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Mitchell J. Finlay, Craig A. Bridge, Matt Greig, and Richard M. Page

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess the efficacy of upper-body punch-specific isometric (ISO) and elastic resistance (ER) conditioning activities (CAs) on the punch force and neuromuscular performance of amateur boxers. Methods: Ten male senior elite amateur boxers (19.7 [1.2]| y; height 180.9 [7.0] cm; mass 78.7 [9.6] kg) visited the laboratory on 4 separate occasions. Initially, the participants performed baseline physical tests comprising bench-press 1-repetition maximum and countermovement jumps. On the other 3 occasions, the boxers performed maximal punches against a vertically mounted force plate and maximal countermovement jumps prior to and following an ISO or ER CA, as well as a control trial. Results: No interactions between CA × time were found in all performance variables. As observed by mean changes, effect sizes, and signal:noise ratio, both the ISO and ER, but not the control trial, consistently produced small to moderate, worthwhile increases in punch force and rate of force development, with the greatest increases in performance typically observed in the ISO trial. No meaningful improvements were observed in countermovement jump performance in all trials, indicative of a localized postactivation performance enhancement effect. Conclusion: In conclusion, the ISO and ER CAs may be implemented in an amateur boxers’ warm-up to acutely enhance punch-force variables, although the ISO punch appears to be the superior CA to improve punch-specific performance. The CAs used in the present study may also be relevant to other combat sports inclusive of a striking element.

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Emma Streatch, Natasha Bruno, and Amy E. Latimer-Cheung

Quality experiences in sport programming for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can promote physical and psychosocial benefits and long-term quality participation (QP). Unfortunately, children with ASD often experience sport participation barriers and, consequently, participate less in sport compared with children without disabilities. This study investigated QP priorities and strategies that could foster QP for children with ASD. Caregivers (n = 13), volunteers (n = 26), and staff (n = 14) involved in sport programming for children with ASD rated experiential elements of QP using the Measure of Experiential Aspects of Participation. In addition , a two-round Delphi survey with staff (Round 1: n = 11; Round 2: n = 13) generated 22 strategies for promoting QP—each rated highly with regard to importance (5.69–6.85 on a 7-point scale). Strategies were substantiated with published research evidence. Findings informed the development of a QP tool designed to help instructors implement identified strategies in hopes of improving sport experiences for children with ASD.

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Louis Moustakas and John Bales

Sport coaching policies in Europe lack a guiding framework, and there is limited knowledge about good practices within those policies. This lack of guidance stands in stark contrast to the growing role and importance, from both a practical and a policy perspective, that coaches play in Europe. It is against this background that the Policy, Evidence, and Knowledge in Coaching (PEAK) project was initiated to strengthen the policy foundations of sports coaching in Europe. To do so, the Policy, Evidence, and Knowledge in Coaching project aimed to develop coaching policy recommendations for national authorities and sport federations on the European continent. In the following, we present the main policy recommendations for national authorities as well as the extensive process that led to the formulation of those recommendations. Based on this work, nine recommendations featuring a total of 61 indicators were developed. Overall, we contend that the policy foundation for an effective coaching system includes clarity on who the policies are for, how the results of the policy will be measured, the education, regulation, and support of the workforce, and addressing the inclusion of underrepresented groups.

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Cindy H.P. Sit, Wendy Y.J. Huang, Stephen H.S. Wong, Martin C.S. Wong, Raymond K.W. Sum, and Venus M.H. Li

Background: Following the 2019 Hong Kong Para Report Card, the 2022 Hong Kong Para Report Card aimed to provide an updated and evidence-based assessment for nine indicators related to physical activity in children and adolescents with special educational needs and to assess the results using a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis. Methods: Using a systematic process, the best available data on nine indicators were searched from the past 10 years and were assessed by a research work group. Letter grades were assigned and considered by stakeholders and auditors. Results: Four indicators were assigned a letter grade (overall physical activity: F [mixed device-measured and self-reported data]; sedentary behaviors: D [device-measured data]; active transportation: D−; government strategies & investment: C+). SWOT analysis highlighted opportunities for facilitating children and adolescents with special educational needs to achieve health recommendations. Conclusion: There were deteriorating trends in physical activity and sedentary behaviors. Effective, multilevel, and cross-sector interventions are recommended to promote active behavior in children and adolescents with special educational needs.

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Gavin Thomas, Kathryn Devine, and Győző Molnár

Women continue to be underrepresented and underserved in the field of strength and conditioning (S&C), yet scholarly work examining the experiences and perceptions of women S&C coaches is limited. Thus, the purpose of this study was to conduct a scoping review of the existing literature on women S&C coaches to identify current trends as well as knowledge gaps. Four electronic databases (SPORTDiscus, PsycINFO, MEDLINE, and Academic Search Complete) were searched up to July 30, 2021. The initial search yielded 164 unique English-language papers, reviews, and book chapters. All in all, seven peer-reviewed articles were included, and data from these studies were charted. Each article offers insight into women’s experiences within the S&C industry, which are significantly different to their male counterparts. Based on our review of the findings, we recommend S&C coaches to participate in coach education programs and more women to be actively involved in the recruitment and hiring of S&C staff. While such findings are relevant, they have not fully explored the complexity of gender dynamics in S&C. Moreover, these recommendations will have limited long-term, sector-wide impact unless necessary policies are also implemented to help eradicate structure-level gender bias within the culture of S&C.

Open access

Susann Arnell, Kajsa Jerlinder, and Lars-Olov Lundqvist

Background: Participation in physical activity among adolescents with autism is often conditional. However, there is a lack of methods for identifying these specific conditions. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to develop and investigate the feasibility of a Q-sort tool to map individual-specific conditions for participation in physical activity among adolescents with autism and to identify different viewpoints regarding conditions for such participation. Method: An exploratory mixed-methods design was employed to investigate the feasibility of using Q methodology and the Q-sort procedure to identify what individual-specific conditions are important for participation in physical activity for adolescents with autism. Results: The adolescents ranked the statements with varying levels of ease. Two viewpoints were identified: Autonomous participation without surprises and Enjoyment of activity in a safe social context. Conclusion: Q-sort is a feasible method for mapping conditions for participation, which can guide the development of tailored physical activity interventions.

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Jose Mora-Gonzalez, Carmen Navarro-Mateos, and Isaac J. Pérez-López

Purpose: To examine the effects of a 14-week gamification-based physical education teaching program on fitness in college students. Method: A convenience sample of 112 college students (21.22 ± 2.55 years) was distributed among a gamification-based group or a control group (i.e., traditional teaching). College students from the gamification group used a game-based mobile app under the narrative of “STAR WARS™” with a countdown, so they had to gain lifetime. Cardiorespiratory fitness was assessed by the 20-m shuttle run test. Muscular fitness was measured by the handgrip strength and the standing broad jump tests. Results: Participants from the gamification program reported a significantly higher cardiorespiratory fitness and upper and lower body muscular fitness at postintervention, indicated by an effect size of 0.86 (p < .001), 0.18 (p = .018), and 0.52 (p < .001), respectively. Conclusion: Gamification can have an important implication on students’ motivation toward higher fitness.