Journal: Sports medicine - open
Understanding of an athlete’s lifespan is limited with a much more sophisticated knowledge of their competitive careers and little knowledge of post-career outcomes. In this review, we consider the relationship between participation at elite levels of sport and mortality risk relative to other athletes and age- and sex-matched controls from the general population. Our objective was to identify, collate, and disseminate a comprehensive list of risk factors associated with longevity and trends and causes of mortality among elite athletes.
Previous research has established that general sleep screening questionnaires are not valid and reliable in an athlete population. The Athlete Sleep Screening Questionnaire (ASSQ) was developed to address this need. While the initial validation of the ASSQ has been established, the clinical validity of the ASSQ has yet to be determined. The main objective of the current study was to evaluate the clinical validity of the ASSQ.
This current opinion provides an overview of the emerging discipline of muscle-strengthening exercise epidemiology. First, we define muscle-strengthening exercise, and discuss its recent addition into the global physical activity guidelines, which were historically mainly focused on aerobic physical activity (walking, running, cycling etc.). Second, we provide an overview of the current clinical and epidemiological evidence on the associations between muscle-strengthening exercise and health, showing a reduced mortality risk, and beneficial cardiometabolic, musculoskeletal, functional and mental health-related outcomes. Third, we describe the latest epidemiological research on the assessment, prevalence, trends and correlates of muscle-strengthening exercise. An overview of recent population estimates suggests that the proportion of adults meeting the current muscle-strengthening exercise guideline (10-30%; ≥ 2 sessions/week) is far lower than adults reporting meeting the aerobic exercise guideline (~ 50%; ≥ 150 min/week). Fourth, we discuss the complexity of muscle-strengthening exercise promotion, highlighting the need for concurrent, coordinated, and multiple-level strategies to increase population-level uptake/adherence of this exercise modality. Last, we explore key research gaps and strategies that will advance the field of muscle-strengthening exercise epidemiology. Our objective is to provide a case for increased emphasis on the role of muscle-strengthening exercise for chronic disease prevention, and most importantly, stimulate more research in this currently understudied area of physical activity epidemiology.
Whether you are a morning lark or a night owl has proven to be a key contributor in the timing of peak athletic performance. Recent evidence suggests that accounting for these differences, known as one’s chronotype, results in significantly different diurnal performance profiles. However, there is limited research investigating multiple measures of performance simultaneously over the course of a socially constrained day.
CrossFit is recognized as one of the fastest growing high-intensity functional training modes in the world. However, scientific data regarding the practice of CrossFit is sparse. Therefore, the objective of this study is to analyze the findings of scientific literature related to CrossFit via systematic review and meta-analysis.
A large proportion of empirical research and reviews investigating the ergogenic potential of sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) supplementation have focused predominately on performance outcomes and only speculate about underlying mechanisms responsible for any benefit. The aim of this review was to critically evaluate the influence of NaHCO3 supplementation on mechanisms associated with skeletal muscle fatigue as it translates directly to exercise performance. Mechanistic links between skeletal muscle fatigue, proton accumulation (or metabolic acidosis) and NaHCO3 supplementation have been identified to provide a more targeted, evidence-based approach to direct future research, as well as provide practitioners with a contemporary perspective on the potential applications and limitations of this supplement. The mechanisms identified have been broadly categorised under the sections ‘Whole-body Metabolism’, ‘Muscle Physiology’ and ‘Motor Pathways’, and when possible, the performance outcomes of these studies contextualized within an integrative framework of whole-body exercise where other factors such as task demand (e.g. large vs. small muscle groups), cardio-pulmonary and neural control mechanisms may outweigh any localised influence of NaHCO3. Finally, the ‘Performance Applications’ section provides further interpretation for the practitioner founded on the mechanistic evidence provided in this review and other relevant, applied NaHCO3 performance-related studies.
Ultramarathon runners commonly believe that sodium replacement is important for prevention of muscle cramping, dehydration, hyponatremia, and nausea during prolonged continuous exercise. The purpose of this study was to measure total sodium intake to determine if these beliefs are supported.
A fundamental challenge for practitioners in high-level sporting environments concerns how to support athletes in adapting behaviours to solve emergent problems during competitive performance. Guided by an ecological dynamics framework, the design and integration of competitive performance preparation models that place athlete-environment interactions at the heart of the learning process may address this challenge. This ecological conceptualisation of performance preparation signifies a shift in a coach’s role; evolving from a consistent solution provider to a learning environment designer who fosters local athlete-environment interactions. However, despite the past decades of research within the ecological dynamics framework developing an evidence-based, theoretical conceptualisation of skill acquisition, expertise and talent development, an ongoing challenge resides within its practical integration into sporting environments. This article provides two case examples in which high-level sports organisations have utilised an ecological dynamics framework for performance preparation in Australian football and Association Football. A unique perspective is offered on experiences of professional sport organisations attempting to challenge traditional ideologies for athlete performance preparation by progressing the theoretical application of ecological dynamics. These case examples intend to promote the sharing of methodological ideas to improve athlete development, affording opportunities for practitioners and applied scientists to accept, reject or adapt the approaches presented here to suit their specific ecosystems.
Low levels of physical activity, sedentary behaviour and mental health problems are issues that have received considerable attention in the last decade. The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to investigate effects of interventions targeting school-related physical activity or sedentary behaviour on mental health in children and adolescents and to identify the features of effective interventions.
There is a need to update scientific assumptions in sport to promote the critical thinking of scientists, coaches, and practitioners and improve their methodological decisions. On the basis of complex systems science and theories of biological evolution, a systematization and update of theoretical and methodological principles to transform the understanding of sports training is provided. The classical focus on learning/acquiring skills and fitness is replaced by the aim of increasing the diversity/unpredictability potential of teams/athletes through the development of synergies. This development is underpinned by the properties of hierarchical organization and circular causality of constraints, that is, the nestedness of constraints acting at different levels and timescales. These properties, that integrate bottom-up and top-down all dimensions and levels of performance (from social to genetic), apply to all types of sport, ages, or levels of expertise and can be transferred to other fields (e.g., education, health, management). The team as the main training unit of intervention, the dynamic concept of task representativeness, and the co-adaptive and synergic role of the agents are some few practical consequences of moving from training to synergizing.