-minute online survey was sent to various ski mountaineering groups of different ages and levels. Both the Mann–Whitney U test and odds ratio analysis were performed in order to analyze the data. Results from 104 skiers showed that most injuries occurred in the lower extremities, especially in the knee (29.6%). The findings indicated that skiers who had suffered an injury performed in more competitions per year (p = 0.046), more ski mountaineering sessions per week (p = 0.022) and fewer core training sessions per week (0.029), although core training and competition were not statistically significant factors. Likewise, non-injured athletes had fewer pairs of skis (p = 0.019), which were also wider (p = 0.04). However, no difference was found for warm up and resilience between both groups (p = 0.275). In conclusion, it is important to implement preventive measures based on these factors, even if more research is needed. Full article
Article
Metabolic and Performance Responses to a Simulated Routine in Elite Artistic Swimmers
Sports 2022, 10(12), 190; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120190 - 25 Nov 2022
Viewed by 623
Abstract
The purpose of this investigation was to examine the interrelationship between time spent underwater (UW), movement frequency and accompanying blood acid base balance response. Elite artistic swimmers (n = 6) participated in the investigation and were all familiar with the testing procedures. All [...] Read more.
The purpose of this investigation was to examine the interrelationship between time spent underwater (UW), movement frequency and accompanying blood acid base balance response. Elite artistic swimmers (n = 6) participated in the investigation and were all familiar with the testing procedures. All athletes completed the same choreographed artistic swimming routine. The routine was videoed and the number of movements during each ‘lap’ of the routine counted. Fingertip capillary blood samples were collected prior to the routine 60 sec post routine for pH, partial pressure of carbon dioxide (pCO2), partial pressure of oxygen (pO2), bicarbonate (HCO3) and potassium (K+). and lactate (La) concentration (mmol/L). On a separate day an incremental exercise test to exhaustion was performed on a cycle ergometer for determination of maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max). Over half the routine was performed underwater (56 ± 4%). Aside from pCO2 (−1.07 ± 12.29%, p = 0.686), there were significant changes in all variables measured from the BG analysis. VO2peak was significantly correlated to total UW of the routine (r = −0.93; p = 0.007). as well as ∆PO2 r = 0.47 and ∆HCO3 r = 0.51. There was also a significant correlation between total UW and post routine pCO2 (r = 0.86; p = 0.030). There was also a significant correlation between total movements during the routine and post pO2 (r = −0.83; p = 0.044). These data show UW in combination with movement rate during a AS routine imfluence the metabolic response to the exercise. In addition, VO2max represents an important performance variable influencing AS performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health and Performance of Water Based Exercise and Sports)
Editorial
Special Issue “Talent Identification and Development in Youth Sports”
Sports 2022, 10(12), 189; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120189 - 24 Nov 2022
Viewed by 839
Abstract
We are delighted to share our Special Issue on Talent Identification and Development in Youth Sports [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Talent Identification and Development in Youth Sports)
Article
Health-Related Physical Fitness in Adolescents from Spain, Estonia and Iceland: A Cross-Sectional, Quantitative Study
Sports 2022, 10(12), 188; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120188 - 22 Nov 2022
Viewed by 525
Abstract
The benefits of physical fitness (PF) for health are well-known. Low PF significantly contributes to the prevalence of obesity in adolescents, with an increased risk of developing chronic diseases. The objectives of the present study were to explore the health-related PF components and [...] Read more.
The benefits of physical fitness (PF) for health are well-known. Low PF significantly contributes to the prevalence of obesity in adolescents, with an increased risk of developing chronic diseases. The objectives of the present study were to explore the health-related PF components and body composition levels in adolescents in three European cities, and their differences. The present study is a cross-sectional, descriptive, and quantitative research effort with 1717 participants aged between 13–16 years (48% girls), enrolled in public and private secondary schools in Seville (Spain), Reykjavik (Iceland) and Tartu (Estonia). The ALPHA fitness battery test was used with the following tests: handgrip strength, standing broad jump, 4 × 10 m speed-agility, 20 m shuttle run, and anthropometric variables. Regarding body composition, differences were detected for city and gender in height (p < 0.001), weight (p < 0.001), body fat percentage (p < 0.001), and waist circumference (p < 0.001); but no differences were reported for BMI for both city (p = 0.150) and gender (p = 0.738). Similarly, concerning PF, it was detected statistically significant differences between cities and gender in handgrip strength (p < 0.001), jump test (p < 0.001), speed-agility test (p < 0.001), and cardiovascular endurance in both variables (p < 0.001). In total, 26.8% of the boys and 27.3% of the girls were categorized as overweight; 18.1% of the boys and 31.2% of the girls had an excessive percentage of fat mass; and 22.7% of the boys and 22.2% of the girls showed an excessive waist circumference. The participants from Seville presented the lowest results in PF tests. In contrast, Reykjavik, with the highest results in the endurance and speed-agility tests, and Tartu, with higher results in the manual grip strength and long jump tests, shared the highest results. Full article
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Article
Characteristics of Fitness-Related Injuries in The Netherlands: A Descriptive Epidemiological Study
Sports 2022, 10(12), 187; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10120187 - 22 Nov 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 607
Abstract
Although general information is available, specifically detailed information on gym-based fitness-related injuries in the general recreational fitness population is lacking. The aim of our study was to obtain more insight into injuries occurring as a result of gym-based fitness activities. A descriptive online [...] Read more.
Although general information is available, specifically detailed information on gym-based fitness-related injuries in the general recreational fitness population is lacking. The aim of our study was to obtain more insight into injuries occurring as a result of gym-based fitness activities. A descriptive online epidemiological study was conducted in November 2020. The survey was distributed by a market research agency to members of their research panel. A total of 494 Dutch fitness participants aged ≥ 18 years (mean 38.9; 59% male) who had sustained a fitness-related injury in the preceding 12 months were included in the study. Most injuries occurred during strength training, individual cardio exercise, yoga/Pilates, cardio exercise in group lessons, and CrossFit. The shoulder, leg, and knee were the most common injured body parts; 73.1% of the injuries occurred during unsupervised gym-based fitness activities, and 46.2% of the injuries occurred during one specific exercise or when using a specific fitness device: running (e.g., on the treadmill) (22.8%); bench press (11.8%); or squats (9.6%). Overuse or overload (n = 119), missteps and sprains (n = 48), or an incorrect posture or movement (n = 43) were most often mentioned as causes of injury. Conclusions: Most self-reported gym-based fitness-related injuries occur during strength training and individual cardio exercise. Special attention should be given to the shoulder during strength training and to the lower extremities during cardio exercise. Injury prevention interventions should be able to be carried out without supervision. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sports Injury: Prevention and Rehabilitation)
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