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Sports, Volume 6, Issue 1 (March 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Researchers at Auburn University examined the effects of a 12-week ketogenic diet on body [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle
Duration Dependent Effect of Static Stretching on Quadriceps and Hamstring Muscle Force
Sports 2018, 6(1), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010024 - 13 Mar 2018
Viewed by 1634
Abstract
The aim of this study was to determine the acute effect of static stretching on hamstring and quadriceps muscles’ isokinetic strength when applied for various durations to elite athletes, to investigate the effect of different static stretching durations on isokinetic strength, and finally [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to determine the acute effect of static stretching on hamstring and quadriceps muscles’ isokinetic strength when applied for various durations to elite athletes, to investigate the effect of different static stretching durations on isokinetic strength, and finally to determine the optimal stretching duration. Fifteen elite male athletes from two different sport branches (10 football and five basketball) participated in this study. Experimental protocol was designed as 17 repetitive static stretching exercises for hamstring and quadriceps muscle groups according to the indicated experimental protocols; ((A) 5 min jogging; (B) 5 min jogging followed by 15 s static stretching; (C) 5 min jogging followed by 30 s static stretching; (D) 5 min jogging, followed by static stretching for 45 s). Immediately after each protocol, an isokinetic strength test consisting of five repetitions at 60°/s speed and 20 repetitions at 180°/s speed was recorded for the right leg by the Isomed 2000 device. Friedman variance analysis test was employed for data analysis. According to the analyzes, it was observed that 5 min jogging and 15 s stretching exercises increased the isokinetic strength, whereas 30 and 45 s stretching exercises caused a decrease. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Non-Contact Respiration Measurement during Exercise Tolerance Test by Using Kinect Sensor
Sports 2018, 6(1), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010023 - 13 Mar 2018
Viewed by 1486
Abstract
This study aims to assess non-contact respiration measurement during the exercise stress test using an upright bicycle ergometer and to evaluate the ventilation threshold value. We propose the tracking of the chest and abdomen by applying the motion capture function of the Kinect [...] Read more.
This study aims to assess non-contact respiration measurement during the exercise stress test using an upright bicycle ergometer and to evaluate the ventilation threshold value. We propose the tracking of the chest and abdomen by applying the motion capture function of the Kinect V2 sensor to cope with an increase in physical exercise accompanied by an increase in exercise intensity. In the proposed method, the region enclosed by the four joints corresponding to the left and right shoulders and the right and left hip extracted using the Kinect sensor is set as the region of interest. The region is updated in response to changes in body movements. By extracting the signal of the pedaling frequency component from the time series data of the volume in the region, only the volume change due to respiration was extracted. The point at which the increased rate of the volume change elevates is estimated as the ventilation threshold. The assessment of the efficacy of the proposed method by comparative analysis using an expiration gas analyzer confirmed that non-contact respiration evaluation is possible with an exercise intensity of about 160 W. Furthermore, the ventilation threshold estimated by the proposed method is ±10 W of the estimated value by expiratory gas analyzer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micro and Nano Technologies for Sport)
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Open AccessCase Report
The Impact of 120 Minutes of Match-Play on Recovery and Subsequent Match Performance: A Case Report in Professional Soccer Players
Sports 2018, 6(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010022 - 13 Mar 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2148
Abstract
The influence of a match including extra-time (ET) on subsequent 90 min match performance and recovery has not been investigated. Four professional soccer players played in three competitive matches in a 7-day period: matches one (MD1) and three (MD3) lasted 90 min and [...] Read more.
The influence of a match including extra-time (ET) on subsequent 90 min match performance and recovery has not been investigated. Four professional soccer players played in three competitive matches in a 7-day period: matches one (MD1) and three (MD3) lasted 90 min and match 2 (MD2) lasted 120 min (i.e., included ET). Physical (total and high-intensity (HI) distance covered, accelerations and decelerations, and mechanical load) and technical performances (pass and dribble accuracy) were analyzed throughout match-play. Subjective measures of recovery and countermovement jump (CMJ) height were made 36–42 h post-match. Post-MD2, there were very or most likely harmful effects of ET on CMJ height (−6 ± 9%), muscle soreness (+18 ± 12%), and fatigue (+27 ± 4%) scores, and overall wellness score (−13 ± 5%) compared to post-MD1. Furthermore, there were very likely harmful effects on muscle soreness (+13 ± 14%), wellness scores (−8 ± 10%), and CMJ height (−6 ± 9%) post-MD3 vs. post-MD1. There was a possibly harmful effect of ET on HI distance covered during MD3, along with reductions in pass (−9.3%) and dribble (−12.4%) accuracy. An ET match negatively impacted recovery 36 h post-match. Furthermore, in some players, indices of performance in a 90 min match played 64 h following ET were compromised, with subsequent recovery also adversely affected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fatigue and Recovery in Football)
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Open AccessArticle
Can Genetics Predict Sports Injury? The Association of the Genes GDF5, AMPD1, COL5A1 and IGF2 on Soccer Player Injury Occurrence
Sports 2018, 6(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010021 - 05 Mar 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3157
Abstract
Genetics plays an integral role in athletic performance and is increasingly becoming recognised as an important risk factor for injury. Ankle and knee injuries are the most common injuries sustained by soccer players. Often these injuries result in players missing training and matches, [...] Read more.
Genetics plays an integral role in athletic performance and is increasingly becoming recognised as an important risk factor for injury. Ankle and knee injuries are the most common injuries sustained by soccer players. Often these injuries result in players missing training and matches, which can incur significant costs to clubs. This study aimed to identify genotypes associated with ankle and knee injuries in soccer players and how these impacted the number of matches played. 289 soccer players, including 46 professional, 98 semi-professional and 145 amateur players, were genetically tested. Ankle and knee injuries and the number of matches played were recorded during the 2014/15 season. Four genes were assessed in relation to injury. Genotypes found to be associated with injury included the TT (nucleobase) genotype of the GDF5 gene, TT and CT (nucleobase) genotypes of AMPD1 gene, TT genotype of COL5A1 and GG (nucleobase) genotype of IGF2 gene. These genes were also associated with a decrease in the number of matches played. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Examining the Reaction Times of International Level Badminton Players Under 15
Sports 2018, 6(1), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010020 - 05 Mar 2018
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1087
Abstract
This research was conducted to examine the simple visual and auditory reaction times of badminton players of the national teams and to examine the possible effects of reaction-time average values of badminton players under the age of 15 who participated in the fifth [...] Read more.
This research was conducted to examine the simple visual and auditory reaction times of badminton players of the national teams and to examine the possible effects of reaction-time average values of badminton players under the age of 15 who participated in the fifth International Rumi Child Sport Games. In total, 48 players (male = 24; female = 24) from six countries (Turkey, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Serbia, Georgia) participated in the study. Stature, bodyweight, BMI, dominant and non-dominant hand visual and auditory reaction time values of the participants were detected. At the end of the study, it was determined that there were statistically significant differences between the countries in terms of male dominant and non-dominant hand visual reaction values, and male dominant hand auditory reaction values. It was also determined that there were statistically significant differences between the countries in terms of female bodyweight, BMI, dominant and non-dominant hand visual reaction values, and female non-dominant hand auditory reaction values. There was statistically significant difference between female and male players with regards to dominant and non-dominant hand visual, and non-dominant hand auditory reaction values. In conclusion, it was determined that the reaction times of the top ranking countries in the fifth International Rumi Child Sport Games under-15 were at a better level, and it can be concluded that this factor played an important role for success alongside with technique and tactic features. Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Monitoring and Managing Fatigue in Basketball
Sports 2018, 6(1), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010019 - 27 Feb 2018
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2128
Abstract
The sport of basketball exposes athletes to frequent high intensity movements including sprinting, jumping, accelerations, decelerations and changes of direction during training and competition which can lead to acute and accumulated chronic fatigue. Fatigue may affect the ability of the athlete to perform [...] Read more.
The sport of basketball exposes athletes to frequent high intensity movements including sprinting, jumping, accelerations, decelerations and changes of direction during training and competition which can lead to acute and accumulated chronic fatigue. Fatigue may affect the ability of the athlete to perform over the course of a lengthy season. The ability of practitioners to quantify the workload and subsequent fatigue in basketball athletes in order to monitor and manage fatigue levels may be beneficial in maintaining high levels of performance and preventing unfavorable physical and physiological training adaptations. There is currently limited research quantifying training or competition workload outside of time motion analysis in basketball. In addition, systematic research investigating methods to monitor and manage athlete fatigue in basketball throughout a season is scarce. To effectively optimize and maintain peak training and playing performance throughout a basketball season, potential workload and fatigue monitoring strategies need to be discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Improving Practice and Performance in Basketball)
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Open AccessArticle
Examination of Performance Levels of Wheelchair Basketball Players Playing in Different Leagues
Sports 2018, 6(1), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010018 - 25 Feb 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 980
Abstract
This research was conducted to examine the anthropometric and biometric features of the elite wheelchair basketball players in different league levels, and to evaluate them with regards to field tests particular to wheelchair basketball. A sample of 21 male players volunteered to participate [...] Read more.
This research was conducted to examine the anthropometric and biometric features of the elite wheelchair basketball players in different league levels, and to evaluate them with regards to field tests particular to wheelchair basketball. A sample of 21 male players volunteered to participate in the research with similar classification points, 12 of whom were from Turkey Wheelchair Basketball First League and 9 of whom were from the Second League. Anthropometric measurements, biometric features of the players and their skill test scores particular to wheelchair basketball were detected. The anthropometric measurements were taken over dominant extremity. SPSS 21.0 program was used in the analysis of the data, and minimum, maximum, arithmetic mean, and standard deviation values were determined. Intergroup differences were determined with Mann–Whitney U analysis. Significance level was admitted as p < 0.05. As a conclusion, it was determined that wheelchair basketball players had similar anthropometric features in the First and Second League levels, and that there was no difference based on the league level they were playing, and moreover, that bio-motor features and skills particular to wheelchair basketball were decisive on the levels of the leagues the players were taking part. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Predictors of Swimming Ability among Children and Adolescents in the United States
Sports 2018, 6(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010017 - 24 Feb 2018
Viewed by 1469
Abstract
Swimming is an important source of physical activity and a life skill to prevent drowning. However, little research has been conducted to understand predictors of swimming ability. The purpose of this study was to understand factors that predict swimming ability among children and [...] Read more.
Swimming is an important source of physical activity and a life skill to prevent drowning. However, little research has been conducted to understand predictors of swimming ability. The purpose of this study was to understand factors that predict swimming ability among children and adolescents in the United States (US). This was a cross-sectional survey conducted between February and April of 2017 across five geographically diverse cities. Participants were accessed through the Young Christian Men’s Association (YMCA) and included parents of children aged 4–11 years old and adolescents aged 12–17 years old. Independent t-test, analysis of variance (ANOVA), and univariate and multivariate analyses were conducted. Several factors were significant (p ≤ 0.05) predictors of swimming ability and explained 53% of the variance in swimming ability. Variables that were positively associated with swimming ability included: ability of parent(s) to swim, child/adolescent age, a best friend who enjoys swimming, water-safety knowledge, pool open all year, and encouragement to swim from parent(s). Variables that were negatively associated with swimming ability included: fear of drowning, being African American, and being female. Interventions and programs to improve the swimming ability of children and adolescents could be developed with these predictors in mind. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Demands of a Women’s College Soccer Season
Sports 2018, 6(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010016 - 23 Feb 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1617
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to use GPS, accelerometers, and session rating of perceived exertion (sRPE) to examine the demands of a Division II women’s soccer team. Data was collected on 25 collegiate Division II women’s soccer players over an entire regular [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to use GPS, accelerometers, and session rating of perceived exertion (sRPE) to examine the demands of a Division II women’s soccer team. Data was collected on 25 collegiate Division II women’s soccer players over an entire regular season (17 matches and 24 practices). ZephyrTM BioHarnesses (BHs) were used to collect tri-axial acceleration information and GPS derived variables for all matches and practices. Acceleration data was used to calculate Impulse Load, a measure of mechanical load that includes only locomotor related accelerations. GPS was used to quantify total distance and distance in six speed zones. Internal Training Loads were assessed via sRPE. Mean Impulse Load, total distance, and sRPE during match play was 20,120 ± 8609 N·s, 5.48 ± 2.35 km, and 892.50 ± 358.50, respectively. Mean Impulse Load, total distance, and sRPE during practice was 12,410 ± 4067 N·s, 2.95 ± 0.95 km, and 143.30 ± 123.50, respectively. Several very large to nearly perfect correlations were found between Impulse Load and total distance (r = 0.95; p < 0.001), Impulse Load and sRPE (r = 0.84; p < 0.001), and total distance and sRPE (r = 0.82; p < 0.001). This study details the mechanical demands of Division II women’s soccer match play. This study also demonstrates that Impulse Load is a good indicator of total distance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micro and Nano Technologies for Sport)
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Open AccessArticle
The Use of an Optical Measurement System to Monitor Sports Performance
Sports 2018, 6(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010015 - 17 Feb 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1171
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to compare ground contact time between an optical measurement system and a force platform. Participants in this study included six collegiate level athletes who performed drop jumps and sprint strike steps for a total of 15 repetitions [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to compare ground contact time between an optical measurement system and a force platform. Participants in this study included six collegiate level athletes who performed drop jumps and sprint strike steps for a total of 15 repetitions each. Ground contact data was simultaneously collected from an optical measurement system and a force platform, at a sampling frequency of 1000 Hz. Data was then analyzed with Pearson’s correlation and paired sample t-tests. The measures from the optical measurement system were found to be significantly higher (p < 0.001) than measures from the force platform in both conditions. Although significantly different, the extremely large relationships (0.979, 0.993) found between the two devices suggest the optical sensor is able to detect similar changes in performance to that of a force platform. Practitioners may continue to utilize optical sensors to monitor performance as it may provide a superior user-friendly alternative to more traditional based monitoring procedures, but must comprehend the inherent limitations due to the design of the optical sensors. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Seasonal Variations in Physical Fitness and Performance Indices of Elite Soccer Players
Sports 2018, 6(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010014 - 13 Feb 2018
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1144
Abstract
The aim of the study was to investigate seasonal variations in fitness and performance indices of professional male soccer players. Eighteen professional male soccer players (age range 22–32 years) completed three similar sets of tests at three stages of the season: before preseason; [...] Read more.
The aim of the study was to investigate seasonal variations in fitness and performance indices of professional male soccer players. Eighteen professional male soccer players (age range 22–32 years) completed three similar sets of tests at three stages of the season: before preseason; after preseason and the middle of the competitive in-season. A significant decrease in body mass and percent fat was found during the preseason. A significant improvement (p < 0.05) was found in the vertical jump (preseason: 37.0 ± 5.3, post-preseason: 39.0 ± 4.8, mid-season: 40.3 ± 5.5 cm), the 4 × 10-m agility test (preseason: 8.1 ± 0.2, post-preseason: 7.9 ± 0.2, mid-season: 8.1 ± 0.3 s), flexibility (preseason: 45.2 ± 8.8, post-preseason: 48.2 ± 7.0, mid-season: 49.9 ± 6.9 cm) and aerobic capacity (preseason: 52.7 ± 6.6, post-preseason: 56.4 ± 6.0, mid-season: 57.4 ± 5.4 mL/kg/min) during preseason, with no further change during mid-season. Repeated sprint test (RST) (6 × 30-m) performance indices showed significant deterioration (p < 0.05) in ideal sprint time (IS; preseason: 21.8 ± 1.0, post-preseason: 23.0 ± 0.8, mid-season: 23.2 ± 0.8 s) and total sprint time (TS; preseason: 22.5 ± 0.7, post-preseason: 23.5 ± 0.6, mid-season: 23.8 ± 0.6 s) during preseason, with no further changes during mid-season. However, performance decrement (PD) significantly decreased during the preseason with no change during mid-season. The findings suggest that while power training was probably responsible for the anaerobic fitness improvement, the high-volume training led to improvement in aerobic fitness during the preseason. However, the low-intensity aerobic-type training, coupled with the high total training load, may have led to fatigue and decreases in IS and TS during the preseason. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fatigue and Recovery in Football)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
The Influence of Playing Position and Contextual Factors on Soccer Players’ Match Differential Ratings of Perceived Exertion: A Preliminary Investigation
Sports 2018, 6(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010013 - 12 Feb 2018
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1979
Abstract
(1) Background: Differential RPE (dRPE) separates scores for breathlessness (RPE-B), leg muscle exertion (RPE-L) and technical/cognitive exertion (RPE-T). Limited information for dRPE is available in soccer match play, yet these measurements may help inform practitioners training and recovery strategies. This preliminary study investigated [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Differential RPE (dRPE) separates scores for breathlessness (RPE-B), leg muscle exertion (RPE-L) and technical/cognitive exertion (RPE-T). Limited information for dRPE is available in soccer match play, yet these measurements may help inform practitioners training and recovery strategies. This preliminary study investigated the effects of playing position and contextual factors on elite soccer players’ dRPE. (2) Methods: Thirty-two male English Premier League players recorded dRPE scores 15–30 min post-match for RPE-B, RPE-L, and RPE-T. Data were analysed using linear mixed models, with magnitude-based inferences subsequently applied. (3) Results: Overall, the mean ± SD for the dRPE were 63 ± 23 arbitrary units (au) (RPE-B), 67 ± 22 au (RPE-L), and 60 ± 24 au (RPE-T). Full Backs reported substantially higher RPE-B, RPE-L and RPE-T when compared to all other positions. Substantially higher RPE-T scores were reported for matches played against Top teams compared to Bottom (10 au; 90% Confidence Interval 5 to 15 au) and Middle (10 au; 4 to 15 au) ranked teams. The effects of match result and location on dRPE were not substantial. (4) Conclusions: Positional differences were observed following soccer match play for RPE-B, RPE-L and RPE-T. Full backs had substantially higher dRPE then any other position, with all players reporting increased RPE-T when playing teams at the Top of the league. These findings can help practitioners monitor internal load responses and support the prescription of training and recovery sessions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fatigue and Recovery in Football)
Open AccessReview
Nutrition and Supplementation Considerations to Limit Endotoxemia When Exercising in the Heat
Sports 2018, 6(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010012 - 06 Feb 2018
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1708
Abstract
Exercise-induced heat production is further elevated by exercise performed in hot conditions and this can subsequently impact inflammation, and gastrointestinal (GI) health. Implementing nutrition and supplementation strategies under these conditions may support the hyperthermic response, the systemic inflammatory response, GI permeability and integrity, [...] Read more.
Exercise-induced heat production is further elevated by exercise performed in hot conditions and this can subsequently impact inflammation, and gastrointestinal (GI) health. Implementing nutrition and supplementation strategies under these conditions may support the hyperthermic response, the systemic inflammatory response, GI permeability and integrity, and exercise performance. Therefore, the aim of this brief review is to explore athletes’ inflammatory response of two key biomarkers, lipopolysaccharide (LPS), and interleukin-6 (IL-6), and provide nutrition and supplementation recommendations when exercising in hot conditions. There is emerging evidence that probiotics, glutamine, and vitamin C can preserve GI integrity, which may improve performance during exercise in the heat. Glucose rich food when consumed with water, before and during exercise in the heat, also appear to limit endotoxemia, preserve GI integrity, and reduce the incidence of GI disturbances compared with water alone. The use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may compromise GI integrity and this may result in greater leakage of endotoxins during long duration exercise in the heat. Further work is required to elucidate the impact of nutrition and supplementation strategies, in particular the use of NSAIDs, when exercising in the heat. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clinical and Sports Nutrition)
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Open AccessReview
Topical and Ingested Cooling Methodologies for Endurance Exercise Performance in the Heat
Sports 2018, 6(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010011 - 02 Feb 2018
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1836
Abstract
This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to assess studies which have investigated cooling methodologies, their timing and effects, on endurance exercise performance in trained athletes (Category 3; VO2max ≥ 55 mL·kg·min−1) in hot environmental conditions (≥28 °C). Meta-analyses were performed [...] Read more.
This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to assess studies which have investigated cooling methodologies, their timing and effects, on endurance exercise performance in trained athletes (Category 3; VO2max ≥ 55 mL·kg·min−1) in hot environmental conditions (≥28 °C). Meta-analyses were performed to quantify the effects of timings and methods of application, with a narrative review of the evidence also provided. A computer-assisted database search was performed for articles investigating the effects of cooling on endurance performance and accompanying physiological and perceptual responses. A total of 4129 results were screened by title, abstract, and full text, resulting in 10 articles being included for subsequent analyses. A total of 101 participants and 310 observations from 10 studies measuring the effects of differing cooling strategies on endurance exercise performance and accompanying physiological and perceptual responses were included. With respect to time trial performance, cooling was shown to result in small beneficial effects when applied before and throughout the exercise bout (Effect Size: −0.44; −0.69 to −0.18), especially when ingested (−0.39; −0.60 to −0.18). Current evidence suggests that whilst other strategies ameliorate physiological or perceptual responses throughout endurance exercise in hot conditions, ingesting cooling aids before and during exercise provides a small benefit, which is of practical significance to athletes’ time trial performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environment and Sport Performance)
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Open AccessReview
Cancer and Exercise: Warburg Hypothesis, Tumour Metabolism and High-Intensity Anaerobic Exercise
Sports 2018, 6(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010010 - 31 Jan 2018
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3597
Abstract
There is ample evidence that regular moderate to vigorous aerobic physical activity is related to a reduced risk for various forms of cancer to suggest a causal relationship. Exercise is associated with positive changes in fitness, body composition, and physical functioning as well [...] Read more.
There is ample evidence that regular moderate to vigorous aerobic physical activity is related to a reduced risk for various forms of cancer to suggest a causal relationship. Exercise is associated with positive changes in fitness, body composition, and physical functioning as well as in patient-reported outcomes such as fatigue, sleep quality, or health-related quality of life. Emerging evidence indicates that exercise may also be directly linked to the control of tumour biology through direct effects on tumour-intrinsic factors. Beside a multitude of effects of exercise on the human body, one underscored effect of exercise training is to target the specific metabolism of tumour cells, namely the Warburg-type highly glycolytic metabolism. Tumour metabolism as well as the tumour–host interaction may be selectively influenced by single bouts as well as regularly applied exercise, dependent on exercise intensity, duration, frequency and mode. High-intensity anaerobic exercise was shown to inhibit glycolysis and some studies in animals showed that effects on tumour growth might be stronger compared with moderate-intensity aerobic exercise. High-intensity exercise was shown to be safe in patients; however, it has to be applied carefully with an individualized prescription of exercise. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Exercise and Chronic Disease)
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Open AccessArticle
Anthropometric Variables and Somatotype of Young and Professional Male Basketball Players
Sports 2018, 6(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010009 - 29 Jan 2018
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1560
Abstract
Background: Determining somatic models and profiles in young athletes has recently become a fundamental element in selecting basketball playing positions. The aim of this study was to assess the relationship between the body build of young and adult elite male basketball players at [...] Read more.
Background: Determining somatic models and profiles in young athletes has recently become a fundamental element in selecting basketball playing positions. The aim of this study was to assess the relationship between the body build of young and adult elite male basketball players at different playing positions. Methods: Participants consisted of 35 young (age: 14.09 ± 0.30 years, n = 35) and 35 adult professional basketball players (age: 24.45 ± 5.40 years, n = 35) competing in elite leagues. The anthropometric characteristics assessed included body mass, body height, skinfolds, somatotypes, girths, and breadths. Results: The centers in both age groups were significantly taller and heavier (p < 0.001) compared to forwards and guards. The greatest difference between categories were in the guards’ personal height (from 169.36 to 186.68 = 17.32 cm). The guards from the professional team were closest in height to the forwards (difference = 7.17 cm) compared to young players where the difference between guards and forwards was 13.23 cm. Young competitors were more ectomorphic (2.12-3.75-4.17), while professional players were more mesomorphic (2.26-4.57-3.04). Significant criteria for center selection at professional level seems to be personal height and arm span ratio. Conclusions: The results indicate that the selection for basketball playing positions should include the analysis of body height and mass, shoulder breadth, humerus breadth, femur breadth and specifically for centers the difference between personal the height and arm span. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Improving Practice and Performance in Basketball)
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of a 12-Week Modified German Volume Training Program on Muscle Strength and Hypertrophy—A Pilot Study
Sports 2018, 6(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010007 - 29 Jan 2018
Viewed by 5157
Abstract
This study investigated the effect of a 12-week modified German Volume Training intervention, or the 10 sets method, on muscle strength and hypertrophy. Twelve healthy males were randomly assigned to either a 5-SET or 10-SET group and performed 5 or 10 sets, respectively, [...] Read more.
This study investigated the effect of a 12-week modified German Volume Training intervention, or the 10 sets method, on muscle strength and hypertrophy. Twelve healthy males were randomly assigned to either a 5-SET or 10-SET group and performed 5 or 10 sets, respectively, of 10 repetitions at 60–80% one-repetition maximum (1RM). Muscle strength and body composition measures were taken at baseline, six weeks, and after 12 weeks of training. No significant changes in total, trunk, and arm lean mass were found within and between groups at any time point. There was no significant difference between groups for lean leg mass. However, a decrease in lean leg mass was observed within the 10-SET group between six and 12 weeks (p = 0.02). An increase in 1RM bench press was found within the 5-SET group at week 6 (p = 0.001) and 12 (p = 0.001) when compared to baseline, while no increases in 1RM leg press were observed at any time point within any group. No significant differences were found for 1RM bench press and leg press between groups. For 1RM bench press moderate effect sizes (ES) favored 5-SET and for 1RM leg press small ESs favored 10-SET. Findings suggest performing >5 sets per exercise does not promote greater gains in muscle strength and hypertrophy. Future research should aim to substantiate these preliminary findings in a larger cohort. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Predictors of Academic Achievement among Physical Education and Sports Undergraduate Students
Sports 2018, 6(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010008 - 28 Jan 2018
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2436
Abstract
Although a number of studies have attempted to determine the antecedents, correlates, and consequences of students’ academic performance, there are few studies in the literature that examine the correlates of academic achievement for physical education and sports undergraduate students. The aim of this [...] Read more.
Although a number of studies have attempted to determine the antecedents, correlates, and consequences of students’ academic performance, there are few studies in the literature that examine the correlates of academic achievement for physical education and sports undergraduate students. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between the academic achievement of first-year physical education and sports students and their sociodemographics, attitudes towards the teaching profession, personality traits, and achievement goal orientations. The participants of the study consisted of 127 (67% male) physical education and sports students, ranging in age from 16 to 30 years old when they began their studies. Participants responded to a questionnaire to determine their sociodemographic characteristics, their attitudes towards the teaching profession in their high school years, their core self-evaluations, and their achievement goal orientations. Pearson correlation analysis results showed that students’ first year grade-point average (GPA) was associated with gender, high school GPA, core-self evaluations, and mastery-approach achievement goal orientation. Results of the regression analysis suggested that the three variables that predicted the students’ first year GPA were their mastery-approach scores, attitudes towards the teaching profession in high school years, and high school GPA. In order to prevent academic failure in physical education and sports students, those who do not have a mastery-approach goal orientation and who had a low high school GPA should be identified at the beginning of the academic year, so that educational interventions can be directed at these students. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Reliability of Parkour Skills Assessment
Sports 2018, 6(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010006 - 24 Jan 2018
Viewed by 1228
Abstract
The aim of the study was to determine the reliability of parkour skills assessment in field conditions. Twenty young men completed three trials of a parkour obstacle course on two separate days. The tested group consisted of 10 beginners (age 16 ± 1 [...] Read more.
The aim of the study was to determine the reliability of parkour skills assessment in field conditions. Twenty young men completed three trials of a parkour obstacle course on two separate days. The tested group consisted of 10 beginners (age 16 ± 1 years, body mass = 65 ± 12 kg, height = 177 ± 7 cm) and 10 advanced traceurs (age 18 ± 2 years, body mass = 68 ± 14 kg, height = 178 ± 6 cm). The performance was video-recorded and subsequently analyzed by three raters (total score 0–45). Median and percentiles were used to characterize results from all sessions by all raters. Inter-rater, intra-session and inter-session reliability were assessed using Krippendorff’s α for ordinal data. The Mann-Whitney test was used to assess the differences between beginners and advanced traceurs. Advanced traceurs obtained a total score from 41 to 44 whilst beginners achieved 27 to 33 points. Krippendorff’s α for total score ranged from 0.910 to 0.916 between raters, 0.828 to 0.874 between trials, and from 0.839 to 0.924 between days. The proposed parkour course differentiated two different ability levels and the skills assessment demonstrated excellent reliability between raters, trials, and days. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Influence of Concussion History and Genetics on Event-Related Potentials in Athletes: Potential Use in Concussion Management
Sports 2018, 6(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010005 - 19 Jan 2018
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2031
Abstract
Sports-related concussions are an increasing public health issue with much concern about the possible long-term decrements in cognitive function and quality of life that may occur in athletes. The measurement of cognitive function is a common component of concussion management protocols due to [...] Read more.
Sports-related concussions are an increasing public health issue with much concern about the possible long-term decrements in cognitive function and quality of life that may occur in athletes. The measurement of cognitive function is a common component of concussion management protocols due to cognitive impairments that occur after sustaining a concussion; however, the tools that are often used may not be sensitive enough to expose long term problems with cognitive function. The current paper is a brief review, which suggests that measuring cognitive processing through the use of event related potentials (ERPs) may provide a more sensitive assessment of cognitive function, as shown through recent research showing concussion history to influence ERPs components. The potential influence of genetics on cognitive function and ERPs components will also be discussed in relation to future concussion management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Activity in Sports and Exercise)
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Open AccessArticle
Links between Adolescent Athletes’ Prosocial Behavior and Relationship with Parents: A Mixed Methods Study
Sports 2018, 6(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010004 - 17 Jan 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1288
Abstract
Adolescent relationships with parents are of the highest importance. The relationships likely reflect the nature of internal working models in youth sport that may well function as a psychological template during the construction of youth prosocial behavior. However, researchers’ focus to date has [...] Read more.
Adolescent relationships with parents are of the highest importance. The relationships likely reflect the nature of internal working models in youth sport that may well function as a psychological template during the construction of youth prosocial behavior. However, researchers’ focus to date has concerned specific aspects of parental practices in child-based sporting activities. There is a lack of research covering parent-athlete interpersonal relationships concerned with how the relationships affect adolescent prosocial behavior. The purpose of this mixed methods explanatory sequential study was to examine teenage athletes’ prosocial behavior and their relationships with parents. To achieve our purpose, we obtained quantitative data from 1348 athletes and non-athletes (ages 12–16), and qualitative data from 12 adolescent athletes and 12 youth sports parents. In the quantitative phase, we assessed adolescent prosocial behavior regarding the following six forms of prosocial behavior: public, anonymous, dire, compliant, altruistic and emotional. In the qualitative follow-up, three themes emerged from the adolescent athlete’s perspective: (1) sport as an escape; (2) parent-child relationships in youth sports; (3) adolescents’ desired behavior. Three themes emerged from the parental perspective: (1) sport as protection and as a school of life; (2) painful decisions to release a child; (3) understanding adolescent behavior. We found protection from delinquent behavior and increased prosocial behavior with securely attached young athletes who are actively involved in sports. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Resting Hormone Alterations and Injuries: Block vs. DUP Weight-Training among D-1 Track and Field Athletes
Sports 2018, 6(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010003 - 16 Jan 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2222
Abstract
Daily undulating periodization (DUP), using daily alterations in repetitions, has been advocated as a superior method of resistance training, while traditional forms of programming for periodization (Block) have been questioned. Nineteen Division I track and field athletes were assigned to either a 10-week [...] Read more.
Daily undulating periodization (DUP), using daily alterations in repetitions, has been advocated as a superior method of resistance training, while traditional forms of programming for periodization (Block) have been questioned. Nineteen Division I track and field athletes were assigned to either a 10-week Block or DUP training group. Year and event were controlled. Over the course of the study, there were four testing sessions, which were used to evaluate a variety of strength characteristics, including maximum isometric strength, rate of force development, and one repetition maximum (1RM). Although, performance trends favored the Block group for strength and rate of force development, no statistical differences were found between the two groups. However, different (p ≤ 0.05) estimated volumes of work (VL) and amounts of improvement per VL were found between groups. Based upon calculated training efficiency scores, these data indicate that a Block training model is more efficient in producing strength gains than a DUP model. Additionally, alterations in testosterone (T), cortisol (C) and the T:C ratio were measured. Although there were no statistically (p ≤ 0.05) different hormone alterations between groups, relationships between training variables and hormone concentrations including the T:C ratio, indicate that Block may be more efficacious in terms of fatigue management. Full article
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Open AccessEditorial
Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Sports in 2017
Sports 2018, 6(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010002 - 11 Jan 2018
Viewed by 3011
Abstract
Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, ensuring that Sports maintains high quality standards for its published papers. In 2017, a total of 94 papers were published in the journal. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Three-Month Effects of a Ketogenic Diet on Body Composition, Blood Parameters, and Performance Metrics in CrossFit Trainees: A Pilot Study
Sports 2018, 6(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6010001 - 09 Jan 2018
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 22291
Abstract
Adopting low carbohydrate, ketogenic diets remains a controversial issue for individuals who resistance train given that this form of dieting has been speculated to reduce skeletal muscle glycogen levels and stifle muscle anabolism. We sought to characterize the effects of a 12-week ketogenic [...] Read more.
Adopting low carbohydrate, ketogenic diets remains a controversial issue for individuals who resistance train given that this form of dieting has been speculated to reduce skeletal muscle glycogen levels and stifle muscle anabolism. We sought to characterize the effects of a 12-week ketogenic diet (KD) on body composition, metabolic, and performance parameters in participants who trained recreationally at a local CrossFit facility. Twelve participants (nine males and three females, 31 ± 2 years of age, 80.3 ± 5.1 kg body mass, 22.9 ± 2.3% body fat, 1.37 back squat: body mass ratio) were divided into a control group (CTL; n = 5) and a KD group (n = 7). KD participants were given dietary guidelines to follow over 12 weeks while CTL participants were instructed to continue their normal diet throughout the study, and all participants continued their CrossFit training routine for 12 weeks. Pre, 2.5-week, and 12-week anaerobic performance tests were conducted, and pre- and 12-week tests were performed for body composition using dual X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and ultrasound, resting energy expenditure (REE), blood-serum health markers, and aerobic capacity. Additionally, blood beta hydroxybutyrate (BHB) levels were measured weekly. Blood BHB levels were 2.8- to 9.5-fold higher in KD versus CTL throughout confirming a state of nutritional ketosis. DXA fat mass decreased by 12.4% in KD (p = 0.053). DXA total lean body mass changes were not different between groups, although DXA dual-leg lean mass decreased in the KD group by 1.4% (p = 0.068), and vastus lateralis thickness values decreased in the KD group by ~8% (p = 0.065). Changes in fasting glucose, HDL cholesterol, and triglycerides were similar between groups, although LDL cholesterol increased ~35% in KD (p = 0.048). Between-group changes in REE, one-repetition maximum (1-RM) back squat, 400 m run times, and VO2peak were similar between groups. While our n-sizes were limited, these preliminary data suggest that adopting a ketogenic diet causes marked reductions in whole-body adiposity while not impacting performance measures in recreationally-trained CrossFit trainees. Whether decrements in dual-leg muscle mass and vastus lateralis thickness in KD participants were due to fluid shifts remain unresolved, and increased LDL-C in these individuals warrants further investigation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clinical and Sports Nutrition)
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