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Proactive Autonomous Assignments as Pedagogical Responses to the Rise of Artificial Intelligence Solutions in Sport Management Teaching Practice

Antti Kauppinen

Introducing ChatGPT offered higher education students a chance to use artificial intelligence to automatically generate assignment texts, and some might cheat in behaviorist tasks by using generative artificial intelligence. However, the introduction of ChatGPT could also lead instructors to expect more (rather than less) academic integrity in terms of their students’ assignment preparation. That is especially crucial in sport management education, where many instructors apply experiential learning. This essay suggests theory-driven content for proactive autonomous project assignments, addressing some students applying ChatGPT when generating experiential assignment content. The target of such projects is to ensure the greatest possible academic integrity and that students perceive a satisfactory return on their resources invested in education.

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Unpacking Ableism: Perspectives From the Chilean Physical Education Discourse

Fabián Arroyo-Rojas

In this article, I reflect on the presence of ableism in the discourse surrounding physical education in Chile. The purpose of this article was to highlight three areas where ableism is ingrained. First, I examined historical actions within the Chilean physical education system that prioritize White ideals and able-bodied individuals. Second, I examined curriculum and evaluation recommendations that overlook the unique needs of disabled students. Finally, I critique pedagogical practices that, under the guise of inclusion, implicitly strive to meet normative levels of functionality. In conclusion, ableism intersects with colonialism in the Global South, specifically Latin America, leading to unreasonable expectations for all students, including disabled students, in the realm of physical education.

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Bidirectional Relationship Over Time Between Body Mass Index and Fundamental Movement Skill Domains Measured by a Process-Oriented Method in Childhood: A 3-Year Longitudinal Study

Maria Kasanen, Arto Laukkanen, Donna Niemistö, Asko Tolvanen, Francisco Ortega, and Arja Sääkslahti

The worldwide increase in childhood overweight and obesity underscores the need to study variables like fundamental movement skill (FMS) levels from early childhood. This study investigated the bidirectional longitudinal relationship between body mass index (BMI) and process-oriented FMSs, including locomotor skills and object control skills in 675 Finnish children, aged 3–8 years at baseline (50.5% female, mean age 5.5 years) over 3 years. Standardized BMI-for-age SD scores (BMI SDS z-scores) followed Finnish national standards. The FMS assessment comprised four subtests from the Test of Gross Motor Development, third edition. Age-adjusted standardized residuals of FMS or skill domains and BMI SDS z-scores were used in a two-level, cross-classified, cross-lagged regression analysis, accounting for gender, and baseline value of the dependent variables. The results showed no statistically significant longitudinal relationship between BMI and FMS or its skill domains for either gender in either direction. This suggests that BMI and process-oriented FMS, encompassing locomotor skill and object control skill, develop independently, possibly influenced by unexplored variables. These findings contradict earlier results based on product-oriented measurements, which may include a physical capacity component. The outcomes further underscore the importance of monitoring weight status from early childhood, given its significant association with later-life weight conditions.

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Coordination Dynamics in Motor Learning: Acquisition and Adaptation in a Serial Stimulus Tracking Task

Matheus M. Pacheco, Natália F.A. Ambrósio, Fernando G. Santos, Go Tani, and Luciano Basso

The dynamics of mastering the degrees of freedom in motor learning are still far from being understood. The present work explored coordination dynamics in a redundant task, relating it to performance and adaptation in a serial stimulus tracking task. One hundred and sixty-three children (10–14 years of age) continuously responded to sequential stimuli (containing five stimuli) by pressing the respective sensors before the next stimulus presentation. Participants performed 120 trials with a fixed sequence (4–2–5–3–1) and a fixed interstimuli interval (800 ms) to learn the first pattern (practice phase). Then, a changed sequence (4–2–5–1–3) with a shorter interval (700 ms) was presented for 40 trials (adaptation phase). To measure coordination and its change, we calculated the correlation matrix of the stimulus–touch interval between the five sensors in blocks of 20 trials of the practice phase and classified individuals in terms of clusters. We found associations between coordination dynamics, performance curves, and adaptation in both coordination and performance. Furthermore, using network analyses, we found a tendency for all groups to increase the clustering coefficient. We discuss the possibility of this result representing a process of progressive segregation.

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In Situ Power–Cadence Relationship for 2-, 5-, and 20-Minute Duration: A Proof of Concept in Under-19 Cyclists

Yann Bertron, Maximilien Bowen, Pierre Samozino, Peter Leo, Alexandre Pacot, Jean-Baptiste Quiclet, Frédérique Hintzy, and Baptiste Morel

Background: The force–velocity relationship suggests that maximal power (P max) can only be produced in optimal torque (T opt) and cadence (C opt). However, the cadence at which mean maximal power (MMP) is produced has never been studied. This study aimed to determine the individual MMP–cadence relationship from in situ data. Method: We analyzed 1 year of data from 14 under-19 cyclists and calculated the MMP for each cadence between 50 and 120 rpm for 2-, 5-, and 20-minute durations. The MMP–cadence relationship was fit with a second-order polynomial function. The goodness of fit (r 2) and odd-day–even-day absolute and relative reliability were evaluated, respectively, for P max, T opt, and C opt. Results: The goodness of fit was very high for every duration studied. T opt and P max, but not C opt, were significantly higher for shorter durations. P max was significantly correlated only with T opt for the 3 durations (r 2 = .63, .71, and .64 for 2, 5, and 20 min, respectively). Discussion: Evaluation of the MMP–cadence relationship from in situ data is feasible and reliable for 2-, 5-, and 20-minute durations. This profiling approach would enable better detection of the strengths and weaknesses of cyclists and make it possible to design more effective training interventions. Practical Applications: The analysis makes it possible to identify the torque versus cadence component that individually limits power production. Knowing the C opt for a given duration of maximal effort could help athletes choose the right gear ratio and regulate cadence during a race in order to maximize performance.

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Marker-Based Versus IMU-Based Kinematics for Estimates of Lumbar Spine Loads Using a Full-Body Musculoskeletal Model

Maria Prado, Sakiko Oyama, and Hugo Giambini

Musculoskeletal modeling, typically implemented using marker-based systems in laboratory environments, is commonly used for noninvasive estimations of loads. Inertial measurement units (IMUs) have become an alternative for the evaluation of kinematics. However, estimates of spine joint contact forces using IMUs have yet to be thoroughly evaluated. Dynamics tasks and static postures from activities of daily living were captured on 11 healthy subjects using both systems simultaneously. Spine kinematics obtained from IMU- and marker-based systems and L4–L5 joint contact forces were compared. Lateral bending resulted in a weak agreement with significant differences between the 2 systems (P = .02, average root mean-squared error = 4.81), whereas flexion–extension and axial rotation exhibited the highest agreement with no significant differences (P < .05, average root mean-squared error = 5.51 and P < .31, average root mean-squared error = 5.08, respectively). All tasks showed excellent correlations (R 2 = .76–.99) in estimated loads between systems. Differences in predicted loads at the L4–L5 were only observed during flexion–extension (1041 N vs 947 N, P = .0004) and walking with weights (814 N vs 727 N, P = .004). Different joint reaction force outcomes were obtained in 2 of the 8 tasks between systems, suggesting that IMUs can be robust tools allowing for convenient and less expensive evaluations and for longitudinal assessments inside and outside the laboratory setting.

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NATA News & Notes

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A 20-Year Systematic Review of Before- and After-School Physical Activity Research (2000–2020)

Risto Marttinen, Alba Rodrigues, Oscar Nuñez-Enriquez, Erin Centeio, and Dominique Banville

Purpose: This systematic review aimed at identifying, categorizing, and analyzing peer-reviewed literature on organized before- and after-school (B&ASP) physical activity programs from 2000 to 2020. Methods: We analyzed 291 articles that fit the inclusion criteria from five databases. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses Guidelines were followed. Results: Research on B&ASPs has increased and been published in 157 journals across 26 countries. Most studies were quantitative. Most studies used a theoretical or conceptual framework and reported reliability, validity, and trustworthiness. Varied additional foci of impact were reported through different physical activities. However, physical activity was usually not measured. Interventions were 1–520 weeks long and conducted in different study contexts. Many studies targeted marginalized groups but did not utilize critical theory. Conclusion: Further studies should aim to better understand the nuances of B&ASPs, and critical theories could be useful. The lack of journals for B&ASP research limits scholars’ ability to move the field forward.

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Acute and Chronic Weight-Making Practice in Professional Mixed Martial Arts Athletes: An Analysis of 33 Athletes Across 80 Fights

Reid Reale, Junzhu Wang, Charles Hu Stull, Duncan French, Dean Amasinger, and Ran Wang

Mixed martial arts’ popularity has increased in recent years, alongside descriptive research and evidence-based performance recommendations. Guidelines for (both chronic and acute) weight making exist; however, how these translate in real-life scenarios and detailed investigations on practices in larger groups deserve attention. The present study examined the body mass (BM) and composition of 33 professional mixed martial arts athletes preparing for 80 fights. Athletes were supported by on-site dietitians, who encouraged evidence-based practices. Fasted BM was measured throughout the last ∼10 days before all bouts (acute weight management phase). A subset of athletes had body composition assessed before and after the chronic weight loss phase for 40 fights. Most athletes engaged in chronic BM loss, and all engaged in acute weight loss. Many lost fat-free mass (FFM) during the chronic phase, with rates of BM loss <0.5% best preserving FFM. Regardless of losses, the present athletes possessed greater FFM than other combat sport athletes and engaged in greater acute weight loss. Dehydration in the 24–48 hr before the weigh-in was not reflective of weight regain after the weigh-in, rather BM 7–10 days before the weigh-in was most reflective. These findings suggest that many mixed martial arts athletes could increase FFM at the time of competition by maintaining leaner physiques outside of competition and/or allowing increased time to reduce BM chronically. Acutely, athletes can utilize evidence-based protocols, eliminating carbohydrates, fiber, sodium, and finally fluid in a staged approach, before the weigh-in, reducing the amount of sweating required, thus theoretically better protecting health and preserving performance.

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Durability and Underlying Physiological Factors: How Do They Change Throughout a Cycling Season in Semiprofessional Cyclists?

Jens G. Voet, Robert P. Lamberts, Aitor Viribay, Jos J. de Koning, and Teun van Erp

Purpose: To investigate how cycling time-trial (TT) performance changes over a cycling season, both in a “fresh” state and in a “fatigued” state (durability). Additionally, the aim was to explore whether these changes are related to changes in underlying physiological factors such as gross efficiency, energy expenditure (EE), and substrate oxidation (fat oxidation [FatOx] and carbohydrate oxidation [CarbOx]). Methods: Sixteen male semiprofessional cyclists visited the laboratory on 3 occasions during a cycling season (PRE, START, and IN) and underwent a performance test in both fresh and fatigued states (after 38.1 [4.9] kJ/kg), containing a submaximal warm-up for the measurement of gross efficiency, EE, FatOx, and CarbOx and a maximal TT of 1 (TT1min) and 10 minutes (TT10min). Results were compared across states (fresh vs fatigued) and periods (PRE, START, and IN). Results: The average power output (PO) in TT1min decreased (P < .05) from fresh to fatigued state across all observed periods, whereas there was no change in the PO in TT10min. Over the course of the season, the PO in TT1min in the fatigued state improved more compared with the PO in TT1min in the fresh state. Furthermore, while EE did not significantly change, there was an increase in FatOx and a decrease in CarbOx toward the fatigued state. These changes diminished during the cycling season (IN), indicating a greater contribution of CarbOx in the fatigued state. Conclusions: TT1min performance is more sensitive to fatigue compared with TT10min. Also, during a cycling season, durability improves more when compared with fresh maximal POs, which is also observed in the changes in substrate oxidation.