Sports or/and Special Populations: Training Physiology in Health and Sports Performance

A special issue of Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Factors and Global Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2023) | Viewed by 45676

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Guest Editor
Physical Education Department, Federal University of Segipe, São Cristóvão, Sergipe 49100-000, Brazil
Interests: environmental and exercise physiology; physiological responses; simulated and real adaptations to training; exercise performance for athletes and para-athletes
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Several factors have been identified as interfering with the success, rehabilitation, and fitness of athletes from childhood to adulthood, as well as in para-sport, and special populations, according to research. The performance and health of this population are affected by the relationships between stress, maturation, training load, and recovery. Environmental approaches aim to increase efficiency and physiological adaptations in this sense. In various situations and conditions, however, this stimulus–performance–adaptation relationship varies.

As a result, we look forward to receiving contributions related (but not limited) to the following topics: training load monitoring; stress and physiological responses during exercise or sports; recovery process after exercise; changes after stress and/or training load; physiology of training in health and sports performance.

All manuscripts will be reviewed by experts in the field by June 30, 2022.

Prof. Dr. Felipe Aidar
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • health promotion
  • fatigue monitoring
  • training load monitoring
  • sports
  • biological maturation
  • psychobiological changes
  • imune and edocrine responses
  • neuromuscular performance
  • adaptation to training
  • stress
  • recovery
  • fatigue
  • sleep
  • delayed onset muscle soreness
  • psychobiological changes
  • immunological responses
  • neuromuscular performance

Published Papers (20 papers)

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Editorial

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5 pages, 215 KiB  
Editorial
Sports and Special Populations: Training Physiology in Health and Sports Performance
by Felipe J. Aidar
Healthcare 2023, 11(15), 2198; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11152198 - 4 Aug 2023
Viewed by 949
Abstract
Health is increasingly being studied, notably concerning preventive measures for health issues [...] Full article

Research

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11 pages, 2227 KiB  
Article
Acute and Long-Lasting Effects of Slow-Paced Breathing on Handball Team Coach’s Match Stress
by Zoran Nikolovski, Dario Vrdoljak, Nikola Foretić, Mia Perić, Dora Marić and Charalampos Fountoulakis
Healthcare 2023, 11(9), 1242; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11091242 - 26 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1264
Abstract
Stress was previously defined as a response to any demand for change. These demands are noticeable during sport events, not only in athletes but also in coaches. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the influence of slow-paced breathing (SPB) on acute stress to [...] Read more.
Stress was previously defined as a response to any demand for change. These demands are noticeable during sport events, not only in athletes but also in coaches. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the influence of slow-paced breathing (SPB) on acute stress to handball coaches during official matches. One professional handball coach, aged 37 (height, 180 cm; weight, 80 kg), took part in the study. His salivary cortisol (C) concentration and alpha-amylase (AA) activity were measured, and his heart rate (HR) was monitored during six official matches. In the first three matches the SPB training protocol was not followed. From match four to match six, the coach performed SPB training every day and directly before the match. The decrease observed in AA was statistically significant with a large effect size (1.80). The trend of change in HR is visible and similar for matches with and without SPB. However, for SPB matches, there is a lower starting point compared to matches without SPB (89.81 ± 6.26 and 96.62 ± 8.10, respectively). Moreover, values of AA on SPB matches were smaller before the match (93.92 ± 15.89) compared to the same time point in non-SPB matches (115.30 ± 26.00). For AA, there is a significant effect size in the half-time (2.00) and after the match (−2.14). SPB matches showed a lower increase in AA. SPB might be used as one of the possible tools that could help coaches in achieving a desirable mental state during the match. Full article
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15 pages, 621 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Aerobic Exercise on Variation of Oxidative Stress, hs-CRP and Cortisol Induced by Sleep Deficiency
by Jong-Suk Park, Zsolt Murlasits and Sangho Kim
Healthcare 2023, 11(8), 1201; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11081201 - 21 Apr 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1603
Abstract
The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of sleep deficiency (SD) on oxidative stress, hs-CRP and cortisol levels and to examine the effects of different intensities of aerobic exercise on these parameters under SD conditions. Thirty-two healthy male university students [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of sleep deficiency (SD) on oxidative stress, hs-CRP and cortisol levels and to examine the effects of different intensities of aerobic exercise on these parameters under SD conditions. Thirty-two healthy male university students participated in the study and underwent both normal sleep (NS, 8 h of sleep per night for 3 consecutive days) and SD (4 h of sleep per night for 3 consecutive days). After the SD period, the participants performed treatment for 30 min according to their assigned group [sleep supplement after SD (SSD), low-intensity aerobic exercise after SD (LES), moderate-intensity aerobic exercise after SD (MES), high-intensity aerobic exercise after SD (HES)]. Sleep-related factors were measured at NS and SD, while oxidative stress, hs-CRP and cortisol levels were measured at NS, SD and immediately after treatment by group (AT). The results showed that actual total sleep time (ATST) was significantly reduced during SD compared to NS (p < 0.001), while the visual analogue scale (VAS) and Epworth sleepiness scale (ESS) were significantly increased during SD compared to NS (p < 0.001). The difference in reactive oxygen metabolites (d-ROMs) and cortisol levels showed a significant interaction effect (p < 0.01, p < 0.001, respectively), with LES showing a decrease in d-ROMs and cortisol levels compared to SD (p < 0.05). Similarly, SSD showed a decrease in cortisol levels compared to SD (p < 0.05), while HES led to a significant increase in d-ROMs and cortisol levels compared to SD (p < 0.05). Biological antioxidant potential (BAP) and hs-CRP did not show any significant effect (p > 0.05). These results suggest that LES is the most effective exercise intensity for mitigating the negative effects of SD. Full article
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13 pages, 850 KiB  
Article
Effects of Velocity-Based versus Percentage-Based Resistance Training on Explosive Neuromuscular Adaptations and Anaerobic Power in Sport-College Female Basketball Players
by Mingyang Zhang, Duanying Li, Jiaxin He, Xingyue Liang, Dongyu Li, Wenfeng Song, Shicong Ding, Jie Shu, Xiaoning Sun and Jian Sun
Healthcare 2023, 11(4), 623; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11040623 - 20 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3018
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to compare the impact of velocity-based resistance training (VBRT) and percentage-based resistance training (PBRT) on anaerobic ability, sprint performance, and jumping ability. Eighteen female basketball players from a Sport College were randomly divided into two groups: VBRT [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to compare the impact of velocity-based resistance training (VBRT) and percentage-based resistance training (PBRT) on anaerobic ability, sprint performance, and jumping ability. Eighteen female basketball players from a Sport College were randomly divided into two groups: VBRT (n = 10) and PBRT (n = 8). The six-week intervention consisted of two sessions per week of free-weight back squats with linear periodization from 65% to 95%1RM. In PBRT, the weights lifted were fixed based on 1RM percentage, while in VBRT, the weights were adjusted based on individualized velocity profiles. The T-30m sprint time, relative power of countermovement jump (RP-CMJ), and Wingate test were evaluated. The Wingate test assessed peak power (PP), mean power (MP), fatigue index (FI), maximal velocity (Vmax), and total work (TW). Results showed that VBRT produced a very likely improvement in RP-CMJ, Vmax, PP, and FI (Hedges’ g = 0.55, 0.93, 0.68, 0.53, respectively, p < 0.01). On the other hand, PBRT produced a very likely improvement in MP (Hedges’ g = 0.38) and TW (Hedges’ g = 0.45). Although VBRT showed likely favorable effects in RP-CMJ, PP, and Vmax compared to PBRT (p < 0.05 for interaction effect), PBRT produced greater improvements in MP and TW (p < 0.05 for interaction effect). In conclusion, PBRT may be more effective in maintaining high-power velocity endurance, while VBRT has a greater impact on explosive power adaptations. Full article
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10 pages, 295 KiB  
Article
Swimmers with Down Syndrome Are Healthier and Physically Fit than Their Untrained Peers
by Ana Querido, Mário J. Costa, Dália Araújo, António R. Sampaio, João P. Vilas-Boas, Rui Corredeira, Daniel J. Daly and Ricardo J. Fernandes
Healthcare 2023, 11(4), 482; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11040482 - 7 Feb 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2041
Abstract
While there are positive benefits from physical activity participation for individuals with Down syndrome, little is known about the effects of swimming training. The aim of this study was to compare the body composition and physical fitness profile of competitive swimmers and moderately [...] Read more.
While there are positive benefits from physical activity participation for individuals with Down syndrome, little is known about the effects of swimming training. The aim of this study was to compare the body composition and physical fitness profile of competitive swimmers and moderately active (untrained) individuals with Down syndrome. The Eurofit Special test was applied to a group of competitive swimmers (n = 18) and a group of untrained individuals (n = 19), all with Down syndrome. In addition, measurements were taken to determine body composition characteristics. The results showed differences between swimmers and untrained subjects in height, sum of the four skinfolds, body fat %, fat mass index and all items of the Eurofit Special test. Swimmers with Down syndrome exhibited physical fitness levels near to the Eurofit standards, although lower fitness levels were attained by these persons when compared to athletes with intellectual disability. It can be concluded that the practice of competitive swimming seems to counteract the tendency for obesity in persons with Down syndrome and also helps to increase strength, speed and balance. Full article
11 pages, 1121 KiB  
Article
Training in Hypoxia at Alternating High Altitudes Is a Factor Favoring the Increase in Sports Performance
by Ovidiu Dragos, Dan Iulian Alexe, Emil Vasile Ursu, Cristina Ioana Alexe, Nicoale Lucian Voinea, Petronela Lacramioara Haisan, Adelina Elena Panaet, Andreea Mihaela Albina and Dan Monea
Healthcare 2022, 10(11), 2296; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10112296 - 16 Nov 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2644
Abstract
Training above 1800 m causes increases in hemoglobin, erythropoietin and VO2max values in the bodies of athletes. The purpose of this study is to prove that living at an altitude of 1850 m and training at 2200 m (LHTH+) is more effective than [...] Read more.
Training above 1800 m causes increases in hemoglobin, erythropoietin and VO2max values in the bodies of athletes. The purpose of this study is to prove that living at an altitude of 1850 m and training at 2200 m (LHTH+) is more effective than living and training at 2000 m (LHTH). Ten endurance athletes (age 21.2 ± 1.5 years, body mass 55.8 ± 4.3 kg, height 169 ± 6 cm, performance 3000 m 8:35 ± 0:30 min) performed three training sessions of 30 days, in three different situations: [1] living and training at 2000 m altitude (LHTH), [2] living at 1850 m and training at 2200 m (LHTH+), and [3] living and training at 300 m (LLTL). The differences in erythropoietin (EPO), hemoglobin (Hb) concentration, and VO2max values were compared before and at the end of each training session. Data analysis indicated that LHTH training caused an increase in EPO values (by 1.0 ± 0.8 mU/mL, p = 0.002 < 0.05.); Hb (by 1.1 ± 0.3 g/dL, p < 0.001); VO2max (by 0.9 ± 0.23 mL/kg/min, p < 0.001). LHTH+ training caused an increase in EPO values (by 1.9 ± 0.5 mU/ML, p < 0.001); Hb (by 1.4 ± 0.5 g/dL, p < 0.001); VO2max (by 1.7 ± 0.3 mL/kg/min, p < 0.001). At the LLTL training, EPO values do not have a significant increase (p = 0.678 > 0.050; 1 ± 0.1 mU/mL, 0.1 ± 0.9%.), Hb (0.1 ± 0.0 g/dL, 0.3 ± 0.3%), VO2max (0.1 ± 0.1, 0.2 ± 0.2%, p = 0.013 < 0.05). Living and training at altitudes of 2000 m (LHTH) and living at 1850 m training at 2200 m (LHTH+) resulted in significant improvements in EPO, Hb, and VO2max that exceeded the changes in these parameters, following traditional training at 300 m (LLTL). LHTH+ training has significantly greater changes than LHTH training, favorable to increasing sports performance. The results of this study can serve as guidelines for athletic trainers in their future work, in the complete structure of multi-year planning and programming, and thus improve the process of development and performance training. Full article
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12 pages, 275 KiB  
Article
The Role of Volunteers in a Swimming Organization for Persons with Disabilities
by Alena Vernerova, Ivana Marova and Frantisek Chmelik
Healthcare 2022, 10(11), 2149; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10112149 - 28 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1139
Abstract
Participation in leisure time physical activity (LTPA) has considerable health-related, psychological, and social benefits. However, the involvement of individuals with disabilities is considerably less than that of their peers without disabilities. A higher rate of participation of individuals with disabilities in LTPA may [...] Read more.
Participation in leisure time physical activity (LTPA) has considerable health-related, psychological, and social benefits. However, the involvement of individuals with disabilities is considerably less than that of their peers without disabilities. A higher rate of participation of individuals with disabilities in LTPA may be achieved by the active involvement of volunteers. This study aimed to describe the importance of volunteer involvement in a swimming organization focused on individuals with disabilities, as perceived by all participants, including swimmers with disabilities, their parents, volunteers, and coaches. The organization uses volunteers as swimming instructors who work individually with swimmers with disabilities. The data were obtained through 11 semi-structured interviews with swimmers with disabilities and their parents, volunteers, and coaches. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed using a five-step inductive thematic analysis. As a result of the cooperation with the volunteer swimming instructors, swimmers with disabilities felt an improved range of movement, greater independence, and higher self-esteem than before they started using the services of the swimming organization. Consequently, even individuals with severe disabilities can participate in LTPA. Membership to the organization also provided space for the establishment of new social relations, and the instructors described them accepting persons with disabilities as their equals. More importantly, the involvement of volunteers enables organizations to provide respite care for parents. Full article
12 pages, 605 KiB  
Article
Development and Validation of a Scale Measuring Intention toward Participating in Pro Bono of Pre-Service Physical Activity Instructors for the Activation of Physical Activity for the Disabled: Based on the Theory of Planned Behavior
by Kyungjin Kim and Yonghwa Lee
Healthcare 2022, 10(10), 2094; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10102094 - 20 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1134
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to develop and validate a scale for predicting the intention of pre-service physical activity instructors for persons with disabilities to participate in pro bono work, based on the Theory of Planned Behavior. This study analyzed 322 university [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to develop and validate a scale for predicting the intention of pre-service physical activity instructors for persons with disabilities to participate in pro bono work, based on the Theory of Planned Behavior. This study analyzed 322 university students majoring in adapted physical activity in South Korea. To determine the purpose of the study, the EFA using SPSS 21.0 and CFA using AMOS 21.0 were used to confirm the validity of the measurement tool and the relationship between latent and observed variables. Further, the Cronbach’s alpha was used to identify the internal reliability. As a result, first, the questionnaire used in this study was validated based on the theory. Second, the behavioral belief was influenced by teaching experience about physical activity for the disabled and knowledge about physical activity for the disabled. Third, the normative belief was influenced by the parents of people with disabilities, people with disabilities, family members, friends, and students in my department. Fourth, the control belief was influenced by the state of mind of physical activity instructors for people with disabilities, the ability to create an IEP, and the ability to do physical activity. Full article
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17 pages, 393 KiB  
Article
A Study on the Establishment of Physical Activity Environment for People with Disabilities in South Korea
by Ah-Ra Oh and Kyungjin Kim
Healthcare 2022, 10(9), 1638; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10091638 - 27 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1265
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to analyze the relative importance and priority of what factors should be reflected in the administration to efficiently consider the needs of people with disabilities for the physical activity (PA) environment in South Korea. To achieve the [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to analyze the relative importance and priority of what factors should be reflected in the administration to efficiently consider the needs of people with disabilities for the physical activity (PA) environment in South Korea. To achieve the purpose of the study, 32 experts (e.g., faculty members, administrators) with more than 5 years of experience with PA for people with disabilities were asked to prioritize the factors that should be reflected in the PA environment. The questionnaire consisted of 4 factors in the upper-layer (H2), 8 factors in the middle-layer (H3), and 38 items in the low-layer (H4). The research instrument was composed of a pairwise comparison of decision elements to analyze the priority. For the analysis of the questionnaire data, the relative importance and priority were analyzed using Expert Choice 2000, a solution dedicated to priority analysis. The results are as follows. The relative importance of H2 was determined by programs, instructors, facilities, and information. In the relative importance among H3, the program type was determined as the highest factor in the program, and instructor expertise was determined as the highest factor in the instructor. The type of facility was determined as the highest factor in the facility, and the information provider was determined as the highest factor in the information. As a result of analyzing the priority of H4, it was found that the program within the sports facilities had the highest priority. Full article
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11 pages, 911 KiB  
Article
Improving Special Ability Performance of Badminton Players through a Visual Reaction Training System
by Kuei-Pin Kuo, Chun-Chin Liao and Chun-Chieh Kao
Healthcare 2022, 10(8), 1454; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10081454 - 2 Aug 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 4607
Abstract
This study investigates the effects of a visual reaction training system (VRTS) in improving the footwork of badminton players. The participants comprised 20 high school male badminton players (mean age, 17.83 ± 1.57 years; mean height, 171.4 ± 11.52 cm; mean weight, 58.76 [...] Read more.
This study investigates the effects of a visual reaction training system (VRTS) in improving the footwork of badminton players. The participants comprised 20 high school male badminton players (mean age, 17.83 ± 1.57 years; mean height, 171.4 ± 11.52 cm; mean weight, 58.76 ± 9.32 kg) who first underwent a badminton footwork agility training program and subsequently, a fixed or random six-point footwork test and an agility t-test. A one-way repeated-measures analysis of variance with Bonferroni correction was performed to identify differences in terms of response time, movement time, and total shift time. The results measured at midtest and posttest after the training intervention revealed significant improvements in reaction (p ≤ 0.01) and movement (p ≤ 0.05) time for the fixed six-point footwork test (p ≤ 0.01). The total time results for the fixed or random six-point footwork test and agility t-test at midtest and posttest after the training intervention revealed significant improvement (p ≤ 0.05). Badminton footwork agility training conducted through the VRTS enhances the ability and agility of badminton players. Therefore, researchers and coaches should evaluate the footwork of badminton players by precisely measuring and quantify their ability. Full article
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12 pages, 1447 KiB  
Article
Gold Medals, Silver Medals, Bronze Medals, and Total Medals: An Analysis of Summer Paralympic Games from 1992 to 2016
by Miguel Jacinto, Diogo Monteiro, Rui Matos and Raul Antunes
Healthcare 2022, 10(7), 1289; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10071289 - 12 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1547
Abstract
The Paralympic Games (PG) are considered one of the biggest events in the world, with increasing coverage by media and participation. The present study aimed to investigate the variation in the number of gold, silver, bronze, and totals medals in the Summer PG [...] Read more.
The Paralympic Games (PG) are considered one of the biggest events in the world, with increasing coverage by media and participation. The present study aimed to investigate the variation in the number of gold, silver, bronze, and totals medals in the Summer PG from 1992 to 2016. Data related to the results were extracted from the International Paralympic Committee to an SPSS database. Descriptive statistics and Friedman’s two-way analysis of variance by ranks were used to check the differences across medals in seven editions of the Summer PG, with the correspondent effect sizes. There was a peak in the maximum number of any type of medal between the 1996 and 2000 Summer PG and a decrease until 2008. After that, the number of any kind of medals has been increasing again. There were also significant differences with intermediate to large effect sizes when comparing more distant PG with more recent events. Several external factors can influence performance indicators (e.g., the number of medals) in a negative or positive way. An increase in the number of participants and a greater and better investment by the countries may explain part of our results. The preparation of an athlete must be based on a multidisciplinary team, and future organizing countries must take into account reports of previous events. Full article
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14 pages, 726 KiB  
Article
Tokyo 2020: A Sociodemographic and Psychosocial Characterization of the Portuguese Paralympic Team
by Tânia Mira, Diogo Monteiro, Aldo M. Costa, Pedro Morouço, Rui Matos and Raúl Antunes
Healthcare 2022, 10(7), 1185; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10071185 - 24 Jun 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2487
Abstract
The importance of practicing sports and its impact on the quality of life of people with disabilities is fundamental. Characterizing subjective well-being, resilience, and social influence in the practice of adapted sports, namely in those who participate in elite sport in Portugal, is [...] Read more.
The importance of practicing sports and its impact on the quality of life of people with disabilities is fundamental. Characterizing subjective well-being, resilience, and social influence in the practice of adapted sports, namely in those who participate in elite sport in Portugal, is truly important to support a set of initiatives to promote higher levels of practice. Thus, this study describes the Portuguese delegation at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games through sociodemographic and psychosocial (positive and negative affect, life satisfaction, resilience, and social support) variables. The study involved 31 of the 33 athletes of the Portuguese Paralympic team aged between 15 and 58 years (34.45 ± 11.7 years), with 21 men and 10 women. Individual-level sociodemographic data gave us a clear insight into the reality of adapted sport in Portugal. The high values of life satisfaction, high positive affect and low negative affect, as well as high levels of resilience and social support seem to be important variables for these athletes. The data from the present study highlighted the importance of understanding the characteristics of Paralympic athletes, in order to better understand the reality of Paralympic sport in Portugal. Full article
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17 pages, 296 KiB  
Article
Assessing the Needs of People with Disabilities for Physical Activities and Sports in South Korea
by Ahra Oh and Wi-Young So
Healthcare 2022, 10(2), 265; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10020265 - 29 Jan 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 3452
Abstract
This study’s objective was to understand the physical activities and sports-related needs of people with disabilities in South Korea and how those needs should be reflected in policy and practice to improve these people’s quality of life. Accordingly, focus group interviews were conducted [...] Read more.
This study’s objective was to understand the physical activities and sports-related needs of people with disabilities in South Korea and how those needs should be reflected in policy and practice to improve these people’s quality of life. Accordingly, focus group interviews were conducted with 35 people with disabilities who had participated in physical activities. Interviews were conducted one-on-one or in small groups of three or four. The interview questions related to their participation experiences in physical activities and sports, their difficulties with such participation, and their thoughts on what was needed to improve their participation. For data analysis, the interviews were transcribed and the content analyzed, with content triangulation performed for validity. From this, a total of 307 meaningful references were derived, comprising four categories, eight theme clusters, and 40 themes. The current physical activities and sports programs for people with disabilities in South Korea are led by the government to provide an environment for them to participate; however, to improve the quality of life for these people, these must be transformed into consumer-centric programs. To provide an opportunity for people with disabilities to choose the exercise program of their choice, it is necessary to research in advance what kind of exercise program these people want, centering on the local community. To strengthen the professionalism of disabled sports instructors, it is necessary to provide a stable environment for them in sports facilities and continue training them to build capacity. In terms of facilities, the expansion of sports facilities that can be used by people with disabilities is an urgent priority, and the opinions of users with disabilities must be actively collected and addressed in the operation of these facilities. Additionally, at the national level, information should be continuously provided through mass media and the Internet so that people with disabilities can know the importance of physical activity and sports and manage their own health. To that end, it would be helpful to conduct an in-depth analysis of countries with effective participation policies for people with disabilities and consider how these could be adapted to the situation in Korea. Full article
14 pages, 4597 KiB  
Article
The Effect of an Alternative Swimming Learning Program on Skills, Technique, Performance, and Salivary Cortisol Concentration at Primary School Ages Novice Swimmers
by Konstantinos Papadimitriou and Dimitrios Loupos
Healthcare 2021, 9(9), 1234; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9091234 - 19 Sep 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3067
Abstract
The playful training method shows positive effects on sports learning, thus the aim of the present study was to compare the effect of two different swimming learning programs. In an 8-week intervention with a training frequency of three times per week, 23 healthy [...] Read more.
The playful training method shows positive effects on sports learning, thus the aim of the present study was to compare the effect of two different swimming learning programs. In an 8-week intervention with a training frequency of three times per week, 23 healthy primary school-aged novice swimmers (13 boys, 10 girls) aged 9.0 ± 0.9 participated. They were split into control (CG) and alternative (AG) groups and evaluated on skills (Start, Sink), backstroke (BK) and breaststroke (BR) technique, performance (Skills time, Kicks Time), and salivary cortisol concentration. According to the results, “Start” had a greater percentage of success in AG, at the first (CG = 9.1% vs. AG = 58.3%, p = 0.027) and third (CG = 63.6% vs. AG = 100%, p = 0.037) measurement. Additionally, greater scores were found in technique for AG in both BK (p = 0.009, η2 = 0.283) and BR (p = 0.020, η2 = 0.231). Salivary cortisol concentration was decreased for both groups (p < 0.001) and greater in CG at the second measurement (p < 0.001). The alternative swimming learning program was found to be more efficient or equally effective, compared with the standardized method in-water skills, swimming technique and performance, and in salivary cortisol concentration. Full article
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10 pages, 1305 KiB  
Article
Are Strength Indicators and Skin Temperature Affected by the Type of Warm-Up in Paralympic Powerlifting Athletes?
by Marcelo de Aquino Resende, Felipe J. Aidar, Roberta Barreto Vasconcelos Resende, Gracielle Costa Reis, Layanne de Oliveira Barros, Dihogo Gama de Matos, Anderson Carlos Marçal, Paulo Francisco de Almeida-Neto, Alfonso López Díaz-de-Durana, María Merino-Fernández, José Vilaça-Alves, Breno Guilherme de Araújo Tinoco Cabral, Eduardo Borba Neves, Victor Machado Reis, Filipe Manuel Clemente and Nuno Domingos Garrido
Healthcare 2021, 9(8), 923; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9080923 - 22 Jul 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2502
Abstract
(1) Background: the present study aimed to evaluate the effect of different types of warm-ups on the strength and skin temperature of Paralympic powerlifting athletes. (2) Methods: the participants were 15 male Paralympic powerlifting athletes. The effects of three different types of warm-up [...] Read more.
(1) Background: the present study aimed to evaluate the effect of different types of warm-ups on the strength and skin temperature of Paralympic powerlifting athletes. (2) Methods: the participants were 15 male Paralympic powerlifting athletes. The effects of three different types of warm-up (without warm-up (WW), traditional warm-up (TW), or stretching warm-up (SW)) were analyzed on static and dynamic strength tests as well as in the skin temperature, which was monitored by thermal imaging. (3) Results: no differences in the dynamic and static indicators of the force were shown in relation to the different types of warm-ups. No significant differences were found in relation to peak torque (p = 0.055, F = 4.560, η2p = 0.246 medium effect), and one-repetition maximum (p = 0.139, F = 3.191, η2p = 0.186, medium effect) between the different types of warm-ups. In the thermographic analysis, there was a significant difference only in the pectoral muscle clavicular portion between the TW (33.04 ± 0.71 °C) and the WW (32.51 ± 0.74 °C) (p = 0.038). The TW method also presented slightly higher values than the SW and WW in the pectoral muscles sternal portion and the deltoid anterior portion, but with p-value > 0.05. (4) Conclusions: the types of warm-ups studied do not seem to interfere with the performance of Paralympic Powerlifting athletes. However, the thermal images showed that traditional warm-up best meets the objectives expected for this preparation phase. Full article
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10 pages, 679 KiB  
Article
Cut-Off Points of Visceral Adipose Tissue Associated with Metabolic Syndrome in Military Men
by Samir Ezequiel da Rosa, Amina Chain Costa, Marcos S. R. Fortes, Runer Augusto Marson, Eduardo Borba Neves, Laercio Camilo Rodrigues, Paula Fernandez Ferreira and Jose Fernandes Filho
Healthcare 2021, 9(7), 886; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9070886 - 14 Jul 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2518
Abstract
Visceral adipose tissue (VAT) has high metabolic activity and secretes a larger number of adipokines that are related to the inflammatory process. Quantifying VAT could estimate the risk of developing Metabolic Syndrome (MetS). This study was designed to determine the VAT cut-off points [...] Read more.
Visceral adipose tissue (VAT) has high metabolic activity and secretes a larger number of adipokines that are related to the inflammatory process. Quantifying VAT could estimate the risk of developing Metabolic Syndrome (MetS). This study was designed to determine the VAT cut-off points assessed by DXA associated with MetS in military men. In total, 270 (37.5 ± 6.9 years) military men from the Brazilian Army (BA) participated in the study. Anthropometric measurements, assessment of body composition by dual X-ray absorptiometry (DXA), hemodynamics and biochemical tests were performed. The Student’s t test, independent samples, Person’s correlation, ROC curve, Youden Index and positive (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) were used. The MetS prevalence was 27.4%, which means that 74 (38.0 ± 7.3 years) military men had at least three risk factors of MetS present. The cutoff point of VAT with the highest balance between sensitivity (77.0%) and specificity (69.9%) was 1025.0 cm3 (1086.0 g). An area on the ROC curve was 0.801 (p < 0.000), which was very good precision. VAT ≥ 1025.0 cm3 (1086.0 g) is associated with the risk factors of MetS and is, therefore, a predictor of the disease with good indicators of sensitivity and specificity and a robust indicator of MetS. Full article
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Review

Jump to: Editorial, Research, Other

25 pages, 695 KiB  
Review
Immunological Response to Exercise in Athletes with Disabilities: A Narrative Review of the Literature
by Maha Sellami, Luca Puce and Nicola Luigi Bragazzi
Healthcare 2023, 11(12), 1692; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11121692 - 9 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1473
Abstract
For a person with a disability, participating in sports activities and/or competitions can be a challenge for the immune system. The relationship between exercise and immunity response in disabled athletes is, indeed, extremely complex for several reasons, including (1) the chronic low-grade inflammatory [...] Read more.
For a person with a disability, participating in sports activities and/or competitions can be a challenge for the immune system. The relationship between exercise and immunity response in disabled athletes is, indeed, extremely complex for several reasons, including (1) the chronic low-grade inflammatory and immunodepression—“secondary immune deficiency”—state imposed by the disability/impairment; (2) the impact of the disability on an array of variables, spanning from physical fitness to well-being, quality of life, sleep, and nutritional aspects, among others, which are known to mediate/modulate the effects of exercise on human health; (3) the variability of the parameters related to the exercise/physical activity (modality, frequency, intensity, duration, training versus competition, etc.); and (4) the intra- and inter-individual variability of the immunological response to exercise. In able-bodied athletes, previously published data described several exercise-induced changes affecting various immunological subsets and subpopulations, ranging from neutrophils to lymphocytes, and monocytes. Broadly, moderate intensity workout is accompanied by optimal immunity and resistance to infections such as upper respiratory tract infections (URTI) in athletes. Periods of intense training with insufficient recovery can cause a temporary state of immunosuppression, which should end with a few days of rest/recovery from exercise. Disabled athletes are relatively overlooked and understudied with respect to their able-bodied counterparts. Findings from the few studies available on paralympic and disabled athletes are here summarized and analyzed utilizing a narrative approach to review and determine the major features of the immunological and inflammatory responses to exercise in this specific population. Moreover, a few studies have reported behavioral, dietary, and training strategies that can be adopted to limit exercise-induced immunosuppression and reduce the risk of infection in people with disabilities. However, given the paucity of data and contrasting findings, future high-quality investigations on paralympic and disabled athletes are urgently needed. Full article
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22 pages, 775 KiB  
Review
A Scoping Review with Bibliometric Analysis of Para-Rowing: State of the Art and Future Directions
by Luca Puce, Carlo Biz, Carlo Trompetto, Lucio Marinelli, Antonio Currà, Luca Cavaggioni, Matteo Formica, Vittorio Vecchi, Maria Chiara Cerchiaro, Khaled Trabelsi, Nicola Luigi Bragazzi and Pietro Ruggieri
Healthcare 2023, 11(6), 849; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11060849 - 13 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2099
Abstract
Para-rowing is a format of rowing practiced by people with different types of disabilities, thanks to adapted equipment set-ups and regulations. Para-rowing made its debut recently at the 2008 Paralympic Games. According to the mandate of the “International Paralympic Committee”, para-rowers should be [...] Read more.
Para-rowing is a format of rowing practiced by people with different types of disabilities, thanks to adapted equipment set-ups and regulations. Para-rowing made its debut recently at the 2008 Paralympic Games. According to the mandate of the “International Paralympic Committee”, para-rowers should be enabled to pursue sporting excellence. Therefore, rigorous research is needed in terms of well-designed, high-quality studies. To the best of our knowledge, there are no systematic appraisals of the body of scholarly evidence in the field of para-rowing. As such, a scoping review enhanced by bibliometric analyses was carried out to provide a comprehensive synthesis of knowledge related to para-rowing for the perusal of practitioners and athletes. By mining eighteen major databases, 17 studies were retained in the present review. The included studies were found to focus on a range of aspects involving health, the etiology of injuries (n = 5), psychological and physiological responses (n = 5), performance, biomechanical analysis (n = 4), and new analytical approaches for kinematic assessments and predictions of mechanical outputs in para-rowers (n = 3). The scholarly community on para-rowing consists of 78 researchers, 16 (20.51%) of whom are highly interconnected. The most prolific author was Smoljanović T., from Croatia, with three items/documents. In total, 93.6% of scholars have authored one single document. Topological features indicated a highly fragmented and dispersed, poorly connected community characterized by a high number of clusters and a low strength of connections. In terms of publication years, the first scholarly article dates back to 2008, with four articles (23.5%) published in the current year, showing an increasing interest in this para-sports discipline. Finally, gaps in current research on para-rowing were identified in terms of overlooked topics, including sports nutrition, doping, and psychological aspects in para-rowers other than those with visual impairment. Full article
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26 pages, 1561 KiB  
Review
A Bibliometrics-Enhanced, PAGER-Compliant Scoping Review of the Literature on Paralympic Powerlifting: Insights for Practices and Future Research
by Luca Puce, Khaled Trabelsi, Carlo Trompetto, Laura Mori, Lucio Marinelli, Antonio Currà, Emanuela Faelli, Vittoria Ferrando, Patrick Okwen, Jude Dzevela Kong, Achraf Ammar and Nicola Luigi Bragazzi
Healthcare 2022, 10(11), 2319; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10112319 - 19 Nov 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2115
Abstract
Paralympic powerlifting (PP), formerly known as “International Paralympic Committee” (IPC) powerlifting, is the format of powerlifting adapted for athletes with disabilities, and it differs from the version for able-bodied athletes in that it consists of bench press only. According to the mandate of [...] Read more.
Paralympic powerlifting (PP), formerly known as “International Paralympic Committee” (IPC) powerlifting, is the format of powerlifting adapted for athletes with disabilities, and it differs from the version for able-bodied athletes in that it consists of bench press only. According to the mandate of the IPC, PP athletes should be enabled to achieve sporting excellence. As such, rigorous evidence is needed. However, to the best of our knowledge, there exists no systematic assessment of the body of scholarly evidence in the field of PP. Therefore, the present study was conducted to fill in this gap of knowledge, by conducting a scoping review of the literature enhanced by a bibliometrics analysis and by mining two major scholarly databases (MEDLINE via PubMed and Scopus). The aim was to provide a review/summary of the findings to date to help practitioners and athletes. Thirty-seven studies were retained in the present study. These covered the following thematic areas: (i) warm-up strategies (n = 2); (ii) aspects of training (n = 2); (iii) physiological aspects and responses (n = 2); (iv) psychological aspects and responses (n = 2); (v) biomechanics of bench press (n = 8); (vi) recovery strategy (n = 5); (vii) impact of the disability and type of disability (n = 4); (viii) epidemiology of PP (n = 6); and (ix) new analytical/statistical approaches for kinematics assessments, internal load monitoring, and predictions of mechanical outputs in strength exercises and in PP (n = 6). Bibliometrics analysis of the PP-related scientific output revealed that, despite having already become a paralympic sports discipline in 1984, only in the last few years, PP has been attracting a lot of interest from the community of researchers, with the first scholarly contribution dating back to 2012, and with more than one-third of the scientific output being published this year (2022). As such, this scholarly discipline is quite recent and young. Moreover, the community dealing with this topic is poorly interconnected, with most authors contributing to just one article, and with one single author being a hub node of the author network. Distributions of the number of articles and the authors/co-authors were found to be highly asymmetrical, indicating that this research is still in its infancy and has great room as well as great potential to grow. Reflecting this, many research topics are also overlooked and underdeveloped, with the currently available evidence being based on a few studies. Full article
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26 pages, 5218 KiB  
Systematic Review
Prevalence and Risk Factors of Musculoskeletal Disorders in Basketball Players: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
by Silvia Cristina de Carvalho Borges, Carolina Rodrigues Mendonça, Regina Márcia Ferreira Silva, Alberto De Vitta and Matias Noll
Healthcare 2023, 11(8), 1190; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11081190 - 21 Apr 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2000
Abstract
Musculoskeletal disorders characteristically induce pain and limitations in mobility, ability, and overall functioning. In athletes, including basketball players, disorders such as back pain, postural changes, and spinal injuries are common. This systematic review aimed to evaluate the prevalence of back pain and musculoskeletal [...] Read more.
Musculoskeletal disorders characteristically induce pain and limitations in mobility, ability, and overall functioning. In athletes, including basketball players, disorders such as back pain, postural changes, and spinal injuries are common. This systematic review aimed to evaluate the prevalence of back pain and musculoskeletal disorders in basketball players and ascertain the associated factors. Methods: The Embase, PubMed, and Scopus databases were searched for studies published in English without a time limit. Using STATA, meta-analyses were performed to estimate the prevalence of pain and musculoskeletal disorders of the back and spine. Results: Of the 4135 articles identified, 33 studies were included in this review, with 27 studies included in the meta-analysis. Of these, 21 were used for the meta-analysis of back pain, 6 articles were used for the meta-analysis of spinal injury, and 2 studies were used for the meta-analysis of postural changes. The overall prevalence of back pain was 43% [95% CI, −1% to 88%]; of these, the prevalence of neck pain was 36% [95% CI, 22–50%], the prevalence of back pain was 16% [95% CI, 4–28%], the prevalence of low back pain was 26% [95% CI, 16–37%], the prevalence of thoracic spine pain was 6% [95% CI, 3–9%]. The combined prevalence of spinal injury and spondylolysis was 10% [95% CI, 4–15%], with a prevalence of spondylolysis of 14% [95% CI, 0.1–27%]. The combined prevalence of hyperkyphosis and hyperlordosis was 30% [95% CI, 9–51%]. In conclusion, we found a high prevalence of neck pain, followed by low back pain and back pain, in basketball players. Thus, prevention programs are important to improve health and sports performance. Full article
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