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Harry E. Routledge, Stuart Graham, Rocco Di Michele, Darren Burgess, Robert M. Erskine, Graeme L. Close and James P. Morton

The authors aimed to quantify (a) the periodization of physical loading and daily carbohydrate (CHO) intake across an in-season weekly microcycle of Australian Football and (b) the quantity and source of CHO consumed during game play and training. Physical loading (via global positioning system technology) and daily CHO intake (via a combination of 24-hr recall, food diaries, and remote food photographic method) were assessed in 42 professional male players during two weekly microcycles comprising a home and away fixture. The players also reported the source and quantity of CHO consumed during all games (n = 22 games) and on the training session completed 4 days before each game (n = 22 sessions). The total distance was greater (p < .05) on game day (GD; 13 km) versus all training days. The total distance differed between training days, where GD-2 (8 km) was higher than GD-1, GD-3, and GD-4 (3.5, 0, and 7 km, respectively). The daily CHO intake was also different between training days, with reported intakes of 1.8, 1.4, 2.5, and 4.5 g/kg body mass on GD-4, GD-3, GD-2, and GD-1, respectively. The CHO intake was greater (p < .05) during games (59 ± 19 g) compared with training (1 ± 1 g), where in the former, 75% of the CHO consumed was from fluids as opposed to gels. Although the data suggest that Australian Football players practice elements of CHO periodization, the low absolute CHO intakes likely represent considerable underreporting in this population. Even when accounting for potential underreporting, the data also suggest Australian Football players underconsume CHO in relation to the physical demands of training and competition.

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Ricardo J.S. Costa, Vera Camões-Costa, Rhiannon M.J. Snipe, David Dixon, Isabella Russo and Zoya Huschtscha

The study aimed to determine the impact of a dairy milk recovery beverage immediately after endurance exercise on leukocyte trafficking, neutrophil function, and gastrointestinal tolerance markers during recovery. Male runners (N = 11) completed two feeding trials in randomized order, after 2 hr of running at 70% V˙O2max, fluid restricted, in temperate conditions (25 °C, 43% relative humidity). Immediately postexercise, the participants received a chocolate-flavored dairy milk beverage equating to 1.2 g/kg body mass carbohydrate and 0.4 g/kg body mass protein in one trial, and water volume equivalent in another trial. Venous blood and breath samples were collected preexercise, postexercise, and during recovery to determine the leukocyte counts, plasma intestinal fatty acid binding protein, and cortisol concentrations, as well as breath H2. In addition, 1,000 µl of whole blood was incubated with 1 μg/ml Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide for 1 hr at 37 °C to determine the stimulated plasma elastase concentration. Gastrointestinal symptoms and feeding tolerance markers were measured preexercise, every 15 min during exercise, and hourly postexercise for 3 hr. The postexercise leukocyte (mean [95% confidence interval]: 12.7 [11.6, 14.0] × 109/L [main effect of time, MEOT]; p < .001) and neutrophil (10.2 [9.1, 11.5] × 109/L; p < .001) counts, as well as the plasma intestinal fatty acid binding protein (470 pg/ml; +120%; p = .012) and cortisol (236 nMol/L; +71%; p = .006) concentrations, were similar throughout recovery for both trials. No significant difference in breath H2 and gastrointestinal symptoms was observed between trials. The total (Trial × Time, p = .025) and per cell (Trial × Time, p = .001) bacterially stimulated neutrophil elastase release was greater for the chocolate-flavored dairy milk recovery beverage (+360% and +28%, respectively) in recovery, compared with the water trial (+85% and −38%, respectively). Chocolate-flavored dairy milk recovery beverage consumption immediately after exercise prevents the decrease in neutrophil function during the recovery period, and it does not account for substantial malabsorption or gastrointestinal symptoms over a water volume equivalent.

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Nicholas Stanger and Susan H. Backhouse

Moral identity and moral disengagement have been linked with doping likelihood. However, experiments testing the temporal direction of these relationships are absent. The authors conducted one cross-sectional and two experimental studies investigating the conjunctive effects of moral identity and moral disengagement on doping likelihood (or intention). Dispositional moral identity was inversely (marginally), and doping moral disengagement, positively, associated with doping intention (Study 1). Manipulating situations to amplify opportunities for moral disengagement increased doping likelihood via anticipated guilt (Study 2). Moreover, dispositional moral identity (Study 2) and inducing moral identity (Study 3) were linked with lower doping likelihood and attenuated the relationship between doping moral disengagement and doping likelihood. However, the suppressing effect of moral identity on doping likelihood was overridden when opportunities for moral disengagement were amplified. These findings support multifaceted antidoping efforts, which include simultaneously enhancing athlete moral identity and personal responsibility alongside reducing social opportunities for moral disengagement.

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Elena López-Cañada, José Devís-Devís, Alexandra Valencia-Peris, Sofía Pereira-García, Jorge Fuentes-Miguel and Víctor Pérez-Samaniego

Background: This study describes the prevalence, frequency, and type of physical activity and sport (PAS) practiced by trans persons before and after their gender disclosure (GD). Methods: A face-to-face survey was administered to 212 Spanish trans persons, aged from 10 to 62 years old. McNemar and chi-square tests were used to determine significant differences. Results: About 75.5% of the trans persons in this study engaged in PAS and more than 50% did so ≥3 times/week, which is similar as in the general Spanish population. Participation was higher in trans men (78.7%) than trans women (72%). However, GD emerges as a key issue in characterizing trans persons’ PAS participation. A group of 14.5% of them stopped activity after GD. Participation in nonorganized PAS was higher than in organized PAS, and this difference is greater after GD because most participants gave up organized PAS in favor of nonorganized PAS. Trans persons preferred individual sports and activities than team sports before and after GD, and the top 3 activities were jogging, walking, and bodybuilding. Trans men participation was higher than trans women in team PAS, whereas individual PAS were equally practiced before and after GD. Participation in football, swimming, basketball, dancing, and volleyball declined after GD, whereas bodybuilding increased in trans men. Conclusions: The results show that the high involvement of trans persons coincides with strategies used to hide or conceal their gender identities when participating in PAS. A decrease in PAS participation is observed after GD probably because it is an acute potential period of anxiety, discrimination, and victimization caused by trans persons’ body exposure.

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Nikita Rowley, James Steele, Matthew Wade, Robert James Copeland, Steve Mann, Gary Liguori, Elizabeth Horton and Alfonso Jimenez

Objectives: To examine if exercise referral schemes (ERSs) are associated with meaningful changes in physical activity in a large cohort of individuals throughout England, Scotland, and Wales from The National Referral Database. Methods: Data were obtained from 5246 participants from 12 different ERSs, lasting 6–12 weeks. The preexercise referral scheme and changes from the preexercise to the postexercise referral scheme in self-reported International Physical Activity Questionnaire scores were examined. A 2-stage individual patient data meta-analysis was used to generate the effect estimates. Results: For the pre-ERS metabolic equivalent (MET) minutes per week, the estimate (95% confidence interval [CI]) was 676 MET minutes per week (539 to 812). For the change in MET minutes per week, the estimate (95% CI) was an increase of 540 MET minutes per week (396 to 684). Changes in the total PA levels occurred as a result of increases in vigorous activity of 17 minutes (95% CI, 9 to 24), increases in moderate activity of 29 minutes (95% CI, 22 to 36), and reductions in sitting of −61 minutes (95% CI, −78 to −43), though little change in walking (−5 min; 95% CI, −14 to 5) was found. Conclusions: Most participants undergoing ERSs are already “moderately active.” Changes in PA behavior associated with participation are through increased moderate to vigorous PA and reduced sitting. However, this was insufficient to change the International Physical Activity Questionnaire category, and the participants were still “moderately active.”

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Emmanuel Gomes Ciolac, José Messias Rodrigues da Silva and Rodolfo Paula Vieira

Background: The progressive dysfunction of the immune system during aging appears to be involved in the pathogenesis of several age-related disorders. However, regular physical exercise can present “antiaging” effects on several physiological systems. Methods: A narrative review of studies investigating the chronic effects of exercise and physical activity on the immune system and its association with age-related chronic diseases was carried out according to the guidelines for writing a narrative review. Results: There is compelling evidence suggesting that age-related immune system alterations play a key role on the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis, hypertension, chronic heart failure, type 2 diabetes, obesity, arthritis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. On the other hand, the regular practice of physical activity appears to improve most of the inflammatory/immunological processes involved in these diseases. Conclusion: Epidemiological, experimental, and clinical studies permit us to affirm that regular physical activity improves immunomodulation and may play a key role in the prevention and treatment of several age-related chronic diseases. However, further studies are needed to better describe the prophylactic and therapeutic effects of physical exercise in specific organs of older individuals, as well as the mechanisms involved in such response.

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Alison Griffin, Tim Roselli and Susan L. Clemens

Background: Health benefits of physical activity (PA) accrue with small increases in PA, with the greatest benefits for those transitioning from inactivity to any level of PA. This study examined whether self-reported PA time in Queensland adults changed between 2004 and 2018. Methods: The Queensland government conducts regular cross-sectional telephone surveys. Between 2004 and 2018, adults aged 18–75 years answered identical questions about their weekly minutes of walking, moderate PA, and vigorous PA. Hurdle regression estimated the average annual change in weekly minutes of PA overall and by activity type, focusing on sociodemographic differences in trends. Results: The sample size averaged 1764 (2004–2008) and 10,188 (2009–2018), totaling 107,171 participants aged 18–75 years. Unadjusted PA increased by 10 minutes per week per year (95% confidence interval [CI], 8.8–11.1) overall, with increases for most subgroups. Adjusted PA increased by 10.5 minutes per week per year (95% CI, 9.4–11.7). Trends differed by employment—employed adults and those not in the labor force increased by 14.3 (95% CI, 12.8–15.8) and 2.2 minutes per week per year (95% CI, 0.4–4.0), respectively, with no increase for unemployed adults. The increases were due to both an increased prevalence of doing any activity and an increased average duration among active adults. Conclusions: Since 2004, PA time has increased for Queensland adults, with substantial variability by employment status.

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Emily Budzynski-Seymour, Rebecca Conway, Matthew Wade, Alex Lucas, Michelle Jones, Steve Mann and James Steele

Background: Physical activity (PA) promotes health and well-being. For students, university represents a transitional period, including increased independence over lifestyle behaviors, in addition to new stressors and barriers to engaging in PA. It is, therefore, important to monitor PA trends in students to gain a greater understanding about the role it might play in physical and mental well-being, as well as other factors, such as attainment and employability. Methods: Cross-sectional surveys were conducted in 2016 in Scottish universities and colleges, and in 2017 in universities and colleges across the United Kingdom, and the data were pooled for the present study (N = 11,650). Cumulative ordinal logistic regression was used to model the association between PA levels and mental and personal well-being, social isolation, and perceptions of academic attainment and employability. Results: Only 51% of the respondents met the recommended levels of moderate to vigorous PA per week. There was a linear relationship between PA levels and all outcomes, with better scores in more active students. Conclusions: UK university students are insufficiently active compared with the general population of 16- to 24-year olds. Yet, students with higher PA report better outcomes for mental and personal well-being, social isolation, and perceptions of academic attainment and employability.

Open access

Jillian J. Haszard, Kim Meredith-Jones, Victoria Farmer, Sheila Williams, Barbara Galland and Rachael Taylor

Although 24-hour time-use data are increasingly being examined in relation to indices of health, consensus has yet to be reached about the best way to present estimates from compositional analyses. This analysis explored the impact of different presentations of results when assessing the relationship between 24-hour time-use and body mass index (BMI) z-score using compositional analysis of 5-day actigraphy data in 742 children. First it was found that reallocating non-wear time to day-time components only (sedentary behavior, light physical activity, and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity [MVPA]) before normalization to 24 hours provided stronger estimates with BMI z-score than simply removing non-wear time before normalization. Estimates for sleep time were substantially affected, where associations with BMI z-score nearly doubled (mean difference [95% CI] in BMI z-score for 10% longer sleep were −0.20 [−0.32, −0.08] compared to −0.11 [−0.23, 0.002]). Presenting estimates in terms of a greater number of minutes in a component, relative to all others, showed MVPA to be the strongest predictor of BMI z-score, while estimates in terms of the proportion of minutes showed sleep to be the strongest predictor. Both presentations have value. However, presentations in terms of one-to-one “substitutions” of time may need careful interpretation due to the uneven distribution of time in each component. In conclusion, when analyzing relationships between 24-hour time-use and health outcomes, non-wear time and presentation of estimates can impact final conclusions. As a result, the current understanding of the importance of sleep for child health may be underestimated.