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Michael W. Beets, Guy C. Le Masurier, Aaron Beighle, David A. Rowe, Charles F. Morgan, Jack Rutherford, Michael Wright, Paul Darst and Robert Pangrazi

Background:

The purpose of this study was to cross-validate international BMI-referenced steps/d cut points for US girls (12,000 steps/d) and boys (15,000 steps/d) 6 to 12 years of age.

Methods:

Secondary pedometer-determined physical activity data from US children (N = 1067; 633 girls and 434 boys, 6 to 12 years) were analyzed. Using international BMI classifications, cross-validation of the 12,000 and 15,000 steps/d cut points was examined by the classification precision, sensitivity, and specificity for each age–sex stratum.

Results:

For girls (boys) 6 to 12 years, the 12,000 (15,000) steps/d cut points correctly classified 42% to 60% (38% to 67%) as meeting (achieved steps/d cut point and healthy weight) and failing (did not achieve steps/d cut point and overweight). Sensitivity ranged from 55% to 85% (64% to 100%); specificity ranged from 23% to 62% (19% to 50%).

Conclusion:

The utility of pedometer steps/d cut points was minimal in this sample given their inability to differentiate among children who failed to achieve the recommended steps/d and exhibited an unhealthy weight. Caution, therefore, should be used in applying previous steps/d cut points to US children.

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David Kahan and Virginie Nicaise

Background:

Curriculum interventions aimed at increasing physical activity in schools may prove useful in contexts where changes in policy/environment are not feasible. Design/evaluation of interventions targeting minority groups is important in light of well-publicized health disparities. Religious minorities represent a special subset that may positively respond to interventions tailored to their unique beliefs, which to date have been relatively underreported.

Methods:

Muslim American youth (n = 45) attending a parochial middle school participated in a religiously- and culturally-tailored 8-wk, interdisciplinary pedometer intervention. School-time ambulatory activity was quantified using a delayed multiple-baseline across subjects ABA design. Visual analysis of graphic data as well as repeated-measures ANOVA and ANCOVA and post hoc contrasts were used to analyze step counts including the moderating effects of day type (PE, no-PE), gender, BMI classification, grade, and time.

Results:

The intervention elicited modest increases in males’ steps only with effect decay beginning midintervention. BMI classification and grade were not associated with changes in steps.

Conclusions:

Full curricular integration by affected classroom teachers, staff modeling of PA behavior, and alternative curriculum for girls’ PE classes may further potentiate the intervention.

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Ryan D. Burns, Timothy A. Brusseau and James C. Hannon

Background:

Optimal levels of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) have been shown to improve health and academic outcomes in youth. Limited research has examined MVPA trajectories throughout a daily middle school physical education (PE) curriculum. The purpose of this study was to examine MVPA trajectories over a daily PE curriculum and the modifying effects of sex, body composition, and cardiorespiratory endurance.

Methods:

One hundred 7th- and 8th-grade students participated in daily PE lessons. There were 66 lessons throughout the semester. MVPA was monitored during each lesson using NL-1000 piezoelectric pedometers. Students were classified into FITNESSGRAM Healthy Fitness Zones using estimated VO2 Max and Body Mass Index (BMI). A population averaged generalized estimating equation was employed to examine MVPA trajectories.

Results:

On average, students’ MVPA decreased over time (β = –0.35, P < .001). Poor student VO2max classification significantly modified the trajectories (β = –0.14, P < .001), however poor BMI classification did not have a modifying effect (β = 0.03, P = .158).

Conclusions:

MVPA decreased in daily PE over time and cardiorespiratory endurance significantly modified the trajectories. The results support that extra efforts have to be made by teachers and students to sustain MVPA behaviors over a semester.

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Travis T. Simpson, Susan L. Wiesner and Bradford C. Bennett

The current means of locating specific movements in film necessitate hours of viewing, making the task of conducting research into movement characteristics and patterns tedious and difficult. This is particularly problematic for the research and analysis of complex movement systems such as sports and dance. While some systems have been developed to manually annotate film, to date no automated way of identifying complex, full body movement exists. With pattern recognition technology and knowledge of joint locations, automatically describing filmed movement using computer software is possible. This study used various forms of lower body kinematic analysis to identify codified dance movements. We created an algorithm that compares an unknown move with a specified start and stop against known dance moves. Our recognition method consists of classification and template correlation using a database of model moves. This system was optimized to include nearly 90 dance and Tai Chi Chuan movements, producing accurate name identification in over 97% of trials. In addition, the program had the capability to provide a kinematic description of either matched or unmatched moves obtained from classification recognition

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Stephen J. Rossi, Thomas W. Buford, Douglas B. Smith, Robin Kennel, Erin E. Haff and G. Gregory Haff

Purpose:

The primary purpose of this study was to simultaneously analyze both ends of the barbell with 19 weightlifters (age 18.0 ± 3.2 years, body mass 84.0 ± 14.2 kg, height 167.3 ± 8.7 cm) participating in a weightlifting competition to determine whether there were asymmetries in barbell kinematics and kinetics between the right and left sides of the barbell. The second purpose was to compare barbell-trajectory classification of the snatch and clean lifts between the right and left sides of the barbell.

Methods:

Barbell kinematic and kinetic data were collected and analyzed with 2 VS-120 weightlifting-analysis systems (Lipman Electronic Engineering Ltd, Ramat Hahayal, Israel). Barbell trajectories (A, B, and C) for the right and left sides were analyzed for each lift.

Results:

No significant difference was found in trajectory classification between sides of the barbell for either lift. The frequencies analysis revealed that type C barbell trajectories were the most prevalent in each lift. When the right and left sides of the barbell were compared during the snatch and clean, no significant differences were determined for any kinematic or kinetic variables.

Conclusions:

The V-scope system appears to facilitate analysis of barbell kinematics, kinetics, and trajectories during weightlifting competition regardless of which side of the barbell is analyzed.

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Laura Spivey Kabiri, Katy Mitchell, Wayne Brewer and Alexis Ortiz

Almost 2 million American children are homeschooled but no information is currently available regarding motor skill proficiency within this population. The purpose of this research was to describe motor skill proficiency among homeschooled children and assess differences in homeschooled subgroups. This crosssectional study screened 73 homeschooled children aged 5–8 years for overall motor skill proficiency using the Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency, Second Edition, Short Form (BOT-2 SF). Independent t tests examined differences in motor skill proficiency within the homeschooled population. Mann-Whitney U tests examined differences in motor skill proficiency classification within significantly different subgroups. Homeschooled children demonstrated average motor proficiency. Significantly different motor proficiency was seen among homeschooled children participating in 3 or more hours of organized sports per week, t(71) = 2.805, p = .006, 95% CI = 1.77, 10.49, and whose primary caregiver was employed versus unemployed, t(71) = –3.875, p < .001, 95% CI = –13.29, –4.26. Mann-Whitney U tests revealed significantly different motor skill proficiency classification in these same subgroups. Overall, homeschooling showed no detrimental effect on motor skill proficiency. Participation in 3 or more hours of organized sports per week or having an unemployed primary caregiver may improve motor skill proficiency among this population.

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James J. McClain, Gregory J. Welk, Michelle Ihmels and Jodee Schaben

Background:

The PACER test is a valid and reliable assessment of aerobic capacity in children. However, many schools lack adequate space to administer the test. This study compared the utility of the standard 20m PACER test with an alternative 15m PACER protocol in 5th and 8th grade students.

Methods:

A total of 171 students completed both PACER protocols in a counterbalanced design. Agreement between the two protocols was assessed with correlations, repeated-measures ANOVA, and classification agreement into the FITNESSGRAM ® healthy fitness zones.

Results:

The difference in estimated VO2max between the two tests was slightly larger for boys (5th grade, 1.32 ml/kg/min; 8th grade, 1.72 ml/kg/min) than girls (5th grade, 0.14 ml/kg/min; 8th grade, 1.11 ml/kg/min), but these differences are probably not of practical significance. Classification agreement was 88% for boys and 91% for girls.

Conclusions:

Collectively, the results suggest that the 15m and 20m PACER provide similar information about aerobic fitness in youth. The 20m test is recommended when possible, but the 15m provides a useful alternative for schools with smaller gymnasiums.

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Floor Morriën, Matthew J. D. Taylor and Florentina J. Hettinga

Purpose:

To provide an overview of biomechanical studies in Paralympic research and their relevance for performance in Paralympic sports.

Methods:

The search terms paralympic biomechanics, paralympic sport performance, paralympic athlete performance, and paralympic athlete were entered into the electronic database PubMed.

Results:

Thirty-four studies were found. Biomechanical studies in Paralympics mainly contributed to performance enhancement by technical optimization (n = 32) and/or injury prevention (n = 6). In addition, biomechanics was found to be important in understanding activity limitation caused by various impairments, which is relevant for evidence-based classification in Paralympic sports (n = 6). Distinctions were made between biomechanical studies in sitting (41%), standing (38%), and swimming athletes (21%). In sitting athletes, mostly kinematics and kinetics in wheelchair propulsion were studied, mainly in athletes with spinal-cord injuries. In addition, kinetics and/or kinematics in wheelchair basketball, seated discus throwing, stationary shot-putting, hand-cycling, sit-skiing, and ice sledge hockey received attention. In standing sports, primarily kinematics of athletes with amputations performing jump sports and running and the optimization of prosthetic devices were investigated. No studies were reported on other standing sports. In swimming, mainly kick rate and resistance training were studied.

Conclusions:

Biomechanical research is important for performance by gaining insight into technical optimization, injury prevention, and evidence-based classification in Paralympic sports. In future studies it is advised to also include physiological and biomechanical measures, allowing the assessment of the capability of the human body, as well as the resulting movement.

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Kirk Wakefield

Passion drives sport consumption, but we lack valid relevant measures of passion. The results of two studies provide evidence of a reliable and valid multiple-item passion scale that may be used in the study of sports-related consumption behavior. In Study 1 a multi-item fan passion scale was compared with established social identification fan classification scales to provide evidence of discriminant and predictive validity. Because the passion scale outperformed other relevant fan classification measures, in Study 2 the fan passion scale was compared with current single-item measurement practices employed by National Football League and Major League Baseball teams, and some academics, to classify fans. Findings confirmed the veracity of the multi-item passion measure over categorical and interval fan avidity measures used by leagues and syndicated research providers. Taken together, the studies validate an accurate measure of fan passion that may be used to segment and predict fan behaviors, including consumption of traditional media (television, radio, news, and the team’s website) and consumption of the team’s official social media outlets.

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Trent A. Petrie, Christy Greenleaf, Jennifer E. Carter and Justine J. Reel

Few studies have been conducted examining male athletes and eating disorders, even though the sport environment may increase their risk. Thus, little information exists regarding the relationship of putative risk factors to eating disorders in this group. To address this issue, we examined the relationship of eating disorder classification to the risk factors of body image concerns (including drive for muscularity), negative affect, weight pressures, and disordered eating behaviors. Male college athletes (N= 199) from three different NCAA Division I universities participated. Only two athletes were classified with an eating disorder, though 33 (16.6%) and 164 (82.4%), respectively, were categorized as symptomatic and asymptomatic. Multivariate analyses revealed that eating disorder classification was unrelated to the majority of the risk factors, although the eating disorder group (i.e., clinical and symptomatic) did report greater fear of becoming fat, more weight pressures from TV and from magazines, and higher levels of stress than the asymptomatic athletes. In addition, the eating disorder group had higher scores on the Bulimia Test-Revised (Thelen, Mintz, & Vander Wal, 1996), which validated the Questionnaire for Eating Disorder Diagnosis (Mintz, O’Halloran, Mulholland, & Schneider, 1997) as a measure of eating disorders with male athletes. These findings suggest that variables that have been supported as risk factors among women in general, and female athletes in particular, may not apply as strongly, or at all, to male athletes.