Special Issue "Periodization and Programming in Sports"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2020).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Robert Csapo

Guest Editor
Research Unit for Orthopaedic Sports Medicine and Injury Prevention, Private University for Health Sciences, Medical Informatics and Technology
Interests: strength training; aging; rehabilitation; return-to-sports; muscle–tendon mechanics; muscle extracellular matrix
Dr. James Fisher
Website
Guest Editor
Southampton Solent University, School of Sport, Health and Social Science, East Park Terrace, Southampton, United Kingdom
Interests: strength training; muscle hypertrophy; efficient resistance exercise (minimal dose); low-back pain and lumbar muscle strengthening; perceptual responses to resistance exercise; fatigue
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Periodization, that is, the sub-division of training programs into sequential, specifically focused training periods, is a main pillar of training planning in sports. Periodization implements structured variability into the training process, with the aim of maximizing performance in the most critical phases of the competitive season and/or improving its long-term development. Different approaches to periodization, including linear, block, and undulating models, have been proposed, and the question of which approach is most effective for the development of certain components of fitness or performance in a given athletic discipline continues to be the subject of debate. Recent publications have generally questioned the applicability of the general adaptation syndrome theory (which underlies periodization models) in humans and, consequently, the necessity of periodization for adaptation to exercise.

The aim of this Special Issue is to collate scientific evidence related to periodization and programming in sports. Both manuscripts reflecting basic science investigating the physiological basis of periodized training, and applied studies comparing the effectiveness of different training approaches (e.g., periodized vs. non-periodized, linear vs. block vs. undulating periodization) for the development of strength, endurance, or athletic performance in any discipline are invited for submission. Studies performed in high-level athletes are particularly welcome. Original articles, critical reviews, case reports/series, and communications may be considered.

We look forward to receiving your work!

Dr. Robert Csapo
Dr. James Fisher
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. 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 1000 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

  • periodization
  • programming
  • athletic performance
  • endurance
  • strength
  • hypertrophy
  • power

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
The Effect of Training Status on Adaptations to 11 Weeks of Block Periodization Training
Sports 2020, 8(11), 145; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8110145 - 31 Oct 2020
Abstract
Some controversy exists as to the most efficacious method of training to achieve enhanced levels of sport performance. Controversy concerning the efficacy of periodization and especially block periodization (BP) likely stems from the use of poorly or untrained subjects versus trained who may [...] Read more.
Some controversy exists as to the most efficacious method of training to achieve enhanced levels of sport performance. Controversy concerning the efficacy of periodization and especially block periodization (BP) likely stems from the use of poorly or untrained subjects versus trained who may differ in their responses to a stimulus. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of training status on performance outcomes resulting from 11 weeks of BP training. Fifteen males were recruited for this study and placed into strong (age = 24.3 ± 1.9 years., body mass (BM) = 87.7 ± 8.7 kg, squat: body mass = 1.96 ± 0.16), moderate (age = 25.3 ± 2.7 years., body mass = 100.2 ± 15.5 kg, squat: body mass = 1.46 ± 0.14), or weak (age = 23.2 ± 3.9 yrs., body mass = 83.5 ± 17.1 kg, squat: body mass = 1.17 ± 0.07) groups based on relative strength. Testing was completed at baseline, and after each block which consisted of 1 repetition maximum (1RM) squat, 0 kg static jump (SJ), 0 kg countermovement jump (CMJ), 20 kg SJ, and 20 kg CMJ. Absolute and relative strength were strongly correlated with rates of improvement for absolute strength, relative strength, 0 kg, and 20 kg vertical jumps. All subjects substantially improved back squat (p < 0.001), relative back squat (p < 0.001) with large–very large effect sizes between groups for percent change favoring the weak group over the moderate and strong group for all performance variables. All subjects showed statistically significant improvements in 0 kg SJ (p < 0.001), 0 kg CMJ (p < 0.001), 20 kg SJ (p = 0.002), and 20 kg CMJ (p < 0.001). Statistically significant between group differences were noted for both 20 kg SJ (p = 0.01) and 20 kg CMJ (p = 0.043) with the strong group statistically greater jump heights than the weak group. The results of this study indicate BP training is effective in improving strength and explosive ability. Additionally, training status may substantially alter the response to a resistance training program. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
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Open AccessArticle
Short-Term Detraining Does Not Impair Strength, Speed, and Power Performance in Elite Young Soccer Players
Sports 2020, 8(11), 141; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8110141 - 25 Oct 2020
Abstract
This study aimed to examine the effects of short-term detraining on the strength, speed, and jump capacities of under-20 soccer players. Twenty-four elite under-20 soccer players from the same professional club were assessed pre and post 26 days of detraining. The measurements were [...] Read more.
This study aimed to examine the effects of short-term detraining on the strength, speed, and jump capacities of under-20 soccer players. Twenty-four elite under-20 soccer players from the same professional club were assessed pre and post 26 days of detraining. The measurements were performed in the following order: countermovement jump (CMJ); 10 m linear sprint velocity; and one-repetition maximum test (1RM) in the horizontal leg-press exercise. To analyze the differences between pre- and post-tests, a paired T-test was applied. The significance level was set as p < 0.05. Soccer players exhibited a significant increase in CMJ performance (p = 0.02) and no significant differences in 10 m sprint velocity and 1RM leg-press were found after the short-term training cessation (p = 0.61; p = 0.55, respectively). We demonstrated that a short-term detraining period was capable of promoting a significant increase in the vertical jump height without inducing negative effects on the strength and speed capabilities of elite under-20 soccer players. Practitioners and sport scientists should be aware of these findings to program more effective training strategies at the beginning of the subsequent training cycle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
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Open AccessArticle
Towards a de facto Nonlinear Periodization: Extending Nonlinearity from Programming to Periodizing
Sports 2020, 8(8), 110; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8080110 - 08 Aug 2020
Abstract
Planning is paramount in sport. Among different philosophical approaches to planning, periodization is a highly popular concept that refers to structured training periods with ensuing programs encompassing moments of progressively-loaded training, followed by recovery; it is normally deemed paramount to optimize adaptations and [...] Read more.
Planning is paramount in sport. Among different philosophical approaches to planning, periodization is a highly popular concept that refers to structured training periods with ensuing programs encompassing moments of progressively-loaded training, followed by recovery; it is normally deemed paramount to optimize adaptations and performance. While planning provides generic guidelines, periodization refers to the sequencing/ordering of training periods to enforce a given plan, therefore referring to longer temporal scales, and programming refers to more micro-scale aspects. In fact, similar periodization schemes may implement distinct programming strategies. Literature on the topic has used the linear and nonlinear terms to describe the content of periodized programs. However, these concepts have not been clearly defined in the literature, which may lead to inaccurate and misleading interpretations. Moreover, nonlinear periodization is usually using nonlinear programming, but with pre-stipulated sequencing of the training periods. Finally, it can be argued that nonlinearity has been an integral part of periodization since its inception, at least theoretically. In this essay, the literature was critically reviewed to better understand the validity of the linearity and nonlinearity concepts as applied in currently proposed periodization models. In addition, a novel approach for a de facto nonlinear periodization is presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
Open AccessArticle
A Longitudinal Prospective Study: The Effect of Annual Seasonal Transition and Coaching Influence on Aerobic Capacity and Body Composition in Division I Female Soccer Players
Sports 2020, 8(8), 107; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8080107 - 30 Jul 2020
Abstract
This study assessed how seasonal transitions and coaching influence affect aerobic capacity (AC) and body composition across the annual training cycle (ATC). Eleven division 1 female soccer players were tested after five predesignated time blocks (B1–B5): post-season 2016 (B1), nine-week transition (B2), spring [...] Read more.
This study assessed how seasonal transitions and coaching influence affect aerobic capacity (AC) and body composition across the annual training cycle (ATC). Eleven division 1 female soccer players were tested after five predesignated time blocks (B1–B5): post-season 2016 (B1), nine-week transition (B2), spring season (B3), pre-season (B4), and post-season 2017 (B5). Height, weight, and body composition (fat-free mass (FFM)) were measured prior to a standardized 5 min treadmill running and dynamic movement warm up before a maximal AC test. Statistical analysis included a 4 × 5 repeated-measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) (dependent variable × time) with the Fishers Least Significant Difference (LSD) post-hoc test when relevant; data are presented as mean ± standard deviation, effect size (ES), and percent change (%). The statistical analysis revealed that the ATC had a significant main effect on AC and FFM (F3,4 2.81, p = 0.001; η2 = 0.22). There were significant increases in AC across the transition period (B1–B2) with reduced training volume (∆ + 12.9%, p = 0.001; ES = 0.50) while AC and FFM peaked after the spring season with directed concurrent training paired with adequate rest B1–B3 (∆ + 16.4%, p < 0.01; ES = 0.81). AC decreased across the pre-season with indirect training (B3–B4) (∆ − 7.0%, p = 0.02; ES = 0.50) and remained suppressed without change (p > 0.05) across the competitive season (B4–B5). Rest, concurrent training, and directed training positively affected AC, while indirect training and high training loads with little rest negatively affected AC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Training Programs Designed for Muscle Hypertrophy in Bodybuilders: A Narrative Review
Sports 2020, 8(11), 149; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8110149 - 18 Nov 2020
Abstract
Bodybuilding is a sport that requires adequate training strategies in order to maximize skeletal muscle hypertrophy. The purpose of the present review was to perform a narrative assessment of the training routines designed for muscle hypertrophy used by bodybuilders. A search was carried [...] Read more.
Bodybuilding is a sport that requires adequate training strategies in order to maximize skeletal muscle hypertrophy. The purpose of the present review was to perform a narrative assessment of the training routines designed for muscle hypertrophy used by bodybuilders. A search was carried out in the databases Pubmed/MEDLINE, Scielo, EBSCO, LILACS, SportDiscus, Web of Science, and CINAHL with the words “Resistance training” and “hypertrophy” in bodybuilders and their variations that involve the respective outcomes. Fourteen studies were identified that investigated the long-term training routines of bodybuilders. These studies demonstrate a pattern in the training organization, whereby there is a separation of training into four distinct periods: off-season, pre-contest, peak week, and post-contest. Each period has a specific spectrum of intensity load, total training volume, and exercise type (multi- or single-joint). We conclude that bodybuilding competitors employed a higher intensity load, lower number of repetitions, and longer rest intervals in the off-season than pre-contest. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
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Open AccessReview
Tapering and Peaking Maximal Strength for Powerlifting Performance: A Review
Sports 2020, 8(9), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8090125 - 09 Sep 2020
Abstract
Prior to major competitions, athletes often use a peaking protocol such as tapering or training cessation to improve performance. The majority of the current literature has focused on endurance-based sports such as swimming, cycling, and running to better understand how and when to [...] Read more.
Prior to major competitions, athletes often use a peaking protocol such as tapering or training cessation to improve performance. The majority of the current literature has focused on endurance-based sports such as swimming, cycling, and running to better understand how and when to taper or use training cessation to achieve the desired performance outcome. However, evidence regarding peaking protocols for strength and power athletes is lacking. Current limitations for peaking maximal strength is that many studies do not provide sufficient details for practitioners to use. Thus, when working with athletes such as powerlifters, weightlifters, throwers, and strongman competitors, practitioners must use trial and error to determine the best means for peaking rather than using an evidence-based protocol. More specifically, determining how to peak maximal strength using data derived from strength and power athletes has not been established. While powerlifting training (i.e., back squat, bench press, deadlift) is used by strength and power athletes up until the final days prior to a competition, understanding how to peak maximal strength relative to powerlifting performance is still unclear. Thus, the purpose of this study was to review the literature on tapering and training cessation practices relative to peaking powerlifting performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
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