Optimization of Human Performance and Health

A special issue of Sports (ISSN 2075-4663).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2021) | Viewed by 39423

Special Issue Editor

Human Performance Research Laboratory, Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion, California State University Pomona, Pomona, CA 91768, USA
Interests: exercise; aging; skeletal muscle; dietary supplements
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is with great enthusiasm that I am announcing a Special Issue in Sports (Basel) with the goal of examining exercise and nutrition for optimal health and performance. Topics of interest include strength training, conditioning methodologies and programming, exercise technique, performance recovery, skill development, nutrition for performance and health, dietary supplements, and health- and performance-related testing. We welcome original research, meta-analysis, reviews, and brief reports.

Prof. Edward Jo
Guest Editor

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 submissions that pass pre-check are 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. Sports is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly 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 1800 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

  • strength and conditioning
  • performance
  • exercise science
  • sports science
  • health

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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9 pages, 243 KiB  
Article
Footwear Affects Conventional and Sumo Deadlift Performance
by Kevin A. Valenzuela, Kellie A. Walters, Elizabeth L. Avila, Alexis S. Camacho, Fany Alvarado and Hunter J. Bennett
Sports 2021, 9(2), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports9020027 - 11 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 7043
Abstract
Barefoot weightlifting has become a popular training modality in recent years due to anecdotal suggestions of improved performance. However, research to support these anecdotal claims is limited. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to assess the differences between the conventional deadlift (CD) [...] Read more.
Barefoot weightlifting has become a popular training modality in recent years due to anecdotal suggestions of improved performance. However, research to support these anecdotal claims is limited. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to assess the differences between the conventional deadlift (CD) and the sumo deadlift (SD) in barefoot and shod conditions. On day one, one-repetition maximums (1 RM) were assessed for thirty subjects in both the CD and SD styles. At least 72 h later, subjects returned to perform five repetitions in four different conditions (barefoot and shod for both CD and SD) at 70% 1 RM. A 2 × 2 (footwear × lifting style) MANOVA was used to assess differences between peak vertical ground reaction force (VGRF), total mechanical work (WORK), barbell vertical displacement (DISP), peak vertical velocity (PV) and lift time (TIME) during the concentric phase. The CD displayed significant increases in VGRF, DISP, WORK, and TIME over the SD. The shod condition displayed increased WORK, DISP, and TIME compared to the barefoot condition. This study suggests that lifting barefoot does not improve performance as no differences in VGRF or PV were evident. The presence of a shoe does appear to increase the DISP and WORK required to complete the lift, suggesting an increased work load is present while wearing shoes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Human Performance and Health)
11 pages, 797 KiB  
Article
Self-Selected Versus Standardised Warm-Ups; Physiological Response on 500 m Sprint Kayak Performance
by Amelia F. Dingley, Alexander P. Willmott and John F. T. Fernandes
Sports 2020, 8(12), 156; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8120156 - 30 Nov 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2922
Abstract
This study investigated the effectiveness of a self-selected (SS) warm-up on 500 m sprint kayak performance (K500) compared to continuous (CON) and intermittent high intensity (INT)-type warm-ups. Twelve nationally ranked sprint kayakers (age 17.7 ± 2.3 years, mass 69.2 ± 10.8 kg) performed [...] Read more.
This study investigated the effectiveness of a self-selected (SS) warm-up on 500 m sprint kayak performance (K500) compared to continuous (CON) and intermittent high intensity (INT)-type warm-ups. Twelve nationally ranked sprint kayakers (age 17.7 ± 2.3 years, mass 69.2 ± 10.8 kg) performed CON (15 min at the power at 2 m·mol−1), INT (10 min at 2 m·mol−1, followed by 5 × 10 s sprints at 200% power at VO2max with 50 s recovery at 55% power at VO2max), and SS (athlete’s normal competition warm-up) warm-ups in a randomised order. After a five-minute passive recovery, K500 performance was determined on a kayak ergometer. Heart rate and blood lactate (BLa) were recorded before and immediately after each warm-up and K500 performance. Ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) were recorded at the end of the warm-up and K500. BLa, heart rate, and RPE were generally higher after the INT than CON and SS warm-ups (p < 0.05). No differences in these parameters were found between the conditions for the time trial (p > 0.05). RPE and changes in BLa and heart rate after the K500 were comparable. There were no differences in K500 performance after the CON, SS, or INT warm-ups. Applied practitioners can, therefore, attain similar performance independent of warm-up type. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Human Performance and Health)
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12 pages, 5599 KiB  
Article
The Specificity of Motor Learning Tasks Determines the Kind of Skating Skill Development in Older School-Age Children
by Dominik Novak, Adam Tomasek, Patrycja Lipinska and Petr Stastny
Sports 2020, 8(9), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8090126 - 14 Sep 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3143
Abstract
The specificity of motor learning tasks for skating development in older school-age children has not been sufficiently explored. The main objective was to compare the effects of training programs using change-of-direction (COD) speed exercises and partial skating task (SeqT) training on speed and [...] Read more.
The specificity of motor learning tasks for skating development in older school-age children has not been sufficiently explored. The main objective was to compare the effects of training programs using change-of-direction (COD) speed exercises and partial skating task (SeqT) training on speed and agility performance in U12 ice hockey players. Thirteen young ice hockey males (13 ± 0.35 years, 41.92 ± 9.76 kg, 152.23 ± 9.41 cm) underwent three straight speed (4 and 30 m with and without a puck) and agility testing sessions before and after six weeks of COD training and then after a six-week intervention involving partial skating task (SeqT) training. The statistics were performed using magnitude-based decision (MBD) analysis to calculate the probability of the performance change achieved by the interventions. The MBD analysis showed that COD training had a large effect (11.7 ± 2.4% time decrease) on skating start improvement (straight sprint 4 m) and a small effect (−2.2 ± 2.4%) on improvement in agility with a puck. Partial skating task (SeqT) training had a large effect (5.4 ± 2.5%) on the improvement of the 30-m sprint with a puck and moderate effect on agility without a puck (1.9 ± 0.9%) and likely improved the 30-m sprint without a puck (2.6 ± 1.3%). COD training on the ice improves short starts and agility with a puck, while partial skating tasks (SeqT) target longer 30-m sprints and agility without a puck. Therefore, both types of training should be applied in accordance with motor learning tasks specific to current training needs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Human Performance and Health)
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12 pages, 758 KiB  
Article
The Relationship between CrossFit® Performance and Laboratory-Based Measurements of Fitness
by Elisabeth K. Zeitz, Lena F. Cook, Joshua D. Dexheimer, Srdjan Lemez, Whitney D. Leyva, Immanuel Y. Terbio, Justin R. Tran and Edward Jo
Sports 2020, 8(8), 112; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8080112 - 11 Aug 2020
Cited by 24 | Viewed by 6398
Abstract
To date, research has examined the physiological determinants of performance in standardized CrossFit® (CF) workouts but not without the influence of CF familiarity. Therefore, the purpose of this present study was to examine the predictive value of aerobic fitness, body composition, and [...] Read more.
To date, research has examined the physiological determinants of performance in standardized CrossFit® (CF) workouts but not without the influence of CF familiarity. Therefore, the purpose of this present study was to examine the predictive value of aerobic fitness, body composition, and total body strength on performance of two standardized CF workouts in CF-naïve participants. Twenty-two recreationally trained individuals (males = 13, females = 9) underwent assessments of peak oxygen consumption (VO2 peak), ventilatory thresholds, body composition, and one repetition maximum tests for the back squat, deadlift, and overhead press in which the sum equaled the CF Total. Participants also performed two CF workouts: a scaled version of the CF Open workout 19.1 and a modified version of the CF Benchmark workout Fran to determine scores based on total repetitions completed and time-to-completion, respectively. Simple Pearson’s r correlations were used to determine the relationships between CF performance variables (19.1 and modified Fran) and the independent variables. A forward stepwise multiple linear regression analysis was performed and significant variables that survived the regression analysis were used to create a predictive model of CF performance. Absolute VO2 peak was a significant predictor of 19.1 performance, explaining 39% of its variance (adjusted R2 = 0.39, p = 0.002). For modified Fran, CF Total was a significant predictor and explained 33% of the variance in performance (adjusted R2 = 0.33, p = 0.005). These results suggest, without any influence of CF familiarity or experience, that performance in these two CF workouts could be predicted by distinct laboratory-based measurements of fitness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Human Performance and Health)
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13 pages, 1623 KiB  
Article
The Effects of Loaded Plyometric Exercise during Warm-Up on Subsequent Sprint Performance in Collegiate Track Athletes: A Randomized Trial
by Kalin A. Tomlinson, Ken Hansen, Daniel Helzer, Zakkoyya H. Lewis, Whitney D. Leyva, Meghan McCauley, William Pritchard, Emma Silvestri, Monica Quila, Michael Yi and Edward Jo
Sports 2020, 8(7), 101; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8070101 - 17 Jul 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 5015
Abstract
Prior evidence demonstrates the efficacy by which plyometric activities during warm-up conditions augment the subsequent performance in power-centric exercise. We investigated the acute effects of loaded jump squats incorporated into a standard sprinters’ warm-up protocol on subsequent sprint performance in collegiate track athletes. [...] Read more.
Prior evidence demonstrates the efficacy by which plyometric activities during warm-up conditions augment the subsequent performance in power-centric exercise. We investigated the acute effects of loaded jump squats incorporated into a standard sprinters’ warm-up protocol on subsequent sprint performance in collegiate track athletes. Sprint times of 22 male and female collegiate track athletes were measured in 10-m intervals during a 30-m sprint trial following a standard sprinters’ warm-up routine with or without plyometric exercise. Subjects were tested on two separate occasions, once with loaded jump squats as the experimental treatment (two sets of eight jumps, load = 13% bodyweight) (PLYO) and once with time-equated rest as the control treatment (CON). Treatments were implemented following a standard sprinters’ warm-up routine familiar to the subjects. A dependent T-test was used for comparison of sprint interval times between conditions with a significant effect indicated by a p-value < 0.05. Sprint time did not differ between CON vs. PLYO at the 10 m (PLYO = 1.90 ± 0.12 s vs. CON = 1.90 ± 0.11 s, p = 0.66), 20 m (PLYO = 3.16 ± 0.21 s vs. CON = 3.15 ± 0.19 s, p = 0.53), and 30 m (PLYO = 4.32 ± 0.32 s vs. CON = 4.31 ± 0.28 s, p = 0.61) intervals. There was no interaction between treatment and sex, sex-specific ranking (above vs. below sex-specific mean), or sprint event (short vs. short–long vs. long) for 10 m, 20 m, or 30-m interval sprint times. At least within the limits of the current investigation, no evidence was provided to suggest that jump squats loaded at 13% bodyweight are an effective means to acutely potentiate sprint performance in collegiate track athletes. However, a further examination of responders indicates that the present loaded jump squat protocol may preferentially potentiate sprint performance in faster male athletes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Human Performance and Health)
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9 pages, 539 KiB  
Case Report
Case Study: Transition to a Vegan Diet in an Elite Male Gaelic Football Player
by Daniel Davey, Shane Malone and Brendan Egan
Sports 2021, 9(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports9010006 - 5 Jan 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 13985
Abstract
Vegan diets are increasingly of interest to athletes, but require a well-planned approach in order to mitigate the risk of potential adverse effects on nutrient intakes, and consequently performance. This case study reports the process of an elite male Gaelic football player (age [...] Read more.
Vegan diets are increasingly of interest to athletes, but require a well-planned approach in order to mitigate the risk of potential adverse effects on nutrient intakes, and consequently performance. This case study reports the process of an elite male Gaelic football player (age 25 years; height, 1.88 m; body mass, 87.8 kg; lean body mass, 73.26 kg; body fat, 11.3%) transitioning from an omnivorous diet to a vegan diet at the beginning of a competitive season. The report encompasses key considerations in the planning and provision of nutrition support in this context, in addition to iterations needed based on challenges presented by the athlete. Analysis of nutrient intake (Nutritics Dietary Analysis Software), body composition (dual X-ray absorptiometry; Lunar iDXA, GE Healthcare), and running performance during match-play (global positioning system-based tracking; STATSports Apex) each indicated that with adequate knowledge and education, and appropriate planning, commitment and iterative feedback, the athlete was able to meet nutrition targets on a vegan diet without compromising key performance indicators compared to the omnivorous diet of the previous season. We anticipate that this case study will assist practitioners to recognize the key considerations to address when working with athletes transitioning to a vegan diet. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Human Performance and Health)
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