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Larissa Di Bella, Kenji Doma, Wade Heath Sinclair, and Jonathan Douglas Connor

Purpose: This crossover trial compared the effects of varying feedback approaches on sprint performance, motivation, and affective mood states in female athletes. Methods: Eligibility criteria were being competitive female athletes, where participants completed sprint tests in 4 randomized feedback conditions on grass, including augmented feedback (sprint time; AUG-FB), technical feedback (cues; TECH-FB), a competition-driven drill (CDD) sprinting against an opponent, and a control condition (no feedback; CON). Participants completed a 20-m sprint (maximum sprint), 30-m curved agility sprint, and a repeated sprint ability test, with sprint times, motivation level, and mood states recorded. The participants were blinded from the number of trials during the repeated sprint ability test. Results: About 12 rugby league players completed all feedback conditions. The maximum sprint times were faster for AUG-FB (3.54 [0.16] s) and CDD (3.54 [0.16] s) compared with TECH-FB (3.64 [0.16] s), while there were no differences compared with CON (3.58 [0.17] s). The curved agility sprint times were faster for AUG-FB (5.42 [0.20] s) compared with TECH-FB (5.61 [0.21] s) and CON (5.57 [0.24] s), although CDD (5.38 [0.26] s) produced faster sprint times than TECH-FB. Effort and value were higher with AUG-FB (6.31 [0.68]; 6.53 [0.05]) compared with CON (5.99 [0.60]; 4.75 [2.07]), while CON exhibited lower enjoyment ratings (4.68 [0.95]) compared with other feedback conditions (AUG-FB: 5.54 [0.72]; CDD: 5.56 [0.67]; TECH-FB: 5.60 [0.56]). Conclusions: Providing AUG-FB prior to sprint tasks enhances more immediate performance outcomes than TECH-FB. AUG-FB also benefited athlete enjoyment, task effort, and coaching value. Female athletes should receive AUG-FB in testing and training environments, to improve immediate physical performance and motivation.

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Kelly P. Arbour-Nicitopoulos, Raktim Mitra, Ritu Sharma, and Sarah A. Moore

This study explored the association between socioecological factors and outdoor physical activity (PA) and play in children with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents (N = 133) completed a survey to report changes in their child’s outdoor PA and play during the pandemic (from prepandemic levels), and child, household, and neighborhood environment factors. Children with a PA-supporting parent and from multichild and White households had lower odds of reporting decreased outdoor PA. Children from multichild, higher income, married couple households and a PA-supporting parent had lower odds of decreased outdoor play. Living in neighborhoods with higher urbanization (i.e., high dwelling density, street intersections, and land-use mix) was associated with greater odds of decreased outdoor PA and play. Future research that uses larger and more representative samples of children with disabilities is needed to test for the multivariate effects of socioecological variables on outdoor PA and play.

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Henry J. Hopwood, Phillip M. Bellinger, Heidi R. Compton, Matthew N. Bourne, and Clare Minahan

Purpose: The aim of this systematic review was to (1) determine the muscle fiber-type composition (or muscle fiber typology [MFT]) of team-sport athletes and (2) examine associations between MFT and the physical characteristics and performance tasks in team-sport athletes. Methods: Searches were conducted across numerous databases—PubMed, SPORTDiscus, MEDLINE, and Google Scholar—using consistent search terms. Studies were included if they examined the MFT of team-sport athletes. Included studies underwent critical appraisal using the McMasters University critical appraisal tool for quantitative research. Results: A total of 10 studies were included in the present review, wherein the MFT of athletes was measured from 5 different team sports (soccer, rugby union, rugby league, handball, and volleyball). There was large variability in the MFT of team-sport athletes both within (up to 27.5%) and between sports (24.0% relative difference). Male football players with a higher proportion of type II fibers had faster 10- and 30-m sprint times, achieved a greater total distance sprinting (distance at >6.67 m·s−1), and a greater peak 1-minute sprint distance. Conclusions: MFT varies considerably between athletes both within and between different team sports. The results from some studies suggest that variation in MFT is associated with high-intensity running performance in a football match, as well as 10- and 30-m sprint times. Further experimental studies should focus on how determination of the MFT of team-sport athletes could be utilized to influence talent identification, team selection, and the individualization of training.

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Thomas Haugen, Espen Tønnessen, Silvana Bucher Sandbakk, and Øyvind Sandbakk

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Heidi Stanish, Samantha M. Ross, Byron Lai, Justin A. Haegele, Joonkoo Yun, and Sean Healy

The U.S. Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth has tracked 10 physical activity (PA) indicators common to the Active Healthy Kids Global Matrix since 2014. This article expands on the U.S. report cards by presenting PA indicator assessments among children and adolescents with disabilities. Grades for indicators were assigned based on a search of peer-reviewed articles presenting nationally representative data. The Global Matrix 3.0 benchmarks and grading framework guided the process. Grades for overall PA, sedentary behaviors, organized sports, and school were F, D+, D+, and D, respectively. Insufficient evidence existed to assign grades to the remaining six indicators. There is a need in the United States for targeted PA promotion strategies that are specific to children and adolescents with disabilities. Without a commitment to this effort across sectors and settings, the low grades identified in this para report card are expected to remain.

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Brantley K. Ballenger, Emma E. Schultz, Melody Dale, Bo Fernhall, Robert W. Motl, and Stamatis Agiovlasitis

This systematic review examined whether physical activity interventions improve health outcomes in adults with Down syndrome (DS). We searched PubMed, APA PsycInfo, SPORTDiscus, APA PsycARTICLES, and Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection using keywords related to DS and physical activity. We included 35 studies published in English since January 1, 1990. Modes of exercise training programs included aerobic exercise, strength training, combined aerobic and strength training, aquatic, sport and gaming, and aerobic and strength exercise interventions combined with health education. The evidence base indicates that aerobic and strength exercise training improve physical fitness variables including maximal oxygen uptake, maximal heart rate, upper and lower body strength, body weight, and body fat percentage. Sport and gaming interventions improve functional mobility, work task performance, and sport skill performance. We concluded that adults with DS can accrue health benefits from properly designed physical activity and exercise interventions.

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Brynn Adamson, Mina Woo, Toni Liechty, Chung-Yi Chiu, Nic Wyatt, Cailey Cranny, and Laura Rice

Lack of disability awareness of fitness professionals is a well-established barrier to exercise participation among people with disabilities that is likely related to the lack of disability awareness training for group fitness instructors. The purposes of this study were to develop, implement, and evaluate a disability awareness training for group fitness instructors. A 90-min video training and resource manual were developed. We recruited 10 group fitness instructors from one recreation center to participate. Participants completed baseline, posttraining, and 2-month follow-up testing on survey-based outcomes including disability attitudes, confidence in exercise adaptations, and training satisfaction. Participants’ confidence to adapt fitness classes was significantly improved; however, disability attitudes were high in the pretest and not significantly different posttraining. Semistructured interviews were conducted posttraining and revealed three themes: Formal disability training is needed, Managing inclusive class dynamics, and Training suggestions and satisfaction. This training demonstrated a feasible intervention for increasing disability awareness among community-based group fitness instructors.

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Stephen P. Fenemor, Matthew W. Driller, Nicholas D. Gill, Brad Anderson, Julia R. Casadio, Stacy T. Sims, and C. Martyn Beaven

Purpose: Although recommendations for effective heat acclimation (HA) strategies for many circumstances exist, best-practice HA protocols specific to elite female team-sport athletes are yet to be established. Therefore, the authors aimed to investigate the effectiveness and retention of a passive HA protocol integrated in a female Olympic rugby sevens team training program. Methods: Twelve elite female rugby sevens athletes undertook 10 days of passive HA across 2 training weeks. Tympanic temperature (T Tymp), sweat loss, heart rate, and repeated 6-second cycling sprint performance were assessed using a sport-specific heat stress test Pre-HA, after 3 days (Mid-HA), after 10 days (Post-HA), and 15 days post-HA (Decay). Results: Compared with Pre-HA, submaximal T Tymp was lower Mid-HA and Post-HA (both by −0.2 [0.7] °C; d ≥ 0.71), while resting T Tymp was lower Post-HA (by −0.3 [0.2] °C; d = 0.81). There were no differences in T Tymp at Decay compared with Pre-HA, nor were there any differences in heart rate or sweat loss at any time points. Mean peak 6-second power output improved Mid-HA and Post-HA (76 [36] W; 75 [34] W, respectively; d ≥ 0.45) compared with Pre-HA. The observed performance improvement persisted at Decay by 65 (45) W (d = 0.41). Conclusions: Ten days of passive HA can elicit some thermoregulatory and performance benefits when integrated into a training program in elite female team-sport athletes. However, such a protocol does not provide a sufficient thermal impulse for thermoregulatory adaptations to be retained after 15 days with no further heat stimulus.