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Remote Determination of Critical Speed and Critical Power in Recreational Runners

Ben Hunter, Adam Ledger, and Daniel Muniz-Pumares

Purpose: This study aimed to compare estimations of critical speed (CS) and work completed above CS (D′), and their analogies for running power (critical power [CP] and W′), derived from raw data obtained from habitual training (HAB) and intentional maximal efforts in the form of time trials (TTs) and 3-minute all-out tests (3MTs) in recreational runners. The test–retest reliability of the 3MT was further analyzed. Methods: Twenty-three recreational runners (4 female) used a foot pod to record speed, altitude, and power output for 8 consecutive weeks. CS and D′, and CP and W′, were calculated from the best 3-, 7-, and 12-minute segments recorded in the first 6 weeks of their HAB and in random order in weeks 7 and 8 from 3 TTs (3, 7, and 12 min) and three 3MTs (to assess test–retest reliability). Results: There was no difference between estimations of CS or CP derived from HAB, TT, and 3MT (3.44 [0.63], 3.42 [0.53], and 3.76 [0.57] m · s−1 and 281 [41], 290 [45], and 305 [54] W, respectively), and strong agreement between HAB and TT for CS (r = .669) and CP (r = .916). Limited agreement existed between estimates of D′/W′. Moderate reliability of D′/W′ was demonstrated between the first and second 3MTs, whereas excellent reliability was demonstrated for CS/CP. Conclusion: These data suggest that estimations of CS/CP can be derived remotely, from either HAB, TT, or 3MT, although the lower agreement between D′/W′ warrants caution when using these measures interchangeably.

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Morality- and Norm-Based Subgroups of Disability-Sport Athletes Differ on Their Anticipated Guilt and Intentions Toward Doping

Tyler S. Harris, Alan L. Smith, and Ian Boardley

The purpose of this study was to examine whether subgroups of disability-sport athletes exist on morality- and norm-based doping cognitions and whether these groups differ in anticipated guilt or doping intentions. A survey was completed by 186 athletes (M age = 37.5 years, 78.0% male, 45.1% wheelchair basketball) assessing norms, doping moral disengagement, anticipated guilt, and intentions to dope. Cluster analysis revealed four distinct subgroups of athletes, including one potentially high-risk subgroup characterized by relatively high scores on doping moral disengagement, subjective norms, and descriptive norms. One-way analysis of variance revealed significantly lower anticipated guilt in two athlete subgroups characterized by relatively higher doping moral disengagement than the other two subgroups. Moreover, the potentially high-risk group had a greater proportion of athletes showing some presence of intention to dope. This study suggests there is a small subgroup of disability-sport athletes at elevated risk of doping who might benefit from targeted antidoping interventions.

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Rethinking Sport Science to Improve Coach–Researcher Interactions

Irineu Loturco

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A Systematic Review of Digital Interventions to Promote Physical Activity in People With Intellectual Disabilities and/or Autism

Debbie Van Biesen, Tine Van Damme, Natalia Morgulec-Adamowicz, Aleksandra Buchholz, Momna Anjum, and Séan Healy

This systematic review synthesized the literature on digital health interventions for the promotion of physical activity (PA) among people with intellectual disabilities and/or autism. From an initial screening of 553 records, 10 studies underwent full-text review. Data were extracted relating to study, intervention, and sample characteristics and PA-related findings. Methodological quality was evaluated using the Crowe Critical Appraisal Tool. There were mixed findings pertaining to the effectiveness of digital health interventions for promoting PA among these populations. Positive results were reported for three of five active-video-game interventions, two of three social-media-based interventions, and one of two e-learning/multicomponent interventions. Digital health interventions can potentially be effective for promoting PA among people with intellectual disabilities and/or autism. However, the large variation in the samples and intervention types and a reliance on pre- and quasi-experimental research designs suggest that inferences should be made with caution and additional research is needed.

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Volume 40 (2023): Issue 4 (Oct 2023)

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Volume 18 (2023): Issue 10 (Oct 2023)

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An Updated Panorama of Blood-Flow-Restriction Methods

Brendan R. Scott, Olivier Girard, Nicholas Rolnick, James R. McKee, and Paul S.R. Goods

Background: Exercise with blood-flow restriction (BFR) is being increasingly used by practitioners working with athletic and clinical populations alike. Most early research combined BFR with low-load resistance training and consistently reported increased muscle size and strength without requiring the heavier loads that are traditionally used for unrestricted resistance training. However, this field has evolved with several different active and passive BFR methods emerging in recent research. Purpose: This commentary aims to synthesize the evolving BFR methods for cohorts ranging from healthy athletes to clinical or load-compromised populations. In addition, real-world considerations for practitioners are highlighted, along with areas requiring further research. Conclusions: The BFR literature now incorporates several active and passive methods, reflecting a growing implementation of BFR in sport and allied health fields. In addition to low-load resistance training, BFR is being combined with high-load resistance exercise, aerobic and anaerobic energy systems training of varying intensities, and sport-specific activities. BFR is also being applied passively in the absence of physical activity during periods of muscle disuse or rehabilitation or prior to exercise as a preconditioning or performance-enhancement technique. These various methods have been reported to improve muscular development; cardiorespiratory fitness; functional capacities; tendon, bone, and vascular adaptations; and physical and sport-specific performance and to reduce pain sensations. However, in emerging BFR fields, many unanswered questions remain to refine best practice.

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The V ˙ O 2 max Legacy of Hill and Lupton (1923)—100 Years On

Grégoire P. Millet, Johannes Burtscher, Nicolas Bourdillon, Giorgio Manferdelli, Martin Burtscher, and Øyvind Sandbakk

Purpose: One hundred years ago, Hill and Lupton introduced the concept of maximal oxygen uptake ( V ˙ O 2 max ), which is regarded as “the principal progenitor of sports physiology.” We provide a succinct overview of the evolvement of research on V ˙ O 2 max , from Hill and Lupton‘s initial findings to current debates on limiting factors for V ˙ O 2 max and the associated role of convective and diffusive components. Furthermore, we update the current use of V ˙ O 2 max in elite endurance sport and clinical settings. Practical Applications and Conclusions: V ˙ O 2 max is a healthy and active centenarian that remains a very important measure in elite endurance sports and additionally contributes as an important vital sign of cardiovascular function and fitness in clinical settings. Over the past 100 years, guidelines for the test protocols and exhaustion criteria, as well as the understanding of limiting factors for V ˙ O 2 max , have improved dramatically. Presently, possibilities of accurate and noninvasive determination of the convective versus diffusive components of V ˙ O 2 max by wearable sensors represent an important future application. V ˙ O 2 max is not only an indicator of cardiorespiratory function, fitness, and endurance performance but also represents an important biomarker of cardiovascular function and health to be included in routine assessment in clinical practice.

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Highly Trained Biathletes With a Fast-Start Pacing Pattern Improve Time-Trial Skiing Performance by Pacing More Evenly

Thomas Losnegard, Magne Lund-Hansen, Erland Vedeler Stubbe, Even Dahlen Granrud, Harri Luchsinger, Øyvind Sandbakk, and Jan Kocbach

Purpose: In sprint biathlon, a J-shaped pacing pattern is commonly used. We investigated whether biathletes with a fast-start pacing pattern increase time-trial skiing and shooting performance by pacing more evenly. Methods: Thirty-eight highly trained biathletes (∼21 y, 27 men) performed an individual 7.5 (3 × 2.5 km for women) or 10-km (3 × 3.3 km for men) time trial on roller skis with a self-selected pacing strategy (day 1). Prone (after lap 1) and standing shooting (after lap 2) stages were performed using paper targets. Based on their pacing strategy in the first time trial (ratio between the initial ∼800-m segment pace on lap 1 and average ∼800-m segment pace on laps 1–3), participants were divided into an intervention group with the fastest starting pace (INT, n = 20) or a control group with a more conservative starting pace (CON, n = 18). On day 2, INT was instructed to reduce their starting pace, while CON was instructed to maintain their day 1 strategy. Results: INT increased their overall time-trial performance more than CON from day 1 to day 2  (mean ± 95% CI; 1.5% ± 0.7% vs 0.0% ± 0.9%, P = .02). From day 1 to day 2, INT reduced their starting pace (5.0% ± 1.5%, P < .01), with reduced ratings of perceived exertion during lap 1 (P < .05). For CON, no change was found for starting pace (−0.8% ± 1.2%) or ratings of perceived exertion between days. No differences were found for shooting performance for either group. Conclusion: Highly trained biathletes with a pronounced fast-start pattern improve skiing performance without any change in shooting performance by pacing more evenly.

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Effects of Ketone Monoester and Bicarbonate Co-Ingestion on Cycling Performance in WorldTour Cyclists

Domingo Jesús Ramos-Campo, Francisco Javier López-Román, Silvia Pérez-Piñero, Raquel Ortolano, María Salud Abellán-Ruiz, Enrique Molina Pérez de los Cobos, Antonio Jesús Luque-Rubia, Dag Van Elslande, and Vicente Ávila-Gandía

The present randomized study investigated the effect of acute supplementation of 800 mg/kg of ketone monoester ingestion (KE) or placebo (PL) and 210 mg/kg of NaHCO3 co-ingestion on cycling performance of WorldTour cyclists during a road cycling stage simulation. Twenty-eight cyclists participated in the study (27.46 ± 4.32 years; 1.80 ± 0.06 m; 69.74 ± 6.36 kg). Performance, physiological, biochemical, and metabolism outcomes, gut discomfort, and effort perceived were assessed during a road cycling simulation composed of an 8-min time-trial (TT) performance + 30-s TT + 4.5 hr of outdoor cycling + a second 8-min TT + a second 30-s TT. Greater absolute and relative mean power during the first 8-min TT (F = 5.067, p = .033, η p 2 = .163 , F = 5.339, p = .029, η p 2 = .170 , respectively) was observed after KE than after PL (KE: 389 ± 34, PL: 378 ± 44 W, p = .002, d = 0.294 and KE: 5.60 ± 0.42, PL: 5.41 ± 0.44 W/kg, p = .001, d = 0.442). Additionally, greater concentration of β-hydroxybutyrate blood concentration (F = 42.195, p < .001, η p 2 = .619 ) was observed after KE than after PL during the first steps of the stage (e.g., after warm-up KE: 1.223 ± 0.642, PL: 0.044 ± 0.058 mM, p < .001, d = 2.589), although the concentrations returned to near baseline after 4.5 hr of outdoor cycling. Moreover, higher values of anion gap were observed (F = 2.333, p = .026, η p 2 = .080 ) after KE than after PL ingestion, after the warm-up and after the first 8-min and 30-s TT. Additionally, lower concentrations of HCO 3 were reported in the KE condition after warm-up and after the first 8-min and 30-s TT. During the initial phase of the stage simulation, acute supplementation with KE + NaHCO3 co-ingestion enhanced 8-min TT cycling performance (3.1%) in WorldTour cyclists with a concomitant hyperketonaemia.