Special Issue "Fitness Assessment, Athlete’s Monitoring Cycle and Training Interventions in Team Sports"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Exercise and Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 March 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Hugo Sarmento
Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Sport Sciences and Physical Education, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, 3040-156 Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: match analysis; talent identification; sports training; team sports; small-sided games
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Team sports training is progressively growing, challenging strength and conditioning coaches and head coaches. As part of a well-prepared training strategy, it is important to establish a functional relationship among fitness assessment, load, and well-being monitoring and readiness analysis to identify the consequences of training stimulus for players. Each of these topics has to date been isolated in research; however, it is important to bridge the gap between them and establish a greater and more comprehensive approach among fitness adaptations, training monitoring, and specific interventions performed. This may help us to achieve a clearer view of the big picture in terms of the consequences for players, namely, considering their exposure to successful biological adaptations or less successful cases, such as illness or injuries.  

As it is clear that more research should be done on the relationship among these dimensions and topics, the aim of the Special Issue on "Fitness Assessment, Athlete’s Monitoring Cycle and Training Interventions in Team Sports" is to publish high-quality original investigations, systematic reviews, and meta-analysis in the research field of team sports.

We look forward to receiving contributions related (but not limited) to the following topics:

  1. performance assessment and relationships between fitness measures;
  2. training load monitoring, well-being, and readiness in team sports;
  3. training interventions;
  4. complementary strategies for performance (e.g., nutrition, supplementation, psychology, injury preventions, recovery); and
  5. determinants of illness and injuries in players. We welcome papers related to evidence of successful intervention strategies. All manuscripts will be peer-reviewed by experts in the field.

Dr. Filipe Manuel Clemente
Dr. Hugo Sarmento
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • fitness assessment
  • load monitoring
  • well-being
  • readiness
  • training interventions
  • strength and conditioning
  • nutritional and supplementation strategies
  • recovery strategies
  • injury prevention
  • injuries epidemiology
  • illness
  • performance analysis

Published Papers (7 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Open AccessArticle
Heart Rate Variability Responses to a Training Cycle in Female Youth Rowers
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(22), 8391; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228391 - 13 Nov 2020
Abstract
Heart rate variability (HRV) is a reputable estimate of cardiac autonomic function used across multiple athletic populations to document the cardiac autonomic responses to sport demands. However, there is a knowledge gap of HRV responses in female youth rowers. Thus, the purpose of [...] Read more.
Heart rate variability (HRV) is a reputable estimate of cardiac autonomic function used across multiple athletic populations to document the cardiac autonomic responses to sport demands. However, there is a knowledge gap of HRV responses in female youth rowers. Thus, the purpose of this study was to measure HRV weekly, over a 15-week training period, covering pre-season and up to competition in youth female rowers, in order to understand the physiological response to long-term training and discern how fluctuations in HRV may relate to performance in this population. Measures of heart rate and heart rate variability were recorded before training each Friday over the monitoring period in seven athletes. Analysis of heart rate variability focused on time domain indices, the standard deviation of all normal to normal R–R wave intervals, and the root mean square of successive differences as markers of cardiac parasympathetic modulation. Training load was quantified by multiplying the rating of perceived exertion of the weeks training and training duration. A decrease was identified in cardiac parasympathetic modulation as the season progressed (Effect Size (Cohen’s d) = −0.34 to −0.8, weeks 6 and 11–15), despite no significant relationship between training load and heart rate variability. Factors outside of training may further compound the reduction in heart rate variability, with further monitoring of external stressors (e.g., school) in adolescent athletes. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Effects of Unloaded vs. Ankle-Loaded Plyometric Training on the Physical Fitness of U-17 Male Soccer Players
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 7877; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17217877 - 27 Oct 2020
Abstract
The aim of this study was to compare the impact of two differing plyometric training programs (loaded plyometrics (with 2.5% of body mass placed above the ankle joint) vs. unloaded plyometrics), performed biweekly for 10 weeks, on the physical fitness of elite junior [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to compare the impact of two differing plyometric training programs (loaded plyometrics (with 2.5% of body mass placed above the ankle joint) vs. unloaded plyometrics), performed biweekly for 10 weeks, on the physical fitness of elite junior male soccer players. Participants aged 16.0 ± 0.5 years were randomly assigned between unloaded plyometrics (UP; n = 12), loaded plyometrics (LP; n = 14) and control (C; n = 12) groups. Two-way analyses of performance (group x time) were assessed by 40-m sprint times; 9–3–6–3–9 m sprints with 180° turns (S180°); 9–3–6–3–9 m sprints with backward and forward running (SBF); and 4 × 5 m sprints (S4 × 5 m); four jump tests; measures of static and dynamic balance; repeated change of direction tests and the Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test. Both LP and UP enhanced sprinting performance relative to C (p < 0.05) but performance increased more in LP relative to UP (p < 0.05) in all sprints except 40 m. Change of direction times were also significantly shortened by LP relative to UP (p < 0.05) and C (p < 0.01) in all tests, with no significant differences between UP and C. Jumps heights increased similarly in both LP and UP relative to C (p < 0.05), with no significance between LP and UP. LP and UP also enhanced repeated change of direction scores relative to C (p < 0.01) with greater changes in LP than in UP (p < 0.01). Finally, LP enhanced some balance scores relative to UP (p < 0.05) and C (p < 0.05). We conclude that the introduction of 10 weeks of in-season loaded plyometrics into the regimen of U17 male soccer players yields gains in several physical performance scores relative to either unloaded plyometrics or the control training regimen. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Relationship between Anthropometric Parameters and Throwing Speed in Amateur Male Handball Players at Different Ages
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(19), 7022; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17197022 - 25 Sep 2020
Abstract
The objectives of this study were: (i) to analyse anthropometric parameters and throwing speed from seven meters in amateur male handball players of different ages; (ii) to know the relationship between anthropometric parameters and throwing. One hundred seventy-six male handball players (16.5 ± [...] Read more.
The objectives of this study were: (i) to analyse anthropometric parameters and throwing speed from seven meters in amateur male handball players of different ages; (ii) to know the relationship between anthropometric parameters and throwing. One hundred seventy-six male handball players (16.5 ± 5.1 years old) participated in the study, classified according to their age: senior (n = 35), U18 (n = 30), U16 (n = 37), U14 (n = 50) and U12 (n = 24). All participants were evaluated by anthropometric measurements (height, weight, body mass index, arm span, hand width) and throwing speed from 7 m standing. A one-way analysis of variance with a Bonferroni post hoc test was used to establish the differences between teams. Pearson’s simple correlation coefficients were calculated between analyse anthropometric parameters and throwing speed. Multiple linear regression was used to predict the throwing speed. Only BMI was related with throwing speed in all age groups (0.506 > r < 0.813, p < 0.05). Throwing speed was predicted (24–72%) with only one or two variables in each model. The selected variables were: BMI, arm span in U16 model and height U14 model, and the BMI, arm span and height are proved to be good predictors of TS in male handball players. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Comparisons of Accelerometer Variables Training Monotony and Strain of Starters and Non-Starters: A Full-Season Study in Professional Soccer Players
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6547; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186547 - 09 Sep 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
The purpose of this study was two-fold: (1) to describe weekly average values for training monotony (TM) and training strain (TS) and their variations across the full soccer season, based on the number of accelerations and decelerations; (2) to analyze the differences between [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was two-fold: (1) to describe weekly average values for training monotony (TM) and training strain (TS) and their variations across the full soccer season, based on the number of accelerations and decelerations; (2) to analyze the differences between starter and non-starter players on weekly average TM and TS values for the pre-season and three in-season periods. In total, 21 professional soccer players were evaluated over 48 weeks during the full-season. The TM and TS were calculated based on the number of accelerations and decelerations at zone 1, zone 2 and zone 3, respectively. The results revealed that starters presented higher values compared to non-starters throughout the full season for all variables analyzed (all, p < 0.05). Generally, there were higher values in the pre-season. Specifically, accelerations at zones 1, 2 and 3 revealed moderate to very large significance of the starters compared to non-starters over the full-season. Decelerations at zone 1, 2 and 3 presented moderate to nearly optimally significant greater weekly averages for starters compared to non-starters during the full season. In conclusion, the TM and TS values were higher for starters compared to non-starters through the full-season, which confirms that the training session does not provide a sufficient load to non-starter soccer players during the full-season. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Power, Muscle, and Take-Off Asymmetry in Young Soccer Players
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6040; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176040 - 19 Aug 2020
Abstract
(1) Background: The objective of the study was to check the relationship between laterality, amount of muscle mass (MM), and selected strength parameters on lower extremities and assessment of asymmetry like a result of training. (2) Methods: The screened sample consisted of soccer [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The objective of the study was to check the relationship between laterality, amount of muscle mass (MM), and selected strength parameters on lower extremities and assessment of asymmetry like a result of training. (2) Methods: The screened sample consisted of soccer players (n = 65, age = 16.0 ± 1.2 years). The legs were assessed for MM, height of reflection on a force plate, and power over 30 s Wingate anaerobic test (WAnT). The relationships between the individual parameters and age dependence were assessed using a correlation analysis. The differences between the dominant and non-dominant leg were assessed using the t-test. (3) Results: A relationship between the jump height and the mean 30 s power in WAnT (r = 0.375, p ˂ 0.01) and between the amount of MM and the absolute power of the individual legs in WAnT (r = 0.695–0.832, p ˂ 0.01) was proved. A relationship between the take-off force and the MM, or between the MM and the relative power during a velocity force load was not found. (4) Conclusions: The amount of MM in young soccer players does not affect take-off force or strength power in WAnT. The more specific the movement is, the lower the effect on the achieved power output of the concerned MM. Differences in the performance between the dominant and non-dominant leg decrease with duration of the training. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Repeated Sprint Ability Demands in U16 to U19 Highly Trained Handball Players Concerning Playing Position
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(16), 5959; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17165959 - 17 Aug 2020
Abstract
The aim of the study was to determine anaerobic capacity and characterize changes in repeated sprint ability (RSA) within youth elite handball players. For this study, 142 male athletes (17.1 ± 0.9 years) were recruited from a handball sports high school and performed [...] Read more.
The aim of the study was to determine anaerobic capacity and characterize changes in repeated sprint ability (RSA) within youth elite handball players. For this study, 142 male athletes (17.1 ± 0.9 years) were recruited from a handball sports high school and performed the RSA test on a cycle ergometer, including five 6 s all-out efforts separated by 24 s passive breaks. Maximal (Pmax) and mean (Pmean) power, highest (Wmax), and total work (Wtot) as well as power (Pdec) and work (Wdec) decrement were measured. Significant differences in RSA were noted in relation to age (greater values of Pmax, Pmean, Wtot, Wdec, and Pdec in U19 than U17 as well as greater values of Pmax, Wtot, Wmax, Wdec, and Pdec in U19 than U16 (p < 0.05)) and playing position (wing players had greater Wtot than pivot, 269 vs. 243 (J/kg) (p < 0.05), and wing players differed significantly in absolute and relative power from athletes of other positions). RSA depends on playing position and age in groups of youth handball players and the RSA test can be helpful in the selection of athletes for a playing position. The article introduces normative values for elite youth handball players, empowering coaches in the evaluation of anaerobic abilities and selection. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Effects of Match-Related Contextual Factors on Weekly Load Responses in Professional Brazilian Soccer Players
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(14), 5163; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17145163 - 17 Jul 2020
Abstract
This study aimed to quantify the weekly training load distributions according to match location, opponent standard, and match outcome in professional soccer players. Rate-of-perceived-exertion-based training load (sRPE) and distance- and accelerometry-based measures were monitored daily during 52 training sessions and 11 matches performed [...] Read more.
This study aimed to quantify the weekly training load distributions according to match location, opponent standard, and match outcome in professional soccer players. Rate-of-perceived-exertion-based training load (sRPE) and distance- and accelerometry-based measures were monitored daily during 52 training sessions and 11 matches performed by 23 players. Athletes who played ≥ 60 min during non-congested weeks were considered for data analysis. The training days close to away matches (e.g., one day before the match = MD-1) presented greater sRPE, distance-based volume measures, and mechanical work (player load) compared to the training days close to home matches (p = 0.001–0.002; effect size (ES) = medium−large). The most distant days of the home matches (e.g., five days before the match = MD-5) presented higher internal and external loads than before away matches (p = 0.002–0.003, ES = medium). Higher sRPE, distance-based volume measures, and mechanical work were found during the middle of the week (e.g., three days before the match, MD-3) before playing against bottom vs. medium-ranking teams (p = 0.001–0.01, ES = small−medium). These metrics were lower in MD-5 before matches against bottom vs. medium-ranking opponents (p = 0.001, ES = medium). Higher values of all external load measures were observed during the training session before winning matches (MD-1) compared to a draw or loss (p < 0.001–0.001, ES = medium−large). In conclusion, the training load distribution throughout the week varied considerably according to match-contextual factors. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop