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The Anabolic Response to Protein Ingestion During Recovery From Exercise Has No Upper Limit in Magnitude and Duration In Vivo in Humans: A Commentary

Oliver C. Witard and Samuel Mettler

A comprehensive recent study by Trommelen et al. demonstrated that muscle tissue exhibits a greater capacity to incorporate exogenous exogenous protein-derived amino acids into bound muscle protein than was previously appreciated, at least when measured in “anabolically sensitive,” recreationally active (but not resistance-trained), young men following resistance exercise. Moreover, this study demonstrated that the duration of the postprandial period is modulated by the dose of ingested protein contained within a meal, that is, the postexercise muscle protein synthesis response to protein ingestion was more prolonged in 100PRO than 25PRO. Both observations represent important scientific advances in the field of protein metabolism. However, we respectfully caution that the practical implications of these findings may have been misinterpreted, at least in terms of dismissing the concept of protein meal distribution as an important factor in optimizing muscle tissue anabolism and/or metabolic health. Moreover, based on emerging evidence, this idea that the anabolic response to protein ingestion has no upper limit does not appear to translate to resistance-trained young women.

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Physical Fitness as a Predictor of Disability Retirement: A 9-Year Register Linked Follow-Up Study

Markus Kuusela, Valtteri Pohjola, Katariina Sarttila, Matti Munukka, Riikka Holopainen, Mikko Laaksonen, Annamari Lundqvist, and Jouni Lahti

Background: To prospectively examine the association between physical fitness and risk of disability retirement in a large population-based cohort. Methods: This study utilized data from Health 2011 survey Physical Activity subsample (n = 4898), combined with information on disability retirement derived from 2 national registers. In total, 2455 individuals aged 18–74 years underwent the physical fitness test protocol concerning measures of cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle strength, and balance. The outcome variable was disability retirement, during the follow-up period of 9 years. After excluding those not at risk of disability retirement (ie, age ≥63 y) or who had already been granted disability pension, and those who had not completed the fitness protocol, the analytical sample included 1381 participants. Data were analyzed using Cox regression model with SPSS (version 29). Results: During the 9-year follow-up period, 61 individuals (4.4%) transitioned to a disability retirement. Cox regression analysis showed an association between the various physical fitness subdomains and the risk of disability retirement. In model 1, all fitness tests were associated with the risk of disability retirement, except the one-leg stand test with hazard ratios ranging from 1.69 (95% CI, 0.86–3.34) to 5.75 (95% CI, 1.84–17.90). Further adjustment for sociodemographic, health behavior, and health-related covariates attenuated the associations and statistical significance was lost, except for the vertical jump test (hazard ratio = 4.33; 95% CI, 1.32–14.10) and 6-minute walk test (hazard ratio = 3.81; 95% CI, 1.35–10.70). Conclusion: These findings highlight the importance of physical fitness for preventing work disability.

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Introducing IJSPP’s First Reviewer Incentive: A Submission-Fee Waiver

Dionne A. Noordhof and Øyvind Sandbakk

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Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: Essential Papers in Sports and Exercise Physiology

Jos J. de Koning and Carl Foster

Purpose: The purpose of this survey was to create a list of essential historical and contemporary readings for undergraduate and graduate students in the field of exercise physiology. Methods: Fifty-two exercise physiologists/sport scientists served as referees, and each nominated ∼25 papers for inclusion in the list. In total, 396 papers were nominated by the referees. This list was then sent back to the referees, with the instructions to nominate the “100 essential papers in sports and exercise physiology.” Results: The referees cast 4722 votes. The 100 papers with the highest number of votes received 51% (2406) of the total number of votes. A total of 37 papers in the list of “100 essential papers” were published >50 years ago, and 63 papers were published since 1973. Conclusions: This list of essential studies will provide a perspective on contemporary studies, the “giant’s shoulders” to enable young scholars to “see further” or to understand where they have “come from.” This compilation is also meant to impress on students that, given the (lack of) technology available in the past, some of the early science required enormous intuitive leaps on the part of historical scientists.

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What’s Your Poison? Is Sitting Always Health Hindering and Moving Always Health Promoting?

Leon Straker, Charlotte Lund Rasmussen, Nidhi Gupta, and Andreas Holtermann

The clear public messaging from international health authorities is that individuals should “sit less and move more.” While it is acknowledged that this guidance needs to be tailored to the age of people and also to their health, and abilities, the guidance is not tailored to their current level of physical behaviors. This opinion piece aims to highlight that although people with excessive sitting and insufficient moderate-to-vigorous physical activity should sit more and move less, for other people their health would be promoted by sitting more and moving less. Thus, physical behaviors are not always “poison” or “medicine,” but rather the health impact of changes in physical behaviors depends on people’s initial levels. Policy, research, and practice implications of this realization are presented. Only tailoring messaging to age and health status could be far from optimal for people with very different current levels of physical behaviors. Policy, research, and practice will be enhanced when the potential for physical behaviors to be either health hindering or health promoting is adequately considered.

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Community Group-Based Physical Activity Programs for Immigrant Older Adults: A Systematic Realist Review

Jordana Salma, Alesia Au, Sonam Ali, Stephanie Chamberlain, John C. Spence, Allyson Jones, Megan Kennedy, Hongmei Tong, Salima Meherali, Philile Mngomezulu, and Rachel Flynn

Physical activity program interventions often lack sensitivity to the needs of older immigrant adults. The objective of this systematic realist review is to explain how, why, for whom, and under which circumstances community group-based physical activity programs work for immigrant older adults. The initial program theory was developed using prior research, team expertise, social cognitive theory, and knowledge user consultations. The program theory was tested and refined via a systematic review of the literature. Database searches were conducted in MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, Scopus, Cochrane Library, Sports Medicine and Education Index, and SPORTDiscus. A total of 22 sources of evidence met inclusion criteria and included intervention studies, systematic reviews, and a discussion paper. Intervention studies were appraised using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool. The final program theory constituted eight context–mechanism–outcome configurations that highlight the importance of facilitator characteristics, access to safe spaces, group dynamics, and social support. A limitation was the small number and variable quality of included evidence. Physical activity programs that target immigrant older adults must strengthen physical and psychological safety and maximize opportunities for role modeling and socialization. This research was supported by the Alberta Health Services Seniors Health Strategic Clinical Network and is registered in PROSPERO (ID#258179).

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How Can We Equitably Scale-Up Physical Activity Interventions to Ensure Everyone Has Opportunities to Thrive?

Gabriella M. McLoughlin and Jo Salmon

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The Secret Sauce? Taking the Mystery Out of Scaling-Up School-Based Physical Activity Interventions

Heather A. McKay, Sarah G. Kennedy, Heather M. Macdonald, Patti-Jean Naylor, and David R. Lubans

Over the last 4 decades, physical activity researchers have invested heavily in determining “what works” to promote healthy behaviors in schools. Single and multicomponent school-based interventions that target physical education, active transportation, and/or classroom activity breaks effectively increased physical activity among children and youth. Yet, few of these interventions are ever scaled-up and implemented under real-world conditions and in diverse populations. To achieve population-level health benefits, there is a need to design school-based health-promoting interventions for scalability and to consider key aspects of the scale-up process. In this opinion piece, we aim to identify challenges and advance knowledge and action toward scaling-up school-based physical activity interventions. We highlight the key roles of planning for scale-up at the outset, scale-up pathways, trust among partners and program support, program adaptation, evaluation of scale-up, and barriers and facilitators to scaling-up. We draw upon our experience scaling-up effective school-based interventions and provide a solid foundation from which others can work toward bridging the implementation-to-scale-up gap.

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Editor’s Notes

Craig A. Williams

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Forearm Posture Affects the Corticospinal Excitability of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Hand Muscles in Dominant and Nondominant Sides

Marco Antonio Cavalcanti Garcia, Thiago Santos de Carvalho, Renan Hiroshi Matsuda, Oswaldo Baffa, Luis Aureliano Imbiriba, and Victor Hugo Souza

Different forearm postures can modulate corticospinal excitability. However, there is no consensus on whether handedness plays a role in such a mechanism. This study investigated the effects of 3 forearm postures (pronation, neutral, and supination) on the corticospinal excitability of muscles from the dominant and nondominant upper limbs. Surface electromyography was recorded from the abductor digiti minimi, flexor pollicis brevis, and flexor carpi radialis from both sides of 12 right-handed volunteers. Transcranial magnetic stimulation pulses were applied to each muscle’s hotspot in both cerebral hemispheres. Motor-evoked potential peak-to-peak amplitude and latency and resting motor threshold were measured. The data were evaluated by analysis of variance. The level of significance was set at 5%. The resting motor threshold was similar for the 3 muscles and both sides. Motor-evoked potential peak-to-peak amplitude from flexor pollicis brevis was lower during supination, and the dominant upper limb latency was longer. The flexor carpi radialis presented lower motor-evoked potential peak-to-peak amplitudes for neutral and shorter latencies during supination. Abductor digiti minimi seemed not to be affected by posture or side. Different muscles from dominant and nondominant sides may undergo corticospinal modulation, even distally localized from a particular joint and under rest.