• Home
  • KU Leuven
  • Department of Rehabilitation Sciences
  • Debbie Van Biesen
Debbie Van Biesen

Debbie Van Biesen
KU Leuven | ku leuven · Department of Rehabilitation Sciences

Ph.D, biomedical sciences

About

42
Publications
11,875
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
371
Citations
Introduction
Postdoctoral research at KU Leuven (Belgium). Specialist in the domains of ‘Adapted Physical Activity’, 'Psychosocial aspects of disability' and ‘Disability Sport’, focusing on the role of cognition in sports performance, among elite Paralympic athletes with intellectual disabilities, coaching para-athletes with ID and autism, health-enhancing physical activity and mental health.
Additional affiliations
August 2005 - present
KU Leuven
Position
  • PhD Student
January 2005 - June 2005
University of Grenoble
Position
  • Master's Student

Publications

Publications (42)
Article
Background: Athletes with intellectual disability represent a unique population who experiences the contrasting effects of cognitive deficits and benefits of sports on balance. This study investigated the combined impact of intellectual disability and sport practice on balance. Method: Center-of-pressure excursion in bipedal stance of 2 disabili...
Article
Full-text available
Although motor problems are highly prevalent in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), they remain underdiagnosed. Questionnaire-based screening for motor problems could optimize current clinical practice. This study aimed to examine the psychometric properties of the developmental coordination disorder questionnaire (DCDQ) to screen for co-...
Article
Full-text available
This study explored the association between intelligence and motor skills in children with ASD after controlling for Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and the associations between motor impairment and intellectual disability (ID) in this population. In total, 120 children with ASD (3–16 years; 81.7% boys) completed a standardized...
Article
Our aim was to identify the suitability of three assessment tools (i.e., Flanker test, Updating Word Span, and Color Trails Test) for future inclusion in the classification process of elite Paralympic athletes with intellectual disability and to assess the strength of the relation between Executive function (EF) and intelligence. Cognitive and EF a...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose We investigated cognitive-motor multitasking in 29 top-athletes with intellectual impairment (II) recruited during the European Championship Games organized by Virtus (World Intellectual Impairment Sports) and 29 control (CT) athletes matched for age, sex, sports practiced and lifetime accumulated practice hours. Methods Participants perfo...
Article
Background: This meta-analysis aims to: (i) describe the pooled prevalence of diabetes in people with intellectual disabilities, (ii) investigate the association with demographic, clinical and treatment-related factors and (iii) compare the prevalence versus age- and gender-matched general population controls. Methods: Pubmed, Embase and CINAHL...
Article
Purpose Understanding enablers of and barriers for physical activity (PA) participation in people with intellectual disability (ID) is an essential first step to develop effective interventions. This systematic review examined correlates of PA across the socio-ecological model (i.e., intra-personal, inter-personal, environmental and policy level) i...
Article
The present paper describes the conceptual basis of evidence-based classification of para-athletes with intellectual impairment (II). An extensive description of the theoretical and conceptual foundation of the system as currently conceived is provided, as are examples of its applications in the three sports included in the Paralympic programme for...
Article
Pacing places a high demand on intellectual functioning and has been found useful for classification of athletes with intellectual impairments (II). This may also be true in open-loop sports like basketball. The current study aimed to investigate the pacing behaviour of basketball players with and without II. Using time-motion analysis, the activit...
Article
Full-text available
An essential determinant for success in sports is pacing. Cognitive mechanisms like self-regulation and executive functions are strongly related to adequate pacing behaviour, and people with Intellectual Impairment (II) experience shortfalls in those skills. Previous literature in children without II revealed that pacing is at least partly dependen...
Article
Full-text available
The high prevalence of postural instability in individuals with intellectual disability (ID) warrants the need for reliable and practical postural control assessments. Stabilometry is a pos-tural control assessment that has been widely used for clinical populations. However, the scant systematic knowledge about the reliability of stabilometric prot...
Article
Background: High anxiety levels are common in people with intellectual disabilities (ID) and anxiety can affect sport performance, but sport competitive anxiety profiles in athletes with ID are unknown. Methods: A total of 303 athletes; 116 with ID (33% female, M age = 22.64, SD = 3.94), and 187 without ID (54% female, M age = 21.81, SD = 3.23),...
Article
Background: People with intellectual disability have an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases and associated premature mortality. Metabolic syndrome (MetS) and its components are highly predictive of cardiovascular diseases. The aim of this meta-analysis was to describe the pooled prevalence of MetS and its components in people with intellect...
Article
Purpose: Ingestion of sildenafil citrate has performance-enhancing effects at high altitudes above 3800 m in able-bodied individuals. It is unknown whether it can improve the performance of athletes with spinal cord injury (SCI) at moderate altitudes (<2200 m), relevant to Paralympic competitions. As most men with SCI suffer from erectile dysfunct...
Article
Full-text available
Cross-country skiing is a fast-paced, a cognitively demanding, and a popular sport within international organizations including athletes with intellectual impairment (II); however, research on how the level of II affects skiing performance is limited. The aim of this exploratory study was to compare differences in the overall performance (segment t...
Poster
Full-text available
Background: A reliable evaluation of the balance control in persons with intellectual impairment is important for varied reasons, ranging from clinical purposes to eligibility determination for sport participation. The use of force platforms to measure center of pressure (COP) excursion is one of the most common means of measuring balance. There ar...
Article
Full-text available
Athletic identity (AI) has been suggested as a variable that can have an impact on the psychological health of the athletes upon retirement. The aim of this study was to provide more insight on the transition out of elite sport by assessing and comparing the extent of AI and self-esteem in an active group (AG) and a retired group (RG) of Paralympic...
Article
Full-text available
Intelligence has long been associated with chronometric performance measures, such as reaction time (RT); however, few studies have investigated this relation in humans at the lower end of the intelligence range. The purpose of this study is to examine the inter-relation between RT, and intelligence in the population of athletes with mild to modera...
Article
Cognition is important in many sports, for example, making split-second-decisions under pressure, or memorising complex movement sequences. The dual-task (DT) paradigm is an ecologically valid approach for the assessment of cognitive function in conjunction with motor demands. This study aimed to determine the impact of impaired intelligence on DT...
Article
Background: Shot-put is one of the events in which athletes with intellectual impairment compete at the Paralympic Games, since their re-inclusion in 2012. The purpose of this study was to compare the competition performance and investigate differences in release parameters and consistency of performance between high level shot-put throwers with an...
Article
Full-text available
The development of evidence-based eligibility systems in basketball for athletes with intellectual impairment (II) requires investigating the influence of II on performance. Due to this, the present study aimed to compare game-related statistics from II and able-bodied (AB) competitions. The World Men II-Basketball Championship 2013 (n=13 games and...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: To understand how athletes invest their energy over a race, differences in pacing ability between athletes with and without intellectual impairment (II) were explored using a novel field test. Methods: Well-trained runners (n=67) participated in this study, including 34 runners with II (age = 24.4 ± 4.5 years; IQ = 63.1 ± 7.7) and 33 ru...
Article
Full-text available
The purpose of this study was to analyze the influence of intellectual impairment (II) on game-related statistics which best contribute to success in basketball. Official game-related statistics were gathered from 6 male teams (n = 63 players) during the 13 games played in the World II-Basketball Championships (Ankara 2013). Variables were normaliz...
Article
Full-text available
Pacing has been defined as the goal-directed regulation of exercise intensity over an exercise bout, in which athletes need to decide how and when to invest their energy. The purpose of this study was to explore if the regulation of exercise intensity during competitive track races is different between runners with and without intellectual impairme...
Article
Full-text available
ABSTRACT Basketball for athletes with intellectual impairment (II) requires the development of evidence-based eligibility systems in order to guarantee equal opportunities to success in this sport and also to have the possibility to be re-included in the Paralympic Program. To do this, it is required to investigate the influence of II on those fund...
Article
Full-text available
Evidence-based classification systems in Paralympic sport require knowledge of the underlying effect of impairment in a specific sport. This study investigated the relationship between cognition and tactical proficiency in 88 well-trained table tennis players with intellectual disability (ID; 29 women, 59 men, M +/- SD IQ 59.9 +/- 9.6). Data were c...
Article
Background: Previous research has shown that cognitive and motor skills are related. The precise impact of cognitive impairment on sport proficiency, however, is unknown. Aims: This study investigated group and individual differences in cognitive profiles in a large cohort of track and field athletes, basketball players, swimmers and table tenni...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the present study was to identify performance variability in basketball for players with intellectual impairment (II) and to compare it with able-bodied (AB) players. Official game statistics from the 13 games played in the Ankara World II-Basketball Championships (2013) were gathered and descriptive data, variability coefficient (VC), m...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Introduction: In the development of eligibility systems in basketball for athletes with Intellectual Impairment (II), previous studies have described how II-athletes perform in high level basketball. These results were compared with the literature in Able-bodied (AB) competitions. However, data from AB and II- competitions have not been previously...
Conference Paper
INTRODUCTION: Athletes with intellectual impairment (II) competed in a broad range of IPC sanctioned events from 1992 to 2000, but shortly after the 2000 Paralympic Games, IPC banned them because of the lack of an evidence-based classification system. During the banned period, the athletes continued competing under INAS (The International Federatio...
Article
Full-text available
The effect of intellectual impairment on sports performance has received limited attention by researchers. As a contribution to closing this gap, the purpose of the present investigation was to examine the differences in tactical proficiency between table tennis players with and without intellectual disabilities (ID). These groups were matched for...
Article
Technical skill proficiency among elite table tennis players with intellectual disabilities (ID) was investigated in this study using two approaches: an off-court simulation testing protocol and an on-court, standardized observational framework during game play. Participants included 24 players with ID (M age = 25 yr., SD = 6; M IQ = 61, SD = 9), t...
Article
A relatively small body of research addresses the effect of intellectual impairment on proficiency in sport. The aim in the present study was to determine whether the technical proficiency of table tennis players (TTP) with and without intellectual disability (ID), matched for years of training experience, are different. The sample consisted of 71...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study is to investigate athletic identity, self-esteem and physical self-perceptions in Flemish athletes with a disability, to investigate the mutual relationships between those variables, and to evaluate their stability over time. Flemish athletes (Paralympic level, n = 23; Non-Paralympic Elite level, n = 37) filled out questionnai...
Article
Full-text available
In this study the ability of elite table tennis players with intellectual disability (ID) to adapt their service/return to specific ball spin characteristics was investigated. This was done by examining the performance of 39 players with ID and a reference group of 8 players without ID on a standardized table tennis specific test battery. The batte...
Article
Full-text available
This investigation studied the consistency of the within-cycle torque pattern in hand cycling (1) in subsequent cycles, (2) between different individuals, (3) between different power output levels, and (4) with respect to fatigue. Ten nondisabled male participants performed a progressive peak arm crank ergometry test; a number of 5-minute submaxima...
Article
Down syndrome (DS) is a risk factor for metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. The greater oxidative stress described in DS can increase this risk owing to its potential deleterious effects on insulin sensitivity. We hypothesized that metabolic syndrome or its markers, at rest and during exercise, are more pronounced in young adults with DS...

Network

Cited By

Projects

Projects (4)
Project
The overall goal of the IDEAL 2.0 project is to facilitate equitable and inclusive access to sport and physical activity for people with ID and/or ASD. Building upon the outcomes of the successful IDEAL project finalized in 2020, and considering the COVID-19 situation, a new consortium was built to address the needs and priorities in the field of Inclusive and Equitable sport. IDEAL 2.0 is coordinated by KU Leuven (Belgium), in collaboration with four other research institutions specialized in ID and/or ASD-sport & research, and the global ID/ASD sport organization, Virtus. Together the consortium has a strong network of associated partners that include members of the target population and related support staff (e.g., coaches, parents, National and International Sport-related Organizations).