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Katelyn M. Nelson, Elizabeth H.K. Daidone, Katherine M. Breedlove, Debbie A. Bradney and Thomas G. Bowman

The study objective was to determine the magnitude and frequency of head impacts in NCAA Division III soccer athletes based on player position and type of play (offense, defense, transition). Across player position, male and female soccer defenders sustained the most head impacts (males IR = 18.89, 95% CI = 16.89–20.89; females IR = 8.45, 95% CI = 7.25–9.64; IRR = 2.23, 95% CI = 1.87–2.67). The study revealed a nonstatistically significant interaction between sex, player position, and type of play for both linear (p = .42) and rotational accelerations (p = .16). Defenders sustained the majority of the head impacts in the study sample, suggesting preventative initiatives should be focused on back row players.

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Isao Saito, Koutatsu Maruyama, Tadahiro Kato, Yasunori Takata, Kiyohide Tomooka, Ryoichi Kawamura, Yuichi Uesugi, Yoshihiko Naito, Haruhiko Osawa and Takeshi Tanigawa

Background: Autonomic activity is possibly influenced by physical activity (PA). However, it remains unclear whether this association is modified by insulin resistance. Methods: This population-based study between 2009 and 2012 included 2016 men and women aged 30–79 years. The PA was assessed using a validated questionnaire based on sleep, occupation, transportation, household characteristics, and leisure-time PA. Heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) in the sitting position were determined from 5-minute recordings of pulse waves detected by a fingertip sensor. The HRV was calculated as frequency (standard deviation of normal-to-normal [NN] intervals [SDNN]), root mean square of successive differences (RMSSD), and percentage differences between normal NN intervals >50 milliseconds [pNN50]) and time domains. Insulin resistance was evaluated using the homeostasis model assessment index (HOMA-IR). Results: HR, RMSSD, and pNN50 were related to the total and moderate/vigorous PA tertiles in models that included HOMA-IR. The partial regression coefficient of total PA per 1-SD increase was .05 (P = .019) for log-transformed RMSSD and 1.86 (P = .001) for pNN50. No interactive associations were observed between PA and HOMA-IR. Conclusions: Low total PA was associated with increased HR and low levels of RMSSD and pNN50, reflecting parasympathetic modulation that was not modified by insulin resistance.

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Milos R. Petrovic, Amador García-Ramos, Danica N. Janicijevic, Alejandro Pérez-Castilla, Olivera M. Knezevic and Dragan M. Mirkov

Purpose: To test whether the force–velocity (F–V) relationship obtained during a specific single-stroke kayak test (SSKT) and during nonspecific traditional resistance-training exercises (bench press and prone bench pull) could discriminate between 200-m specialists and longer-distance (500- and 1000-m) specialists in canoe sprint. Methods: A total of 21 experienced male kayakers (seven 200-m specialists and 14 longer-distance specialists) participated in this study. After a familiarization session, kayakers came to the laboratory on 2 occasions separated by 48 to 96 hours. In a randomized order, kayakers performed the SSKT in one session and the bench press and bench pull tests in another session. Force and velocity outputs were recorded against 5 loads in each exercise to determine the F–V relationship and related parameters (maximum force, maximum velocity, F–V slope, and maximum power). Results: The individual F–V relationships were highly linear for the SSKT (r = .990 [.908, .998]), bench press (r = .993 [.974, .999]), and prone bench pull (r = .998 [.992, 1.000]). The F–V relationship parameters (maximum force, maximum velocity, and maximum power) were significantly higher for 200-m specialists compared with longer-distance specialists (all Ps ≤ .047) with large effect sizes (≥0.94) revealing important practical differences. However, no significant differences were observed between 200-m specialists and longer-distance specialists in the F–V slope (P ≥ .477). Conclusions: The F–V relationship assessed during both specific (SSKT) and nonspecific upper-body tasks (bench press and bench pull) may distinguish between kayakers specialized in different distances.

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Werner de Andrade Müller, Grégore Iven Mielke, Inácio Crochemore M. da Silva, Mariangela F. Silveira and Marlos Rodrigues Domingues

Background: Physical activity (PA) during pregnancy is associated with several benefits in maternal and child outcomes, and its relationship with preterm birth is still conflicting. This study aims to examine the associations between PA during pregnancy and occurrence of preterm birth. Methods: PA was assessed by questionnaire (for each trimester) and accelerometry (second trimester) in women enrolled in a birth cohort study that started during pregnancy and included births that occurred between January 1 and December 31, 2015. Gestational age was based on the last menstrual period and ultrasonography. All deliveries before 37 weeks of gestation were considered preterm births. A Poisson regression model was used to measure associations controlling for potential confounders. Results: PA information was available for 4163 women and 13.8% of births were preterm. A total of 15.8% of women were engaged in PA during pregnancy. Multivariate analysis showed that only PA performed in the third trimester of pregnancy (prevalence ratio = 0.58; 95% confidence interval, 0.36–0.96) was associated with the outcome. Conclusions: PA performed in the third trimester of pregnancy was associated with a protection to preterm birth. Pregnant women should be counseled to engage in PA to lower the risk of premature delivery.

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Rachel Allison

Although women athletes in professional sport are uniquely positioned to expose the limits of gender essentialist ideology and challenge its relationship with inequality, little empirical research has considered how professional women athletes understand and negotiate gender ideologies. Drawing on 19 in-depth interviews and one e-mail exchange with U.S. women’s professional soccer players, this article finds that sportswomen strategically endorse constructions of gender difference while simultaneously universalizing White, middle-class women’s experiences. “Privileging difference” is a narrative whereby players recognize belief in women’s physical inferiority to men and argue for women’s moral superiority to men as a source of value and reward for women’s sport. Sportswomen’s moral authority is defined from a position of racialized class privilege, as players construct an idealized woman player who sacrifices material reward for emotional satisfaction and who emphasizes future change over present conditions.

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James A. Betts

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Eishin Teraoka, Heidi Jancer Ferreira, David Kirk and Farid Bardid

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to carry out a systematic review of intervention programs that have addressed affective learning outcomes within physical education and to explore pedagogical practices in alignment with teaching, lesson content, and learning outcomes. Method: The literature search was conducted in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement. Included were 26 peer-reviewed pedagogical studies of physical education programs that addressed affective outcomes and reported fidelity of implementation. Results and Discussion: Affective outcomes were grouped into four themes: motivation, emotional responses, self-concept, and resilience. The findings showed that offering choice, encouraging peer feedback, asking deductive questions, focusing on personal improvement, and differentiating are effective teaching strategies that were widely used to support affective learning in children and adolescents. This review highlights the importance of fidelity of implementation to understand how intervention programs are delivered.

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Erin L. McCleave, Katie M. Slattery, Rob Duffield, Stephen Crowcroft, Chris R. Abbiss, Lee K. Wallace and Aaron J. Coutts

Purpose: To examine whether concurrent heat and intermittent hypoxic training can improve endurance performance and physiological responses relative to independent heat or temperate interval training. Methods: Well-trained male cyclists (N = 29) completed 3 weeks of moderate- to high-intensity interval training (4 × 60 min·wk−1) in 1 of 3 conditions: (1) heat (HOT: 32°C, 50% relative humidity, 20.8% fraction of inspired oxygen, (2) heat + hypoxia (H+H: 32°C, 50% relative humidity, 16.2% fraction of inspired oxygen), or (3) temperate environment (CONT: 22°C, 50% relative humidity, 20.8% fraction of inspired oxygen). Performance 20-km time trials (TTs) were conducted in both temperate (TTtemperate) and assigned condition (TTenvironment) before (base), immediately after (mid), and after a 3-week taper (end). Measures of hemoglobin mass, plasma volume, and blood volume were also assessed. Results: There was improved 20-km TT performance to a similar extent across all groups in both TTtemperate (mean ±90% confidence interval HOT, −2.8% ±1.8%; H+H, −2.0% ±1.5%; CONT, −2.0% ±1.8%) and TTenvironment (HOT, −3.3% ±1.7%; H+H, −3.1% ±1.6%; CONT, −3.2% ±1.1%). Plasma volume (HOT, 3.8% ±4.7%; H+H, 3.3% ±4.7%) and blood volume (HOT, 3.0% ±4.1%; H+H, 4.6% ±3.9%) were both increased at mid in HOT and H+H over CONT. Increased hemoglobin mass was observed in H+H only (3.0% ±1.8%). Conclusion: Three weeks of interval training in heat, concurrent heat and hypoxia, or temperate environments improve 20-km TT performance to the same extent. Despite indications of physiological adaptations, the addition of independent heat or concurrent heat and hypoxia provided no greater performance benefits in a temperate environment than temperate training alone.

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Janine V. Olthuis, Margo C. Watt, Christopher E. J. DeWolfe, Emma Connell, Emily N. Wright and Laura Sevigny

Women, relative to men, are at particularly high risk for anxiety and depression, perhaps in part due to their heightened levels of anxiety sensitivity (AS). Physical activity (PA) is an accessible mental health intervention that may be particularly beneficial for women. Using a within-subjects pre-post mixed methods design, this study tested the acceptability, appropriateness, feasibility, and evidence-base of a community-based PA intervention for AS among women at high risk for anxiety and depression. Participants were 45 women with high AS who completed an 8-week group PA intervention. Data were collected via self-report questionnaires, interviews, and recruitment, participation, and retention rates. Results suggest the intervention is acceptable, appropriate, and feasible. Interviews reveal high intervention satisfaction and perceived benefits beyond AS reduction. There was a relatively high attrition rate that suggests room for improvement. The intervention significantly reduced AS, as well as panic, social anxiety, generalized anxiety, and depression symptoms. In the context of the preliminary nature of this study, results suggest the use of community-delivered, group-based PA as a mental health intervention strategy for women is worth further exploration. There is potential for collaboration between the health system, PA delivery professionals, and community organizations to improve access to care.

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Lewis Keane, Emma Sherry, Nico Schulenkorf, Joel Negin, Ding Ding, Adrian Bauman, Edward Jegasothy and Justin Richards

Background: The purpose of this paper was to identify personal, social, and environmental mediators of recreational physical activity (PA) in a 6-month netball-based intervention for women and girls in Tonga. Methods: Tonga Netball’s “low-engagement village program” was implemented in 10 villages and aimed to increase the recreational PA levels in women and girls through a comprehensive, structured community-level netball program addressing key barriers to participation. In a mixed-methods approach, these mediating barriers were identified through qualitative interviews based on the socioecological model. Quantitative measures for mediators and recreational PA were then developed, and data from 301 women and girls were collected. Standard mediation analyses methods were then applied. Results: Program participation appeared to significantly increase PA levels. Statistically significant personal mediators were body issues, preferring competitions, and clothing. Social mediators were support from sports council, community leaders, friends, and church. Environmental mediators were travel time and access to balls, bibs, and umpires. Conclusion: A comprehensive community-level program addressing key participation barriers can increase recreational PA among women and girls in Tonga. Triangulating these results with mediation analyses of variables on the causal pathway can strengthen our understanding of causation and inform funding prioritization for critical program components in similar contexts.