Journal of Sports Sciences

Published by Taylor & Francis
Online ISSN: 1466-447X
Print ISSN: 0264-0414
Publications
Mean muscle pain scores over time (ITT population).
We compared the effectiveness of topical ketoprofen in Transfersome(®) gel (IDEA-033) with oral ketoprofen and drug-free Sequessome™ vesicles (FLEXISEQ(®) Sport; TDT 064) in reducing calf muscle soreness. One hundred and sixty eight healthy individuals with a pain score ≥3 (10-point scale) 12-16 h post-exercise (walking down stairs with an altitude of 300-400 m) were randomised to receive IDEA-033 plus oral placebo (two dose groups), oral ketoprofen plus TDT 064, or TDT 064 plus oral placebo. The primary endpoint was muscle soreness reduction from pre-dosing to Day 7. Higher pain scores were recorded with oral ketoprofen plus TDT 064 (mean ± s 462.4 ± 160.4) versus IDEA-033 plus oral placebo (434.7 ± 190.8; P = 0.2931) or TDT 064 plus oral placebo (376.2 ± 159.1; P = 0.0240) in the 7 days post-exercise. Recovery from muscle soreness was longer with oral ketoprofen plus TDT 064 (mean 91.0 ± 19.5 h) versus IDEA-033 plus placebo (mean 81.4 ± 22.9 h; P = 0.5964) or TDT 064 plus placebo (mean 78.9 ± 22.8 h; P = 0.0262). In conclusion, ultradeformable phospholipid vesicles ± ketoprofen did not retard recovery from muscle soreness. TDT 064 improves osteoarthritis-related pain and could be of interest as a treatment for joint pain during and post-exercise.
 
Abstract This study assessed the measurement error of a monitoring system, the Video Manual Motion Tracker 1.0 (VMMT1.0), during time-motion analysis of basketball players. In this study, four reliability parameters were used to assess the measurement error of the system: the systematic bias, the inter-observer reliability, the intra-observer reliability and the absolute reliability. A basketball game video was used for the analysis. To assess the inter-observer reliability, two observers analysed a player's covered distance for 50 different periods of the game. To assess the relative and absolute reliability of the covered distance, the chosen players were monitored three times by 41 qualified observers. The findings did not indicate a significant systematic bias in the measurement error using the VMMT1.0 (one-way ANOVA, P > 0.05). The intra-observer reliability of the monitoring system was rated as very high (intraclass correlation, ICC = 0.999), similar to its inter-observer reliability (Pearson product-moment correlation, r = 0.994). The absolute reliability does not appear to be significant (standard error of measurement, SEM = 0.34 m). The results showed that the measurement error of the VMMT1.0 is acceptable and comparable with that of other time-motion analysis techniques.
 
This study investigated the change in 1000-m simulated rowing performance in two matched groups of 19 competitive rowers following a 5-day period of supplementation with placebo (CON group) or creatine at a dose equivalent to 0.25 g creatine monohydrate per kilogram of body mass (BM) (EXP group). Creatine uptake was calculated from the difference between the amount fed and the amount recovered in urine during each 24-h period of supplementation. Total creatine uptake for the EXP group over the 5-day period of supplementation averaged 34.9 +/- 10.9 g (range 20.1-54.9 g), which equated to 3.54 +/- 0.93 mmol kg BM-1. The estimated creatine uptake into muscle was 38.1 +/- 10.0 (range 22.6-56.6) mmol kg dry weight-1 for these subjects. After supplementation with placebo, the CON group showed no change in 1000-m rowing performance (214.0 +/- 30.9 vs 214.1 +/- 31.5 s; P = 0.88). Of these subjects, 7 decreased and 10 increased their performance times (range - 3.1 to 2.7%). By contrast, 16 of the 19 subjects in the EXP group improved their performance times. The mean improvement in rowing performance for the EXP group was 2.3 s (211.0 +/- 21.5 vs 208.7 +/- 21.8 s; P < 0.001), an overall improvement of just over 1% (range - 0.4 to 3.4%). We conclude that in competitive rowers, a 5-day period of creatine supplementation was effective in raising whole-body creatine stores, the magnitude of which provided a positive, though statistically non-significant (r = 0.426, P = 0.088), relationship with 1000-m rowing performance.
 
Progressive power output of a female outrigger canoeist during a 1000-m time trial and 7.5-W and 15-W graded exercise test (GXT) protocols (Kerr et al ., 2008). 
Progressive V _ O 2 response of a female outrigger canoeist 
Progressive mean stroke rate (SR mean ) of a female 
Graded exercise tests are commonly used to assess peak physiological capacities of athletes. However, unlike time trials, these tests do not provide performance information. The aim of this study was to examine the peak physiological responses of female outrigger canoeists to a 1000-m ergometer time trial and compare the time-trial performance to two graded exercise tests performed at increments of 7.5 W each minute and 15 W each two minutes respectively. 17 trained female outrigger canoeists completed the time trial on an outrigger canoe ergometer with heart rate (HR), stroke rate, power output, and oxygen consumption (VO2) determined every 15 s. The mean (+/- s) time-trial time was 359 +/- 33 s, with a mean power output of 65 +/- 16 W and mean stroke rate of 56 +/- 4 strokes min(-1). Mean values for peak VO2, peak heart rate, and mean heart rate were 3.17 +/- 0.67 litres min(-1), 177 +/- 11 beats min(-1), and 164 +/- 12 beats min(-1) respectively. Compared with the graded exercise tests, the time-trial elicited similar values for peak heart rate, peak power output, peak blood lactate concentration, and peak VO2. As a time trial is sport-specific and can simultaneously quantify sprint performance and peak physiological responses in outrigger canoeing, it is suggested that a time trial be used by coaches for crew selection as it doubles as a reliable performance measure and a protocol for monitoring peak aerobic capacity of female outrigger canoeists.
 
The 20 m shuttle run test: prediction of VOzmax from maximal shuttle run speed and age. 
Predicted V0 2 max for 7000 Quebec children from maximal shuttle run speed and age (Leger et al., 1984) using equation (1) developed in this study. 
A maximal multistage 20 m shuttle run test was designed to determine the maximal aerobic power of schoolchildren, healthy adults attending fitness class and athletes performing in sports with frequent stops and starts (e.g. basketball, fencing and so on). Subjects run back and forth on a 20 m course and must touch the 20 m line; at the same time a sound signal is emitted from a prerecorded tape. Frequency of the sound signals is increased 0.5 km h-1 each minute from a starting speed of 8.5 km h-1. When the subject can no longer follow the pace, the last stage number announced is used to predict maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) (Y, ml kg-1 min-1) from the speed (X, km h-1) corresponding to that stage (speed = 8 + 0.5 stage no.) and age (A, year): Y = 31.025 + 3.238 X - 3.248A + 0.1536AX, r = 0.71 with 188 boys and girls aged 8-19 years. To obtain this regression, the test was performed individually. Right upon termination VO2 was measured with four 20 s samples and VO2max was estimated by retroextrapolating the O2 recovery curve at time zero of recovery. For adults, similar measurements indicated that the same equation could be used keeping age constant at 18 (r = 0.90, n = 77 men and women 18-50 years old). Test-retest reliability coefficients were 0.89 for children (139 boys and girls 6-16 years old) and 0.95 for adults (81 men and women, 20-45 years old).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
 
This study is a meta-analysis of 109 reports of the performance of children and adolescents on the 20-m shuttle run test (20-mSRT). The studies were performed in 37 countries and included data on 418,026 children, tested between 1981 and 2003. Results were expressed as running speed (km x h(-1)) at the final completed stage of the 20-mSRT. Raw data were combined with pseudodata using Monte Carlo simulation. The 20-mSRT performances were expressed as z-scores relative to all children of the same age and sex from all countries. An overall "performance index" was derived for each country as the average of the age- and sex-specific z-scores for all children from that country. Factorial analysis of variance was used to compare scores among countries and regions, and between boys and girls of the same age. There was wide and significant (P < 0.0001) global variability in the performance of children. The best performing children were from the Northern European countries Estonia, Iceland, Lithuania, and Finland (0.6 - 0.9 standard deviations above the global average). The worst performing children were from Singapore, Brazil, USA, Italy, Portugal, and Greece (0.4 - 0.9 standard deviations below the global average). There is evidence that performance was negatively related to being overweight, as well as to a country's average temperature.
 
The aim of this study was to examine the exercise workload of the 3rd Series of National Broadcast Calisthenics for Elementary and Middle School Students. Altogether, 120 students aged 11-17 years were randomly selected from elementary and middle schools to participate in the study. Each participant performed a cycle ergometer test to obtain maximum oxygen uptake ([Vdot]O(2max)) and maximum heart rate values. In the laboratory, oxygen uptake ([Vdot]O(2)), metabolic equivalents (METs), and heart rate were recorded continuously throughout a calisthenics session performed by the participants. Ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) were also recorded. Throughout the calisthenics session, mean percentage of [Vdot]O(2) reserve varied from 30.7% to 41.2%, mean percentage of heart rate reserve from 39.0% to 56.9%, and mean RPE from 9.0 to 10.4. The mean energy cost during most of the segments across the four routines of calisthenics was significantly higher (P < 0.05) than 3.0 METs. In conclusion, the exercise workload of the 3rd Series of National Broadcast Calisthenics for Elementary and Middle School Students session varied from low to moderate. As part of a school-based physical activity intervention project, calisthenics would help to promote an active lifestyle and health in children and adolescents.
 
Height, mass and skeletal maturity (Fels method) were assessed in 135 elite youth soccer players aged 10.7-16.5 years (only two boys were < 11.0 years). Sample sizes, years of training and current weekly training volume by two-year age groups were: 11-12 years (n = 63), 2.6 +/- 1.0 years and 4.1 +/- 1.7 h; 13-14 years (n = 29), 3.1 +/- 1.6 years and 4.5 +/- 1.7 h; 15-16 years (n = 43), 4.7 +/- 2.4 years and 6.1 +/- 2.0 h. The oldest age group included members of the national youth team. Heights and masses were compared to US reference values, and skeletal age and chronological age were contrasted. The players were also classified as late, average ('on time') and early maturers on the basis of differences between skeletal and chronological age, with the average category including boys with skeletal ages within +/- 1 year of chronological age. The mean heights and masses of 11- to 12-year-old soccer players equalled the US reference values, while those of players aged 13-14 and 15-16 years were slightly above the reference values. The mean skeletal age approximated mean chronological age in players aged 11-12 years (12.4 +/- 1.3 and 12.3 +/- 0.5 years, respectively), while mean skeletal age was in advance of mean chronological age in the two older groups (14.3 +/- 1.2 and 13.6 +/- 0.7 years, respectively, in 13- to 14-year-olds; 16.7 +/- 1.0 and 15.8 +/- 0.4 years, respectively, in 15- to 16-year-olds). Seven boys in the oldest age group were already skeletally mature and were not included when calculating differences between skeletal and chronological age. The proportion of late maturing boys in this sample of elite soccer players decreased with increasing chronological age. Among 11- to 12-year-old players, the percentages of late and early maturing boys were equal at 21% (n = 13). Among 13- to 14-year-old players, the percentages of late and early maturing boys were 7% (n = 2) and 38% (n = 11) respectively, while among players aged 15-16 years the percentages of late and early maturing boys were 2% (n = 1) and 65% (n = 28) respectively. The results of this comparative analysis suggest that the sport of soccer systematically excludes late maturing boys and favours average and early maturing boys as chronological age and sport specialization increase. It is also possible that late maturing boys selectively drop-out of soccer as age and sport specialization increase.
 
Recent international normative data for the 20-m shuttle-run test demonstrated a below-average performance index for UK children. The aims of the present study were to create an international comparison of 20-m shuttle-run test performance in a sample of English children and to identify age- and sex-specific differences in test performance. Mass, stature, body mass index, and 20-m shuttle-run test performance were measured in 2041 children aged 11-15 years (963 boys, 1078 girls). Performance was expressed as maximum running velocity and a performance index was created by generating z-scores. The shuttle-run test performance index was higher than the existing published value (-0.046, 95% confidence interval [CI] -0.070 to -0.022) for all children (0.061, 95% CI = 0.006 to 0.115), for boys (0.075, 95% CI = -0.022 to 0.171), and for girls (0.048, 95% CI = -0.010 to 0.106). Boys' relative performance increased significantly (F = 4.43, P = 0.002) throughout the measured age range, whereas girls' relative performance tended to decrease (F = 1.98, P = 0.096). The results were favourable when compared with existing values. Differences in performance index may be due to the different geographical areas from which present and past samples were drawn. Reasons for differences in the performance indices between boys and girls warrant further investigation.
 
Fig2
Abstract The aim of this study was to identify differences in time-motion, modified training impulse, body load and movement behaviour between defenders, midfielders and forwards, during an 11-a-side simulated football game. Twenty elite youth male footballers from the same squad participated in this study (age: 18.1 ± 0.7 years old, body mass: 70.5 ± 4.3 kg, height: 1.8 ± 0.3 m and playing experience: 9.4 ± 1.3 years). All data were collected using GPS units (SPI-Pro, GPSports, Canberra, Australia). The movement behaviour was measured with kinematic data, used to calculate position-specific centroids (defenders, midfielders and forwards), and processed with non-linear statistical procedures (approximate entropy normalised and relative phase). There were significant effects and interactions in all variables across the players' positions. The results showed that displacements of all players (defenders, midfielders and forwards) were nearer and more coordinated with their own position-specific centroids than with the other centroids. However, this coupling effect was stronger in midfield players and weaker in forwards. All players' dynamical positioning showed more irregularity when related to the forwards' centroid, as a consequence of their need to be less predictable when playing. The time-motion and physiological variables showed lower activity in forward players. Adding together, the results may contribute to a better understanding of players' specific performances and football complexity.
 
The aim of this study was to monitor longitudinal changes in young people's submaximal oxygen uptake (VO2) responses during horizontal treadmill running at 8 km x h(-1). The 236 participants (118 boys, 118 girls) were aged 11.2+/-0.4 years (mean +/- s) at the onset of the study. Submaximal VO2, peak VO2 and anthropometry were recorded annually for three consecutive years. The data were analysed using multi-level regression modelling within a multiplicative, allometric framework. The initial model examined sex, age and maturity-related changes in submaximal VO2 relative to body mass as the sole anthropometric covariate. Our results demonstrate that the conventional ratio standard ml x kg(-1) x min(-1) does not adequately describe the true relationship between body mass and submaximal VO2 during this period of growth. The effects of maturity and age were non-significant, but girls consumed significantly less VO2 than boys running at 8 km x h(-1). In subsequent models, stature was shown to be a significant explanatory variable, but this effect became non-significant when the sum of two skinfolds was added. Thus, within this population, submaximal VO2 responses were explained predominantly by changes in body mass and skinfold thicknesses, with no additional maturity-related increments. When differences in body mass and skinfolds were controlled for, there was still a difference between the sexes in submaximal VO2, with girls becoming increasingly more economical with age.
 
CONSORT participants fl ow diagram. 
Net effects (expressed as percentage) of the intervention for the “ FIFA 11+ ” – control group adjusted for covariates. 
Net effects (expressed as percentage) of the intervention for the “ FIFA 11+ ” – control group adjusted for covariates. 
Abstract The aim of this study was to examine the training effects of an injury prevention programme on neuromuscular control, strength and performance in male amateur football players. Eighty-one players were allocated to the "FIFA 11+" (n = 42) or a control group (CON, n = 39). The "FIFA 11+" group performed the programme 3 times a week for 9 weeks; the control group completed the usual warm-up. Primary outcomes were: time-to-stabilisation test and eccentric/concentric flexors strength. Secondary outcomes were: eccentric/concentric extensors strength, star excursion balance test, core-stability test, vertical jump, sprint, and agility. After controlling for covariates, significant between-group differences after the intervention (in favour of the "FIFA 11+" players) were found for time-to-stabilisation (-2.8%, 90% confidence interval [CI] -4.4 to -1.2%) and core-stability (-8.9%, -14.6 to -3.1%). Differences were also found for eccentric (3.8%, 1.4 to 6.2%) and concentric flexors strength (3.2%, 0.6 to 5.9%) at 60° · s(-1) but this difference was only possibly meaningful (62.4%) from a practical point of view. No substantial and/or significant differences were found for the other outcomes. Performing "FIFA 11+" for 9 weeks can improve neuromuscular control. Possible worthwhile differences were found for flexors strength but there were no substantial effects in the other performance measures.
 
Schema for each laboratory training session on days 1 to 5 and 8 to 11. 
The Recovery-Stress questionnaire Fatigue and Burnout scores pre-and post-training. Values are means. *-Different than Pre-training (P < 0.05).
Salivary cortisol (nmol·L − 1 ) responses to the 55/80 and 70 cycle bouts in the REST ( ○ ) pre- ( ▀ ) and post- ( Δ ) training exercise trials. * - Main time effect vs. Pre 55/80 ( P < 0.01) ** - Main time effect vs. Pre 70 ( P < 0.01) † - Main effect of trial pre-training greater than post- training ( P < 0.01). 
Salivary testosterone (pmol·L − 1 ) responses to the 55/80 and 70 cycle bouts in the REST ( ○ ) pre- ( ▀ ) and post- ( Δ ) training exercise trials. * - Main time effect vs. Pre 55/80 ( P < 0.05); ** - Main time effect vs. Pre 70 ( P < 0.05); † - Main effect of trial pre-training greater than post-training ( P < 0.05). 
Salivary C/T ratio responses to the 55/80 and 70 cycle bouts in the REST ( ○ ) pre- ( ▀ ) and post- ( Δ ) training exercise trials. * - Main time effect vs. Pre 55/80 ( P < 0.01); ** - Main time effect vs. Pre 70 ( P < 0.01); † - Main effect of trial pre-training greater than post-training ( P < 0.05). 
Abstract This study examined salivary cortisol and testosterone responses to two, different high-intensity, ∼30-min cycles separated by 2 h rest before and after an 11-day intensified training period. Twelve recreationally active, healthy males completed the study. Saliva samples were collected before, immediately after and 30 min after both bouts with salivary cortisol and testosterone concentrations assessed. Compared with pre-training blunted exercise-induced salivary cortisol, testosterone and cortisol/testosterone responses to both bouts post-training were observed (P < 0.05 for all). Comparing pre- with post-training the absolute exercise-induced salivary cortisol, testosterone and cortisol/testosterone decreased from 11.1 to 3.1 and 7.0 to 4.4 nmol · L(-1) (cortisol), from 407 to 258 and from 473 to 274 pmol · L(-1) (testosterone) and from 12 to 4 and 7 to 5 (cortisol/testosterone) for the first and second bouts, respectively (P < 0.05). No differences in the pre- and post-training rating of perceived exertion (RPE) and heart rate (HR) responses during the cycles or times to fatigue were found (P > 0.05). Fatigue and Burnout scores were higher post- compared with pre-training (P < 0.05). These high-intensity exercise bouts can detect altered hormonal responses following intensified training. This test could assess an athlete's current hormonal status, reductions in salivary cortisol and testosterone responses suggestive of increased fatigue.
 
Abstract The warm-up programme "FIFA 11+" has been shown to reduce football injuries in different populations, but so far veteran players have not been investigated. Due to differences in age, skill level and gender, a simple transfer of these results to veteran football is not recommended. The purpose of this study was to investigate the preventive effects of the "FIFA 11+" in veteran football players. Twenty veteran football teams were recruited for a prospective 9-month (1 season) cluster-randomised trial. The intervention group (INT, n = 146; 45 ± 8 years) performed the "FIFA 11+" at the beginning of each training session, while the control group (CON, n = 119; 43 ± 6 years) followed its regular training routine. Player exposure hours and injuries were recorded according to an international consensus statement. No significant difference was found between INT and CON in overall injury incidence (incidence rate ratio [IRR]: 0.91 [0.64-1.48]; P = 0.89). Only severe injuries reached statistical significance with higher incidence in CON (IRR: 0.46 [0.21-0.97], P = 0.04). Regular conduction (i.e. once a week) of the "FIFA 11+" did not prevent injuries in veteran footballers under real training and competition circumstances. The lack of preventive effects is likely due to the too low overall frequency of training sessions.
 
The aim of this study was to assess the use of the 4 mM blood lactate level measured during incremental treadmill exercise as an indicator of exercise performance in 11-13 year old children. Fifty girls and 53 boys (means age 12.2 +/- 0.6 years) gave informed consent to participate in the study. The children completed a discontinuous, incremental running test on a motorized treadmill. A 1 min pause separated the 3 min exercise stages during which time duplicate capillary blood samples were taken for immediate assay of whole blood lactate concentration. Cardiorespiratory variables were measured continuously during exercise using a computerized on-line system. Mean values for peak oxygen uptake were 48 +/- 7 ml kg-1 min-1 and 42 +/- 7 ml kg-1 min-1 in boys and girls respectively. The exercise intensity corresponding to a blood lactate concentration of 4 mM was interpolated from plots of % peak oxygen uptake vs blood lactate and was reached at 91 +/- 7% peak oxygen uptake in both boys and girls. The results indicate that children can exercise at intensities close to their peak oxygen uptake without accumulating high levels of blood lactate and the use of the 4 mM blood lactate level to assess and monitor exercise performance in children of this age may therefore be inappropriate.
 
Abstract The study investigated the effect of a school-based healthy lifestyles intervention on physical activity and dietary variables. In total 378 children (177 intervention, 201 control; age 9.75 ± 0.82 years (mean ± s)) took part in the 7-month intervention comprising: preparation for and participation in 3 highlight events (a dance festival, a walking event and a running event); an interactive website for pupils, teachers and parents; and vacation activity planners. Primary outcome measures were objectively measured physical activity (pedometers and accelerometers), endurance fitness and dietary variables. Multi-level modelling was employed for data analysis. The increase in physical activity was greater in the intervention group than the control group (steps: 1049 vs 632 daily steps each month; moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) total: 4.6 min · day(-1) · month(-1) vs 1.3 min · day(-1) · month(-1); MVPA bouts: 5.4 min · day(-1) · month(-1) vs 2.6 min · day(-1) · month(-1); all P < 0.05). The increase in multi-stage fitness test distance was greater for intervention participants (46 vs 29 m · month(-1) of intervention, group × month interaction, P < 0.05). There were no differences between groups in dietary variables, body composition, knowledge of healthy lifestyles or psychological variables. Thus an intervention centred around highlight events and including relatively few additional resources can impact positively on the objectively measured physical activity of children.
 
Schematic representation of the study design. R: randomization; VO 2 : oxygen uptake; T c : core temperature; MVC: maximal voluntary contraction; RFD: rate of force development; SJ: squat jump; CMJ: countermovement jump; SEBT: Star Excursion Balance Test. 
Forest plot of the single and summary effect estimates of current and previous studies measuring sprints (a), agility (b) and vertical jumps (c). MVC: Maximal Voluntary Contraction; DYNEXE: dynamic exercises; SS: static stretching; SS/DYN: combination of dynamic exercises and static stretching; DS: dynamic stretching; Team: soccer-speci fi c exercises; 5RM: 5 Repetition maximum; SSG, small-sided games; SJ, squat jump; CMJ, countermovement jump. 
Abstract The aim of the study was to examine the post-exercise effects of the "FIFA 11+" on various physical performance and physiological variables, to understand whether this programme is an appropriate warm-up for football players. Results were compared with the literature using a meta-analytical approach. Twenty amateur male football players [mean age 25.5 (s ± 5.1) years, body mass 75(8) kg, height 181(6) cm] participated in the study. They were tested twice before (control period) and once after the "FIFA 11+" for: 20-m sprints, agility, vertical jump, stiffness, isometric maximal voluntary contraction (MVC), rate of force development (RFD), and star excursion balance test. Oxygen uptake, lactate and core temperature were also measured. Pre-post warm-up differences were found for all the performance variables (from 1.0 to 6.2%; 0.015 < P < 0.001) with the exclusion of MVC (-13%; P = 0.426) and RFD (-10%; P = 0.205). After the warm-up there was an increase (0.004 <P < 0.001) in resting oxygen uptake from 325(87) to 379(142) mL · min(-1), in core temperature from 37.3(0.3) to 37.7(0.3) °C, and in lactate from 1.0(0.2) to 2.6(1.1) mmol · L(-1). In conclusion, the "FIFA 11+" prevention programme can be considered an appropriate warm-up, inducing improvements in football players comparable with those obtained with other warm-up routines reported in the literature.
 
MTHFR genotype distribution in Polish and Russian athletes (stratified by the values of relative aerobic/anaerobic energy system contribution, time of competitive exercise performance and intensity of exertion in each sport) versus control subjects – combined study.  
Abstract It has been suggested that DNA hypomethylation because of poorer effectiveness of the 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) enzyme induces muscular growth. We hypothesised that the common, functional 1298A>C polymorphism in the MTHFR gene is associated with athletic status. To test this hypothesis, we investigated the distribution of the 1298A>C variant in Polish (n = 302) and Russian (n = 842) athletes divided into four groups: endurance, strength-endurance, sprint-strength and strength-endurance, as well as in 1540 control participants. We found different genotypes (the AC heterozygote advantage) and allele distributions among sprint-strength athletes and strength athletes than the groups of sedentary controls for each nationality. In the combined study, the allelic frequencies for the 1298C variant were 35.6% in sprint-strength athletes (OR 1.18 [1.02-1.36], P = 0.024 vs. controls) and 38.6% in strength athletes (OR 1.34 [1.10-1.64], P = 0.003 vs. controls). The results of the initial and repetition studies as well as the combined analysis suggest that the functional 1298A>C polymorphism in the MTHFR gene is associated with athletic status. The presence of the C allele seems to be beneficial in sprint-strength and strength athletes. It needs to be established whether and to what extent this effect is mediated by alteration in DNA methylation status.
 
The aim of this study was to estimate the contribution of experience, body size and maturity status to variation in sport-specific skills of adolescent soccer players. The participants were 69 players aged 13.2-15.1 years from three clubs that competed in the highest division for their age group. Height and body mass were measured and stage of pubic hair development was assessed at clinical examination. Years of experience in football was obtained at interview. Six football skill tests were administered: ball control with the body, ball control with the head, dribbling with a pass, dribbling speed, shooting accuracy and passing accuracy. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to estimate the relative contributions of age, stage of sexual maturity, height, body mass and years of formal training in soccer to the six skill tests. Age, experience, body size and stage of puberty contributed significantly but in different combinations to the variance in four of the six skill tests: dribbling with a pass (21%; age, stage of maturity), ball control with the head (14%; stage of maturity, height, body height x body mass interaction), ball control with the body (13%; stage of maturity, years of training) and shooting accuracy (8%; stage of maturity, height; borderline significance, P = 0.06). There were no significant predictors for the tests of dribbling speed and passing accuracy. In conclusion, age, experience, body size and stage of puberty contributed relatively little to variation in performance in four of the six soccer-specific skill tests in adolescent footballers aged 13-15 years.
 
Scatterplot and line of best fi t (with 95% CI) showing the linear relationship between measured VO 2Peak and 1MRW 
Residual against fitted plot using the New Model.
Count distribution of Healthy Fitness Zone classification for each 1MRW aerobic capacity model.
A popular algorithm to predict VO2Peak from the one-mile run/walk test (1MRW) includes body mass index (BMI), which manifests practical issues in school settings. The purpose of this study was to develop an aerobic capacity model from 1MRW in adolescents independent of BMI. Cardiorespiratory endurance data were collected on 90 adolescents aged 13-16 years. The 1MRW was administered on an outside track and a laboratory VO2Peak test was conducted using a maximal treadmill protocol. Multiple linear regression was employed to develop the prediction model. Results yielded the following algorithm: VO2Peak = 7.34 × (1MRW speed in m s(-1)) + 0.23 × (age × sex) + 17.75. The New Model displayed a multiple correlation and prediction error of R = 0.81, standard error of the estimate = 4.78 ml kg(-1)·min(-1), with measured VO2Peak and good criterion-referenced (CR) agreement into FITNESSGRAM's Healthy Fitness Zone (Kappa = 0.62; percentage agreement = 84.4%; Φ = 0.62). The New Model was validated using k-fold cross-validation and showed homoscedastic residuals across the range of predicted scores. The omission of BMI did not compromise accuracy of the model. In conclusion, the New Model displayed good predictive accuracy and good CR agreement with measured VO2Peak in adolescents aged 13-16 years.
 
Bland-Altman plot for the directly measured _ V O 2max and estimated _ V O 2max from five equations. Solid line represents the mean difference (bias) between measured and estimated _ V O 2max . Upper and lower broken lines represent the 95% limits of agreement (mean difference+1.96 SD of the difference).  
We assessed the agreement between maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max) measured directly when performing the 20-m shuttle run test and estimated VO2max from five different equations (i.e., Barnett, equations a and b; Leger; Matsuzaka; and Ruiz) in youths. The 20-m shuttle run test was performed by 26 girls (mean age 14.6 years, s = 1.5; body mass 57.2 kg, s = 8.9; height 1.60 m, s = 0.06) and 22 boys (age 15.0 years, s = 1.6; body mass 63.5 kg, s = 11.5; height 1.70 m, s = 0.01). The participants wore a portable gas analyser (K4b2, Cosmed) to measure VO2max during the test. All the equations significantly underestimated directly measured VO2max, except Barnett's (b) equation. The mean difference ranged from 1.3 ml x kg(-1) x min(-1) (Barnett (b)) to 5.5 ml x kg(-1) x min(-1) (Leger). The standard error of the estimate ranged from 5.3 ml x kg(-1) x min(-1) (Ruiz) to 6.5 ml x kg(-1) x min(-1) (Leger), and the percentage error ranged from 21.2% (Ruiz) to 38.3% (Léger). The accuracy of the equations available to estimate VO2max from the 20-m shuttle run test is questionable at the individual level. Furthermore, special attention should be paid when comparisons are made between studies (e.g., population-based studies) using different equations. The results of the present study suggest that Barnett's (b) equation provides the closest agreement with directly measured VO2max (cardiorespiratory fitness) in youth.
 
The aims of this study were to talent transfer, rapidly develop, and qualify an Australian female athlete in the skeleton event at the 2006 Torino Winter Olympic Games and quantify the volume of skeleton-specific training and competition that would enable this to be achieved. Initially, 26 athletes were recruited through a talent identification programme based on their 30-m sprint time. After attending a selection camp, 10 athletes were invited to undertake an intensified skeleton training programme. Four of these athletes were then selected to compete for Australia on the World Cup circuit. All completed runs and simulated push starts were documented over a 14-month period. The athlete who eventually represented Australia at the Torino Winter Olympic Games did so following approximately 300 start simulations and about 220 training/competition runs over a period of 14 months. Using a deliberate programming model, these findings provide a guide to the minimum exposure required for a novice skeleton athlete to reach Olympic representative standard following intensified sport-specific training. The findings of this study are discussed in the context of the deliberate practice theory and offer the term "deliberate programming" as an alternative way of incorporating all aspects of expert development.
 
Schematic representation of the hurdles agility run. 
The crux of any soccer-specific talent identification programme is to determine early predictors of future playing success (Williams & Reilly, 200041. Williams , A. M. and Reilly , T. 2000. Talent identification and development in soccer. [Review]. Journal of Sports Sciences, 18: 657–667. [Taylor & Francis Online], [PubMed], [Web of Science ®], [CSA]View all references). We compare physiological characteristics among 14- to 17-year-old soccer academy players in terms of subsequent career progression (‘drafted’ vs. ‘non-drafted’). In a longitudinal design (2001–2010), players passed through 10 fitness tests at four age levels: 14 (n = 410); 15 (n = 504); 16 (n = 456); and 17 years (n = 272). MANOVAs showed statistically significant (P < 0.05) superior performances for drafted players in all components (‘speed’, ‘power and flexibility’, ‘coordination and endurance’) and age categories. ANOVAs revealed significantly (P < 0.013) better performances for drafted players in almost all tests, with the largest effect sizes for shuttle sprint (η 2 = 0.07–0.09), 20 m sprint (η 2 = 0.04–0.05) and medicine ball throw (η 2 = 0.05–0.11). Follow up discriminant analyses confirmed that a combination of three variables correctly classified 62.7 to 66.2% of the players. Soccer-specific speed and power of upper limbs best discriminated future playing status, irrespective of age category. It is concluded that physiological measurements at adolescence can provide useful information in terms of predicting future career progression.
 
The percentage change of plasma cathelicidin concentration after the 14-week intervention period in the vitamin D 3 supplement and placebo groups. Data are median and interquar- 
Changes in salivary secretion rates after 7 and 14 weeks of the intervention period in the vitamin D 3 supplement and placebo groups for (A) SIgA, (B) cathelicidin, (C) lysozyme and (D) lactoferrin. Data are shown as the mean ± s (lysozyme) or the median and interquartile range (SIgA, cathelicidin and lactoferrin) as appropriate. The location of signi fi cant differences from week 0 within the vitamin D 3 -supplemented group only is indicated as follows: * P < 0.05; † P = 0.05 (Dunn ’ s post hoc test applied when Friedman test P < 0.05). Signi fi cant difference from week 0 in both groups is indicated as follows: # P < 0.05. 
Heavy training is associated with increased respiratory infection risk and antimicrobial proteins are important in defence against oral and respiratory tract infections. We examined the effect of 14 weeks of vitamin D3 supplementation (5000 IU/day) on the resting plasma cathelicidin concentration and the salivary secretion rates of secretory immunoglobulin A (SIgA), cathelicidin, lactoferrin and lysozyme in athletes during a winter training period. Blood and saliva were obtained at the start of the study from 39 healthy men who were randomly allocated to vitamin D3 supplement or placebo. Blood samples were also collected at the end of the study; saliva samples were collected after 7 and 14 weeks. Plasma total 25(OH)D concentration increased by 130% in the vitamin D3 group and decreased by 43% in the placebo group (both P = 0.001). The percentage change of plasma cathelicidin concentration in the vitamin D3 group was higher than in the placebo group (P = 0.025). Only in the vitamin D3 group, the saliva SIgA and cathelicidin secretion rates increased over time (both P = 0.03). A daily 5000 IU vitamin D3 supplement has a beneficial effect in up-regulating the expression of SIgA and cathelicidin in athletes during a winter training period, which could improve resistance to respiratory infections.
 
Twelve athletes, all of whom regularly participated in middle- or long-distance running races at club to national standard, competed in simulated 1500-m races under three conditions: following ingestion of 300 mg sodium bicarbonate per kg of body mass (B); following ingestion of a placebo (100 mg sodium chloride per kg of body mass and 200 mg calcium carbonate per kg of body mass) (P); and following ingestion of neither (C). A double-blind protocol was used between the B and P trials. Each condition was replicated so that the athletes competed in six races. Ten of the athletes completed all the races. The athletes' average times for trials B, P and C were 253.9, 256.8 and 258.0 s, respectively. The data were analysed using a two-way ANOVA with replicates and Tukey tests. This revealed a difference between trial B and trials P and C (P < 0.05), but no difference between trials P and C. These findings, therefore, indicate that sodium bicarbonate can have an ergogenic effect upon 1500-m running.
 
The aim of this study was to compare the evolution of oxygen uptake (VO2) in specifically trained runners during running tests based on the 400-, 800-, and 1500-m pacing strategies adopted by elite runners to optimize performance. Final velocity decreased significantly for all three distances, with the slowest velocity in the last 100 m expressed relative to the peak velocity observed in the 400 m (77%), 800 m (88%), and 1500 m (96%). Relative to the previously determined VO2max values, the respective VO 2peak corresponded to 94% (400 m) and 100% (800 and 1500 m). In the last 100 m, a decrease in VO2 was observed in all participants for the 400-m (15.6 ± 6.5%) and 800-m races (9.9 ± 6.3%), whereas a non-systematic decrease (3.6 ± 7.6%) was noted for the 1500 m. The amplitude of this decrease was correlated with the reduction in tidal volume recorded during the last 100 m of each distance (r = 0.85, P < 0.0001) and with maximal blood lactate concentrations after the three races (r = 0.55, P < 0.005). The present data demonstrate that the 800 m is similar to the 400 m in terms of decreases in velocity and VO2.
 
The aim of the present study was to quantify the contributions of the aerobic and anaerobic energy systems to 1500- and 3000-m track running events during all-out time-trials performed individually on a synthetic athletic track. Ten 3000-m (8 males, 2 females) and fourteen 1500-m (10 males, 4 females) trained track athletes volunteered to participate in the study. The athletes performed a graded exercise test in the laboratory and two time-trials over 1500 or 3000 m. The contributions of the energy systems were calculated by measures of race oxygen uptake, accumulated oxygen deficit (AOD), race blood lactate concentration, estimated phosphocreatine degradation and some individual muscle metabolite data. The relative aerobic energy system contribution (based on AOD measures) for the 3000 m was 86% (male) and 94% (female), while for the 1500 m it was 77% (male) and 86% (female). Estimates of anaerobic energy expenditure based on blood lactate concentrations, while not significantly different (P > 0.05), were generally lower compared with the AOD measures. In conclusion, the results of the present study conform with some recent laboratory-based measures of energy system contributions to these events.
 
The main aim of this study was to examine whether goal orientations of male and female adolescents involved in an optional post-16 physical education (PE) programme were related in a conceptually consistent manner with their beliefs about the causes of success in PE. We also determined relationships between these achievement goal-belief dimensions and reported enjoyment and boredom within PE classes. Participants (n = 171) in a sixth-form college PE programme completed an inventory assessing their task and ego goal orientations, beliefs about the determinants of success in PE, and emotion in PE activities at college. Separate factor analyses of goal orientations and beliefs for male and female students revealed two goal-belief dimensions. The first dimension showed ego orientation was linked to the view that ability and deceptive tactics lead to success. The second dimension suggested task orientation was associated with the belief that success is the result of hard work and effort. This task goal-belief factor was found to be more strongly correlated with enjoyment in PE among female students than among males. For boys, the task goal-belief factor was correlated significantly and negatively with boredom in PE, but this was not the case for girls. No significant relationships emerged between the ego goal-belief factor and reported emotion in PE among the male and female participants. Facilitating task involvement and beliefs about causes of success that are fundamentally under personal control may, therefore, promote positive affective experiences in sixth-form PE, especially among female students.
 
Path diagram of theoretical model. Negative reactions 1⁄4 negative reactions to imperfection; err1–err8 1⁄4 error terms. All paths are positive. 
Path diagram of initial model ( N 1⁄4 136). Negative reactions 1⁄4 negative reactions to imperfection; mastery approach 1⁄4 log- transformed scores; err1–err8 1⁄4 error terms. All coefficients are standardized coefficients. (A table with the unstandardized coefficients is available from the first author upon request.) ** P 5 0.01, *** P 5 0.001 (two-tailed). 
Path diagram of final accepted model (N 1⁄4 136). Negative reactions 1⁄4 negative reactions to imperfection; mastery approach 1⁄4 log- transformed scores; err1 7 err8 1⁄4 error terms. All coefficients are standardized coefficients. (A table with the unstandardized coefficients is available from the first author upon request.) * P 5 0.05, *** P 5 0.001 (two-tailed). 
Research on perfectionism suggests that is it useful to differentiate between perfectionistic strivings and perfectionistic concerns. Regarding the 2 × 2 achievement goal framework, the usefulness of this differentiation was recently demonstrated in a study with university student athletes (Stoeber, Stoll, Pescheck, & Otto, 200847. Stoeber , J. , Stoll , O. , Pescheck , E. and Otto , K. 2008. Perfectionism and goal orientations in athletes: Relations with approach and avoidance orientations in mastery and performance goals. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 9: 102–121. [CrossRef], [Web of Science ®]View all references, Study 2), in which it was found that perfectionistic strivings were associated with mastery-approach and performance-approach goals and perfectionistic concerns with mastery-avoidance, performance-approach, and performance-avoidance goals. Because the study was largely exploratory and only used non-elite athletes, the aim of the present research was to replicate and extend these findings by investigating a sample of 138 young, elite ice-hockey players, while adding further measures of perfectionism and using structural equation modelling (SEM) to confirm the relationships between perfectionistic strivings, perfectionistic concerns, and the 2 × 2 achievement goals. The SEM results showed that, in elite athletes also, perfectionistic strivings are associated with mastery-approach and performance-approach goals, whereas perfectionistic concerns are associated with mastery-avoidance, performance-approach, and performance-avoidance goals. Our findings corroborate the importance of differentiating between perfectionistic strivings and perfectionistic concerns when studying perfectionism in sports, because only perfectionistic concerns (and not perfectionistic strivings) are associated with maladaptive patterns of achievement goals.
 
Average hours per year spent in the three soccer activities across each age group by elite soccer players aged up to 16 years in (a) Brazil, (b) England, (c) France, (d) Ghana, (e) Mexico, (f) Portugal, and (g) Sweden.  
Abstract The developmental activities of 328 elite soccer players aged under-16 years from Brazil, England, France, Ghana, Mexico, Portugal and Sweden were examined using retrospective recall in a cross-sectional research design. The activities were compared to the early diversification, early specialisation, and early engagement pathways. Players started their involvement in soccer at approximately 5 years of age. During childhood, they engaged in soccer practice for a mean value of 185.7, s = 124.0 h · year(-1), in soccer play for 186.0, s = 125.3 h · year(-1), and in soccer competition for 37.1, s = 28.9 h · year(-1). A mean value of 2.3, s = 1.6 sports additional to soccer were engaged in by 229 players during childhood. Players started their participation in an elite training academy at 11 to 12 years of age. During adolescence, they engaged in soccer practice for a mean value of 411.9, s = 184.3 h · year(-1), in soccer play for 159.7, s = 195.0 h · year(-1), and in soccer competition for 66.9, s = 48.8 h · year(-1). A mean value of 2.5, s = 1.8 sports other than soccer were engaged in by 132 players during this period. There were some relatively minor differences between countries, but generally the developmental activities of the players followed a mixture of the early engagement and specialisation pathways, rather than early diversification.
 
Abstract We report the morphology (height, weight, body fat, body mass index), fitness (strength, speed, agility, flexibility), and soccer-specific (dribbling) and non-specific motor coordination skills (Körper KoordinationsTest für Kinder; KTK) of 78 Belgian international youth soccer players aged 15-16 years with varying biological maturity status. The more mature players (U16 and U17) possessed higher morphological measures and outperformed their later maturing peers (U16 Futures and U17 Futures) on almost all fitness tests. However, soccer-specific and non-specific motor coordination tests did not distinguish the more mature players from the later maturing players in both age groups. When adjusted for the confounder (age at peak height velocity), multivariate analysis of covariance revealed that several morphology- and fitness-related parameters did not differ between selection groups, again in both age groups. These findings indicate that biological maturation affects morphology and fitness more so than motor coordination skills. In conclusion, to prevent the dropout of promising late maturing players, we suggest avoiding one-dimensional approaches and to include measures of biological maturity status as well as maturity independent performance tests during the talent identification and selection process.
 
Total lean body mass (a) and leg bone mineral density (b) for elite female football players, untrained women and a group of untrained women before and after 16 weeks of recreational football training. Data are presented as means ± SD. *denotes significantly different from untrained. #denotes significantly different from before training. P <0.05.  
Resting plasma osteocalcin in elite female football players, untrained women and a group of untrained women before and after 16 weeks of recreational football training. Data are presented as means ± SD. *denotes significantly different from untrained. #denotes significantly different from before training. P <0.05.  
The number of falls in the Flamingo postural balance test in elite female football players, untrained women and a group of untrained women before and after 16 weeks of recreational football training. Data are presented as means ± SD. *denotes significantly different from untrained. #denotes significantly different from before. P <0.05.  
Abstract We investigated the musculoskeletal health profile of elite female football players (ET) in comparison to untrained (UT) young women subjected to 16 weeks of football training (2 × 1 h per week). DXA scans, blood sampling, sprint testing and Flamingo postural balance testing were carried out for 27 Danish national team players and 28 untrained women, with eight women being tested after training. At baseline total BMD and BMC were 13% (1.305 ± 0.050 versus 1.159 ± 0.056 g · cm(-2)) and 23% (3047 ± 235 versus 2477 ± 526 g) higher (P <0.001) and leg BMD and BMC were 24 and 28% higher (P <0.01) in ET than in UT. Resting plasma osteocalcin was 45% higher in ET than in UT (28.8 ± 10.9 versus 19.9 ± 9.9 µg · L(-1), P <0.05). Total lean body mass was 14% higher (50.4 ± 3.3 versus 44.3 ± 4.0 kg) in ET compared with UT, with no difference in total body mass. The number of Flamingo test falls was 56-63% less (P <0.01) and 30 m sprinting speed was 31% faster (P <0.001) in ET than UT. After 16 weeks of football training for UT, lean body mass increased by 1.4 ± 0.5 kg and the number of left leg falls decreased by 29% (P <0.05). No significant changes occurred in BMD or BMC, but plasma osteocalcin increased (P <0.05) by 37%. In summary, elite women footballers have an impressive musculoskeletal health profile compared with untrained controls, but short-term football training seems to reduce the risk of falls and increase bone formation.
 
In the present study, we tried to determine the association between joint ranges of motion, anatomical anomalies, body structure, dance discipline, and injuries in young female recreational dancers. A group of 1336 non-professional female dancers (age 8-16 years), were screened. The risk factors considered for injuries were: range of motion, body structure, anatomical anomalies, dance technique, and dance discipline. Sixty-one different types of injuries and symptoms were identified and later classified into four major categories: knee injuries, foot or ankle tendinopathy, back injuries, and non-categorized injuries. We found that 569 (42.6%) out of the 1336 screened dancers, were injured.The following factors were found to be associated with injuries (P < 0.05): (a) range of motion (e.g. dancers with hyper hip abduction are more prone to foot or ankle tendinopathies than dancers with hypo range of motion; (b) anatomical anomalies (scoliotic dancers manifested a higher rate of injuries than non-scoliotic dancers); (c) dance technique (dancers with incorrect technique of rolling-in were found to have more injuries than dancers with correct technique); (d) dance discipline (an association between time of practice en pointe and injury was observed); and (e) early age of onset of menarche decreased risk for an injury. No association between body structure and injury was found. Injuries among recreational dancers should not be overlooked, and therefore precautionary steps should be taken to reduce the risk of injury, such as screening for joint range of motion and anatomical anomalies. Certain dance positions (e.g. en pointe) should be practised only when the dancer has already acquired certain physical skills, and these practices should be time controlled.
 
Age-related change in maximal ramped minute external power output ( & ) and mean power recorded during an indoor 16.1-km 
Age related change in maximal heart rate ( & ) and mean heart rate recorded during an indoor 16.1-km time-trial ( ¤ ) in 40 cyclists 
In this study, we assessed age-related changes in indoor 16.1-km cycling time-trial performance in 40 competitive male cyclists aged 25-63 years. Participants completed two tests: (1) a maximal ramped Kingcycle ergometer test, with maximal ramped minute power (RMPmax, W) recorded as the highest mean external power during any 60 s and maximal heart rate (HRmax, beats min(-1)) as the highest value during the test; and (2) an indoor Kingcycle 16.1-km time-trial with mean external power output (W), heart rate (beats min(-1)), and pedal cadence (rev min(-1)) recorded throughout the event. Results revealed age-related declines (P < 0.05) in absolute and relative time-trial external power output [(24 W (7.0%) per decade], heart rate [7 beats min(-1) (3.87%) per decade], and cadence [3 rev min(-1) (3.1%) per decade]. No relationships (P > 0.05) were observed for mean power output and heart rate recorded during the time-trial versus age when expressed relative to maximal ramped minute power and maximal heart rate respectively. Strong relationships (P < 0.05) were observed for maximal ramped minute power and time-trial power (r= 0.95) and for maximal heart rate and time-trial heart rate (r= 0.95). Our results show that indoor 16.1-km time-trial performance declines with age but relative exercise intensity (%RMPmax and %HRmax) does not change.
 
Mean blood lactate concentrations (and standard deviations; mmol Á l 7 1 ) recorded at 2.5-min intervals during the 16.1-km time- trial are illustrated for seniors ( & ) and veterans ( ~ ) ( n 1⁄4 6 for each data point except at 20 min, when n 1⁄4 5 for seniors, and at 22.5 min, when n 1⁄4 5 for veterans). Mean power outputs (and standard deviations; W) recorded for each 2.5-min interval are illustrated as plain columns for seniors and shaded columns for veterans (for minutes 17.5 and 20, n 1⁄4 5 for seniors; for minutes 20 and 22.5, n 1⁄4 5 for veterans). 
In this study, we assessed the performance of trained senior (n = 6) and veteran (n = 6) cyclists (mean age 28 years, s = 3 and 57 years, s = 4 respectively). Each competitor completed two cycling tests, a ramped peak aerobic test and an indoor 16.1-km time-trial. The tests were performed using a Kingcycle ergometer with the cyclists riding their own bicycle fitted with an SRM powermeter. Power output, heart rate, and gas exchange variables were recorded continuously and blood lactate concentration [HLa] was assessed 3 min after the peak ramped test and at 2.5-min intervals during the time-trial. Peak values for power output (RMP(max)), heart rate (HR(peak)), oxygen uptake (VO2(peak)), and ventilation (V(Epeak)) attained during the ramped test were higher in the senior group (P < 0.05), whereas [HLa](peak), RER(peak), V(E): VO2(peak), and economy(peak) were similar between groups (P > 0.05). Time-trial values (mean for duration of race) for power output (W(TT)), heart rate (HR(TT)), VO2 (VO(2TT)), and V(E) (V(ETT)) were higher in the seniors (P < 0.05), but [HLa](TT), RER(TT), V(ETT): VO2(TT), and economy(TT) were similar between the groups (P > 0.05). Time-trial exercise intensity, expressed as %RMP(max), %HR(peak), % VO2(peak), and % V(Epeak), was similar (P > 0.05) for seniors and veterans (W(TT): 81%, s = 2 vs. 78%, s = 8; HR(TT): 96%, s = 4 vs. 94%, s = 4; VO2(TT): 92%, s = 4 vs. 95%, s = 10; V(ETT): 89%, s = 8 vs. 85%, s = 8, respectively). Overall, seniors attained higher absolute values for power output, heart rate, VO2, and V(E) but not blood lactate concentration, respiratory exchange ratio (RER), V(E): VO2, and economy. Veterans did not accommodate age-related declines in time trial performance by maintaining higher relative exercise intensity.
 
This study examined the incidence, severity, and timing of gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms in finishers and non-finishers of the 161-km Western States Endurance Run. A total of 272 runners (71.0% of starters) completed a post-race questionnaire that assessed the incidence and severity (none = 0, mild = 1, moderate = 2, severe = 3, very severe = 4) of 12 upper (reflux/heartburn, belching, stomach bloating, stomach cramps/pain, nausea, vomiting) and lower (intestinal cramps/pain, flatulence, side ache/stitch, urge to defecate, loose stool/diarrhoea, intestinal bleeding/bloody faeces) GI symptoms experienced during each of four race segments. GI symptoms were experienced by most runners (96.0%). Flatulence (65.9% frequency, mean value 1.0, s = 0.6 severity), belching (61.3% frequency, mean value 1.0, s = 0.6 severity), and nausea (60.3% frequency, mean value 1.0, s = 0.7 severity) were the most common symptoms. Among race finishers, 43.9% reported that GI symptoms affected their race performance, with nausea being the most common symptom (86.0%). Among race non-finishers, 35.6% reported that GI symptoms were a reason for dropping out of the race, with nausea being the most common symptom (90.5%). For both finishers and non-finishers, nausea was greatest during the most challenging and hottest part of the race. GI symptoms are very common during ultramarathon running, and in particular, nausea is the most common complaint for finishers and non-finishers.
 
Abstract Previous research has shown that young male soccer players who are born early in a cohort are overrepresented on elite soccer teams. Selection advantages such as this have been termed 'relative age effects' (RAEs). Few studies have examined RAEs in elite women's youth soccer. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the occurrence of RAEs in the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) U-17 Women's World Cup competition and their link to playing positions. In the entire cohort of 672 players, we found significant RAEs in the geographical zones of Europe and North and Central America, no RAEs in the zones of Asia, Oceania, and South America, and significant inverse RAEs in the zone of Africa. Additionally, significant RAEs were found for goalkeepers and defenders from Europe and North and Central America. Inverse RAEs occurred for African goalkeepers, defenders, and strikers. Goalkeepers of all zones were significantly taller than players of all other playing positions. The results of this study show that remarkable RAEs do exist at elite women's youth soccer. Similar to men's soccer, there is a bias toward the inclusion of relatively older players, and a link between RAEs and playing positions.
 
Abstract Exercise performed at a competitive level could deeply modify the immune system and the cytokine response of athletes. In this report, we demonstrated that young elite female artistic gymnasts (n = 16; age: 9-15 years) showed an increase of interleukin 6 (IL-6) and tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) mRNA expression in blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), in comparison to girls performing the same sport at a recreational level (n = 16; age: 10-15 years). The increase of IL-6 and TNF-α mRNAs appeared to be directly linked to the intensity and duration of the training. Moreover, in elite athletes engaged in artistic gymnastics or in synchronised swimming (n =34; age: 9-15 years), IL-6 gene expression appeared to be modulated by the levels of circulating oestrogens: pre-pubertal athletes (n = 20; age: 11 ± 1 years) revealed a higher increase in IL-6 than pubertal athletes (n = 14; age: 14 ± 1.6 years). In pre-pubertal athletes, body mass index (BMI) percentile was inversely correlated with the increase of both IL-6 and TNF-α. The consequence of these events was the shift of the cytokine profile towards a pro-inflammatory status. These modifications, induced by training performed at an elite level, might negatively affect the growth of female children athletes.
 
Observed and expected distribution function of birth dates of 911 German U-17 first league soccer players, 2008–2009. The maximum difference (Kolmogorov-Smirnov statistics) is 20.71% at 6 June ( P 5 0.01). 
Monthly distribution of birth dates of players from the three German U-17 first leagues in the 2008–2009 season. 
The relationship between ranks and medians of birth dates of 41 teams in Germany’s three U-17 first leagues (Spearman’s r 1⁄4 0.328, P 1⁄4 0.036). 
The aim of the study was to determine whether there is empirical evidence for advantages in performance of soccer teams because of their relative age. The practice of selecting youth players according to their momentary performance leads to relative age effects, which in turn lead to inefficient talent selection. We used the median of the birth dates as a measure of the effect size of the relative age effect and the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test to assess its significance. For the 2008-2009 season, birth dates in the three German U-17 first leagues for soccer were examined (911 players). More than half of the 41 teams differed significantly from the distribution of the corresponding German cohort. There was a significant correlation between the relative age effect and success defined by teams' final rankings (Spearman's ρ = 0.328, P = 0.036). Regression analyses revealed that with a median of birth dates one month earlier the team is expected to finish 1.035 ranks better. Accordingly, selecting early born athletes is an important aspect of success in youth soccer. However, teams with no relative age effect are able to compete in the league, having the benefit to promote players with a better perspective for long and successful careers at an adult age.
 
We assessed the criterion-related validity of Cureton's equation for estimating peak oxygen consumption (VO(2peak)) from the one-mile run/walk test in endurance-trained children aged 8-17 years. Altogether, 66 physically active white children and adolescents (32 girls, 34 boys) completed a graded exercise test to volitional exhaustion and the one-mile run/walk test. Cureton's equation was used to estimate VO(2peak), and was assessed using several error measures. Agreement between measured VO(2peak) and estimated VO(2peak) was analysed by the Bland and Altman method. The correlation coefficient between measured VO(2peak) and one-mile run/walk time was -0.59 (P < 0.001) and that between measured and estimated VO(2peak) was 0.70 (P < 0.001). The mean difference between measured and estimated VO(2peak) was 10 ml . kg(-1) . min(-1) (95% CI = 9.2-11.8; P < 0.001). The standard error of the estimate was 3 ml . kg(-1) . min(-1), and the percentage error was 32%. There was a positive association between the measured and estimated VO(2peak) difference and the measured and estimated VO(2peak) mean, which indicates that the higher the VO(2peak) the higher the error of the estimate. These findings did not change markedly when the analyses were performed by sex, age group or body mass status. These results suggest that Cureton's equation systematically underestimates VO(2peak) in endurance-trained children with high VO(2peak).
 
Summary of studies measuring motivational climates in sport 
Here we provide, within a social-cognitive framework, a critical review of research on the motivational impact of different psychological climates in physical activity. Motivational, cognitive, affective and behavioural outcomes are considered in sport, school physical education and exercise. We first review laboratory and field studies that tried to manipulate the perceived structures of motivational environments and to examine the subsequent outcomes on participants' cognitive and affective responses. Then we discuss studies influenced by the work of Ames in classroom settings and involving questionnaires to measure individuals' perceptions of 'motivational climates'. The impact of mastery and performance climates on various indices of motivation is narratively reviewed, and statistically estimated effect sizes from 14 studies (n = 4484) are presented as supporting evidence. We conclude that a mastery motivational climate is associated with more adaptive motivational patterns, while a performance climate is linked with less adaptive or maladaptive motivational and affective responses. Future research should determine the personal and situational variables that can moderate the impact of such relationships. Furthermore, a broader perspective is proposed, to understand the creation of perceived motivational climates, which is based on the integration of political, cultural, coaching and parental influences.
 
Currently, direct empirical evidence exists about the amount of mechanical load that climbers apply to each finger during several hand grips specific to sport climbing, but not yet in a specific hanging position. The objectives of this study are a) to draw and build a solid and rigid support that simulates the real action of a hand grip in a hanging position in sport climbing, to enable the measurement of the mechanical load endured by the fingers in a hanging position and in addition, b) to describe the distribution of mechanical load among fingers as a function of the level of climbing during different hand grips in a hanging position. Thirty young male participants took part in the initial phase of reliability of the measurements, while another 64 male climbers participated in the subsequent study phase to check the relations between independent and dependent variables. The level of on sight climbing and the total practice experience were used to define the groups. The research task consisted of performing hanging positions on the created support in order to measure the mechanical load endured by the fingers in the three most characteristic hand grips in climbing (crimp, half crimp and slope). It has been concluded that the performance level of the climbers had no influence on the production of a pattern of differentiated finger mechanical load during the research task.
 
A comparison of the under-18 (U-18) and under-16 (U-16) squads of the Canadian national soccer team with a representative sample of Canadians (Canada Fitness Survey, 1983) showed a tendency for the development or selection of the older players in teams of stature (U-18, 175.8 cm; U-16, 171.1 cm; CFS, 170.9 cm) and lean body mass (U-18, 63.4; U-16, 57.9; CFS, 54.2 kg). The larger lean mass of the older players could not be explained simply by size. The U-18s also showed greater isokinetic leg extension force (particularly for rapid movements) and explosive strength (vertical jump) relative to the younger players, although the knee extension force was less than in some classes of athlete. Part of the gain in mass seems due to local training of the hip and leg muscles and part to a more general muscular development. Contrary to some reports, the hip flexibility of the Canadian players (sit and reach test) was greater than for a national sample; this may be important in avoiding soft tissue injuries to the legs. However, aerobic power (58.3 +/- 5.3 ml kg-1 min-1) and body fat (8.0 +/- 1.1%) were unremarkable.
 
Bland-Altman plots depicting measurement bias of XL-18 pedometer. (A) XL-18 worn in the left pocket under controlled condition; (B) XL-18 pedometer worn in the right pocket under controlled condition; (C) XL-18 pedometer under free-living condition; (D) XL-18 pedometer worn in the left versus right pockets. XL-18 solid horizontal line = mean error score, dashed lines = 95% predicted intervals. 
Abstract The primary aim was to examine the criterion and construct validity and test-retest reliability of the Lifesource XL-18 pedometer (A&D Medical, Toronto, ON, Canada) for measuring steps under controlled and free-living activities. The influence of body mass index, waist size and walking speed on the criterion validity of XL-18 was also explored. Forty adults (35-74 years) performed a 6-min walk test in the controlled condition, and the criterion validity of XL-18 was assessed by comparing it to steps counted manually. Thirty-five adults participated in the free-living condition and the construct validity of XL-18 was assessed by comparing it to Yamax SW-200 (YAMAX Health & Sports, Inc., San Antonio, TX, USA). During the controlled condition, XL-18 did not significantly differ from criterion (P > 0.05) and no systematic error was found using Bland-Altman analysis. The accuracy of XL-18 decreased with slower walking speed (P = 0.001). During the free-living condition, Bland-Altman analysis revealed that XL-18 overestimated daily steps by 327 ± 118 than Yamax (P = 0.004). However, the absolute percent error (APE) (6.5 ± 0.58%) was still within an acceptable range. XL-18 did not differ statistically between pant pockets. XL-18 is suitable for measuring steps in controlled and free-living conditions. However, caution may be required when interpreting the steps recorded under slower speeds and free-living conditions.
 
Thermoregulatory responses between trials at 308C and 188C (mean+s; n = 16)
Sweat lactate reflects eccrine gland metabolism. However, the metabolic tendencies of eccrine glands in a hot versus thermoneutral environment are not well understood. Sixteen male volunteers completed a maximal cycling trial and two 60-min cycling trials [30 degrees C = 30 +/- 1 degrees C and 18 degrees C = 18 +/- 1 degrees C wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT)]. The participants were requested to maintain a cadence of 60 rev min(-1) with the intensity individualized at approximately 90% of the ventilatory threshold. Sweat samples at 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 and 60 min were analysed for lactate concentration. Sweat rate at 30 degrees C (1380 +/- 325 ml x h(-1)) was significantly greater (P < 0.05) than at 18 degrees C (632 +/- 311 ml x h(-1)). Sweat lactate concentration was significantly greater (P < 0.05) at each time point during the 18 degrees C trial, with values between trials tending to converge across time. During the 30 degrees C trial, both heart rate (20, 30, 40, 50 and 60 min) and rectal temperature (30, 40, 50 and 60 min) were significantly higher than in the 18 degrees C trial. Higher sweat lactate concentrations coupled with lower sweat rates may indicate a greater relative contribution of oxygen-independent metabolism within eccrine glands during exercise at 18 degrees C. Decreases in sweat lactate concentration across time suggest either greater dilution due to greater sweat volume or increased reliance on aerobic metabolism within eccrine glands. The convergence of lactate concentrations between trials may indicate that time-dependent modifications in sweat gland metabolism occur at different rates contingent partially on environmental conditions.
 
Abstract This study aimed to produce age- and sex-specific physical fitness reference data for Portuguese youth; to report the prevalence of youth in the healthy zone of physical fitness according to the FITNESSGRAM(®) criteria; to verify the agreement between the Portuguese physical fitness percentiles and the FITNESSGRAM(®) healthy zones. In 2008, 22,048 Portuguese children and adolescents (10-18 years) were evaluated. Physical fitness (curl-ups, push-ups, 20-m shuttle run and modified-back-saver-sit-and-reach tests) was evaluated using the FITNESSGRAM(®) Test Battery 8.0. Smoothed percentile curves were estimated using Cole's LMS method. Boys consistently outperformed girls in every physical fitness test, except for the modified-back-saver-sit-and-reach tests. In both sexes and for all physical fitness tests, higher percentile values were observed at older ages. The 50th percentile of all physical fitness tests had the highest accuracy to discriminate between under healthy zone and healthy zone of the FITNESSGRAM(®). Portuguese schools and physical education teachers may considerer the 50th percentile for age and sex or the FITNESSGRAM(®) criteria for classifying participants in the healthy zone as acceptable cut-offs, above which youth should be considered fit. These reference values can be used as normative data and for baseline values for subsequent surveillance of the physical fitness of Portuguese youth.
 
Descriptive data from training diaries of the long walking (LW) and repetitive short 
Forty-nine previously sedentary or low active individuals aged 40-71 years were allocated to three groups. The long walking group participated in an 18-week walking programme which consisted of walks lasting 20-40 min; the repetitive short walking group completed walks of between 10 and 15 min, up to three times a day, with no less than 120 min between each walk; and the control group maintained their low level of activity. Both walking programmes began at a prescribed 60 min x week(-1), which increased steadily up to 200 min x week(-1) by week 12. During the study, the long walking group walked for an estimated 2514 min (139 min x week(-1)), expending an estimated 67.5 MJ (3.72 MJ x week(-1)) at an estimated 73% of their age-predicted maximum heart rate and 68% of their estimated VO2max. The repetitive short walking group walked for an estimated 2476 min (135 min x week(-1)), expending an estimated 58.5 MJ (3.17 MJ x week(-1)) at an estimated 71% of their age-predicted maximum heart rate and 65% of their estimated VO2max. The results showed a statistically significant reduction in heart rate during a standardized step test (pre- vs post-intervention) in both walking groups, indicating an improvement in aerobic fitness, although the control group showed a higher average heart rate during the post-intervention test, indicating reduced fitness. When compared with the male subjects pre-intervention, the females possessed more favourable levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (P< 0.001), apolipoprotein (apo) AI (P < 0.001) and ratios of total cholesterol:HDL cholesterol (P< 0.02) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol: HDL cholesterol (P< 0.02). Compared with the controls post-intervention, the walking groups showed no statistically significant changes in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, apo AI, apo AII, apo B, or the ratios of total cholesterol: HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol: HDL cholesterol, apo AI: apo B or apo AI: apo AII (P > 0.05). Relative to the walking groups, factor XIIa increased in the control group (P < 0.05). We conclude that, although both walking programmes appeared to improve aerobic fitness, there was no evidence of improvements in the blood lipids or associated apolipoproteins of the walking groups. Further analysis indicated that this apparent lack of change may have been related to the subjects' relatively good pre-intervention blood lipid profiles, which restricted the potential for change. The implications of the observed changes in the coagulation/fibrinolytic factors remain unclear.
 
We evaluated (1) the test-retest reliability of the Wingate test conducted on a rowing ergometer, and (2) the sensitivity of this test in determining the differences in performance attained by 12- to 18-year-old rowers. Altogether, 297 male rowers aged 12.0-18.9 years (mean ± s: 14.8 ± 1.7) completed a maximal 30-s test on a rowing ergometer, and 80 rowers representing all age groups were retested after 5-7 days. No change was evident in participants' performance in terms of mean power output (P = 0.726; Cohen's d = 0.04), maximal power output (P = 0.567; Cohen's d = 0.06), and minimum power output (P = 0.318; Cohen's d = 0.11) in the second test. The intra-class correlation coefficients were high (≥0.973) and coefficients of variation were low (≤7.3%). A series of analyses of variance were used to compare the performances among 12- to 18-year-old rowers, and age-related increases in performance were evident (P < 0.001; Cohen's d = 1.91-1.96). The age-related increases in performance were similar, although reduced, when the effects of body mass were partitioned out when using analysis of covariance (P < 0.001; Cohen's d = 0.82-0.85). The results suggest that: (1) the described test is reliable and can be used for maximal-intensity exercise assessment in youth rowing, and (2) it discriminates performance among 12- to-18-year-old rowers.
 
Top-cited authors
Kristin S Ondrak
Christopher Carling
  • Fédération Française de Football
Barry Drust
  • University of Birmingham
Asker Jeukendrup
  • Loughborough University
Peter Krustrup
  • University of Southern Denmark