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Takahiro Ogawa, Yuki Sueyoshi, Shintaro Taketomi, and Nobumasa Chijiiwa

Age-related sarcopenia and osteoporosis-related fractures are critical health issues. Therefore, this study aimed to assess skeletal muscle mass changes in older patients with vertebral compression fractures undergoing rehabilitation and to evaluate factors associated with muscle increases. This study included 179 patients aged ≥80 years in rehabilitation wards with vertebral compression fractures. Appendicular skeletal muscle index was significantly higher at discharge (5.22 ± 1.04 kg/m2, p < .001) than on admission (5.03 ± 1.00 kg/m2). Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that length of hospital stay was significantly associated with increased skeletal muscle index (odds ratios, 1.020; 95% confidence intervals [1.000, 1.032]), whereas age, sex, body mass index, functional independence measure, protein intake, and exercise therapy duration were not. Participants with vertebral compression fractures aged ≥80 years achieved significantly increased skeletal muscle mass in rehabilitation wards. In addition, length of hospital stay was the factor independently associated with increased skeletal muscle index.

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Lauren E. Schroeder, Rachel L. Tatarski, and Joshua T. Weinhandl

Decreased dorsiflexion range of motion (DROM) can be modified using static stretching and joint mobilizations and may attenuate known knee anterior cruciate ligament injury risk factors. It is not known how these interventions compare to each other and how they improve knee landing mechanics. This study’s purpose was to determine the immediate effects of static stretching and joint mobilization interventions on DROM measurement changes and right-leg drop jump knee landing mechanics. Eighteen females and 7 males, all recreationally active, completed 2 study sessions. Active and passive DROM, the weight-bearing lunge test, the anterior reach portion of the Star Excursion Balance Test, and a right-leg drop jump landing task were completed before and after the intervention. Change in DROM (ΔDROM) was calculated for DROM assessments between preintervention and postintervention. Pairwise dependent t tests determined no differences in ΔDROM between interventions, and statistical parametric mapping determined increased knee flexion (P = .004) and decreased anterior shear force (P = .015) during landing after both interventions. Increased DROM improves sagittal plane displacement and loading at the knee. Stretching may be a more feasible option in a healthy population for those wanting to maintain range of motion and decrease knee injury risk without physical therapist involvement.

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S. Sofie Lövdal, Ruud J.R. Den Hartigh, and George Azzopardi

Purpose: Staying injury free is a major factor for success in sports. Although injuries are difficult to forecast, novel technologies and data-science applications could provide important insights. Our purpose was to use machine learning for the prediction of injuries in runners, based on detailed training logs. Methods: Prediction of injuries was evaluated on a new data set of 74 high-level middle- and long-distance runners, over a period of 7 years. Two analytic approaches were applied. First, the training load from the previous 7 days was expressed as a time series, with each day’s training being described by 10 features. These features were a combination of objective data from a global positioning system watch (eg, duration, distance), together with subjective data about the exertion and success of the training. Second, a training week was summarized by 22 aggregate features, and a time window of 3 weeks before the injury was considered. Results: A predictive system based on bagged XGBoost machine-learning models resulted in receiver operating characteristic curves with average areas under the curves of 0.724 and 0.678 for the day and week approaches, respectively. The results of the day approach especially reflect a reasonably high probability that our system makes correct injury predictions. Conclusions: Our machine-learning-based approach predicts a sizable portion of the injuries, in particular when the model is based on training-load data in the days preceding an injury. Overall, these results demonstrate the possible merits of using machine learning to predict injuries and tailor training programs for athletes.

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Ahalee C. Farrow and Ty B. Palmer

This study aimed to examine the effects of age on hip flexion maximal and rapid strength and rectus femoris (RF) muscle size and composition in men. Fifteen young (25 [3] y) and 15 older (73 [4] y) men performed isometric hip flexion contractions to examine peak torque and absolute and normalized rate of torque development (RTD) at time intervals of 0 to 100 and 100 to 200 milliseconds. Ultrasonography was used to examine RF muscle cross-sectional area and echo intensity. Peak torque, absolute RTD at 0 to 100 milliseconds, and absolute and normalized RTD at 100 to 200 milliseconds were significantly lower (P = .004–.045) in the old compared with the young men. The older men exhibited lower cross-sectional area (P = .015) and higher echo intensity (P = .007) than the young men. Moreover, there were positive relationships between cross-sectional area and absolute RTD at 0 to 100 milliseconds (r = .400) and absolute RTD at 100 to 200 milliseconds (r = .450) and negative relationships between echo intensity and absolute RTD at 100 to 200 milliseconds (r = −.457) and normalized RTD at 100 to 200 milliseconds (r = −.373). These findings indicate that hip flexion maximal and rapid strength and RF muscle size and composition decrease in old age. The relationships observed between ultrasound-derived RF parameters and measurements of RTD suggest that these age-related declines in muscle size and composition may be relevant to hip flexion rapid torque production.

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Tetsuo Fukunaga

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Georde Vuillermin, Kelly-Ann Bowles, Ross Iles, and Cylie Williams

Health professionals responsible for return to work plans have little data about allied health movement to guide recommendations following lower back injury. This study aimed to quantify the lumbar movement patterns of allied health professionals within a health care facility throughout a normal workday. An observational case study was undertaken at a public health care facility with 122 allied health professionals. The lumbar movements were recorded with the ViMove together with pain scale measurement. The mean (SD) recording time for allied health was 7.7 (0.7) hours. A mean (SD) 3 (1.4) hours total were spent in standing, 3.8 (1.7) hours in sitting, and 0.8 (0.4) hours in locomotion. Forty-nine flexions were recorded on average per session, most identified as short term (<30 s) within low range (0°–20°). Lumbar movement patterns differed among professions. Thirty-seven (31%) participants reported a history of lower back injury, and 57 (47%) reported low back pain at the end of their workday. This study provides an insight into allied health professionals’ back movement in a hospital or community-based health care setting. These data may inform those who make return to work recommendations or provide rehabilitation services for allied health professionals working with a lower back injury.

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Wen-Yen Tseng, Ghazi Rekik, Chia-Hui Chen, Filipe M. Clemente, Pedro Bezerra, Zachary J. Crowley-McHattan, and Yung-Sheng Chen

Background: The psychological and physiological adaptations in response to the FIFA 11+ for kids (FIFA11+kid) program has not been examined in school children. This study aimed to investigate the effects of 8-week FIFA11+kid intervention on physical fitness and attentional capacity in elementary school children. Methods: A total of 55 elementary school students voluntarily participated in the study. Participants were assigned to either the FIFA11+kid (n = 28, 5 times per week) or the control (n = 27) group. At baseline and after 8 weeks, all participants were asked to perform a battery of physical fitness tests (sit-and-reach, broad jump, sit-up test, and 800-m run) and the Attention Scale for Elementary School Children, including 5 subscales: focused, sustained, selective, alternating, and divided attentions. Results: The FIFA11+kid group demonstrated larger pre–post change in sit-and-reach (P < .001) and sit-up test (P < .001) than that of control group. Moreover, the FIFA11+kid group demonstrated large improvements pre–post change in Attention Scale for Elementary School Children scores of total score (P < .001), focused (P < .001), sustained (P < .001), and selective attentions (P < .001) compared with the control group. Conclusion: A total of 8 weeks of FIFA11+kid exercise intervention can improve general physical fitness and attentional capacities in elementary school children.

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Margo E.K. Adam, Abimbola O. Eke, and Leah J. Ferguson

Self-compassion, an adaptive self-attitude, is a resource that women athletes use during emotionally difficult times and as a way to reach their potential. The relationship between self-compassion and sport performance, however, is complex. The role and experience of self-compassion within perceived important competitive events are important to explore, as athletes face unique pressures and stressors in these meaningful sport experiences. This collective case study describes women athletes’ self-compassion, sport performance perceptions, and well-being around a self-identified important competitive event. Competitive women athletes (N = 9) participated in two one-on-one interviews, before and after their important competitive event. Results from the holistic, functional, and thematic analyses are represented by holistic case descriptions and an overarching theme, Continuing to Excel in Sport, and subthemes, Reframing Criticism and A Determined Approach. In important competitive events, women athletes utilize self-compassion to promote performance perceptions and well-being when preparing, competing, and reflecting to excel in sport.