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Emma K. Zadow, Cecilia M. Kitic, Sam S.X. Wu and James W. Fell

Purpose: To assess the reliability of power-output measurements of a Wahoo KICKR Power Trainer (KICKR) on 2 separate occasions separated by 14 mo of regular use (∼1 h/wk). Methods: Using the KICKR to set power outputs, powers of 100–600 W in increments of 50 W were assessed at cadences of 80, 90, and 100 rpm that were controlled and validated by a dynamic calibration rig. Results: A small ratio bias of 1.002 (95% limits of agreement [LoA] 0.992–1.011) was observed over 100–600 W at 80–100 rpm between trials 1 and 2. Similar ratio biases with acceptable limits of agreement were observed at 80 rpm (1.003 [95% LoA 0.987–1.018]), 90 rpm (1.000 [0.996–1.005]), and 100 rpm (1.002 [0.997–1.007]). The intraclass correlation coefficient with 95% confidence interval (CI) for mean power between trials was 1.00 (95% CI 1.00–1.00) with a typical error (TE) of 3.1 W and 1.6% observed between trials 1 and 2. Conclusion: When assessed at 2 separate time points 14 mo apart, the KICKR has acceptable reliability for combined power outputs of 100–600 W at 80–100 rpm, reporting overall small ratio biases with acceptable LoA and low TE. Coaches and sport scientists should feel confident in the power output measured by the KICKR over an extended period of time when performing laboratory training and performance assessments.

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Ned Brophy-Williams, Matthew W. Driller, Cecilia M. Kitic, James W. Fell and Shona L. Halson

Purpose:

To determine the effect of wearing compression socks between repeated running bouts on perceptual, physiological, and performance-based parameters.

Methods:

Twelve well-trained male runners (mean ± SD 5-km time 19:24 ± 1:19 [min:s]) recorded their perceptions of the efficacy of compression socks for recovery before completion of 2 experimental sessions. Each session consisted of two 5-km running time trials (TT1 and TT2) on a treadmill, with a 1-h recovery period between. In a randomized crossover design, 1 session required participants to wear compression socks during the recovery period, and no compression socks were worn between TTs in the other session (control).

Results:

Running performance between TT1 and TT2 for runners wearing compression socks was similar between TTs (mean Δ 5.3 ± 20.7 s, d = 0.07, P = .20), whereas for control runners, performance significantly decreased in the second TT (mean Δ 15.9 ± 13.3 s, d = 0.19, P < .01). When grouped by perception of efficacy for compression socks, participants with strong beliefs (n = 7) experienced improved subsequent running performance with compression socks (mean Δ –3.6 ± 19.2 s, d = 0.05, P = .32) compared with those with neutral or negative perceptions (n = 5; mean Δ 17.9 ± 17.0 s, d = 0.19, P = .04). Cross-sectional area of the calf and muscle soreness were significantly reduced during the recovery period with the use of compression socks (P < .01), whereas ratings of fatigue showed no difference between conditions.

Conclusions:

Wearing compression socks between repeated running bouts can aid recovery and subsequent performance. Furthermore, subsequent exercise performance may be even further enhanced when athletes believe in the efficacy of compression socks to assist in recovery between exercise bouts.

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Dana Lis, Kiran D.K. Ahuja, Trent Stellingwerff, Cecilia M. Kitic and James Fell

Athletes employ various dietary strategies in attempts to attenuate exercise-induced gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms to ensure optimal performance. This case-study outlines one of these GI-targeted approaches via the implementation of a short-term low FODMAP (Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols) diet, with the aim to attenuate persistent running specific GI symptoms in a recreationally competitive multisport athlete (male, 86 kg, 57.9 ml·kg·min-1 V02max, 10–15 hr/week training, with no diagnosed GI disorder). Using a single-blinded approach a habitual diet was compared with a 6-day low FODMAP intervention diet (81 ± 5g vs 7.2 ± 5.7g FODMAP s/day) for their effect on GI symptoms and perceptual wellbeing. Training was similar during the habitual and dietary intervention periods. Postexercise (During) GI symptom ratings were recorded immediately following training. Daily GI symptoms and the Daily Analysis of Life Demands for Athletes (DALDA) were recorded at the end of each day. Daily and During GI symptom scores (scale 0–9) ranged from 0–4 during the habitual dietary period while during the low FODMAP dietary period all scores were 0 (no symptoms at all). DALDA scores for worse than normal ranged from 3–10 vs 0–8 in the habitual and low FODMAP dietary periods, respectively, indicating improvement. This intervention was effective for this GI symptom prone athlete; however, randomized-controlled trials are required to assess the suitability of low FODMAP diets for reducing GI distress in other symptomatic athletes.

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Calvin P. Philp, Martin Buchheit, Cecilia M. Kitic, Christopher T. Minson and James W. Fell

Purpose:

To investigate whether a 5-d cycling training block in the heat (35°C) in Australian Rules footballers was superior to exercising at the same relative intensity in cool conditions (15°C) for improving intermittent-running performance in a cool environment (<18°C).

Methods:

Using a parallel-group design, 12 semiprofessional football players performed 5 d of cycling exercise (70% heart-rate reserve [HRR] for 45 min [5 × 50-min sessions in total]) in a hot (HEAT, 35°C ± 1°C, 56% ± 9% RH) or cool environment (COOL, 15°C ± 3°C, 81% ± 10% RH). A 30-15 Intermittent Fitness Test to assess intermittent running performance (VIFT) was conducted in a cool environment (17°C ± 2°C, 58 ± 5% RH) before and twice after (1 and 3 d) the intervention.

Results:

There was a likely small increase in VIFT in each group (HEAT, 0.5 ± 0.3 km/h, 1.5 ± 0.8 × smallest worthwhile change [SWC]; COOL, 0.4 ± 0.4 km/h, 1.6 ± 1.2 × SWC) 3 d postintervention, with no difference in change between the groups (0.5% ± 1.9%, 0.4 ± 1.4 × SWC). Cycle power output during the intervention was almost certainly lower in the HEAT group (HEAT 1.8 ± 0.2 W/kg vs COOL 2.5 ± 0.3 W/kg, –21.7 ± 3.2 × SWC, 100/0/0).

Conclusions:

When cardiovascularexercise intensity is matched (ie, 70% HRR) between environmental conditions, there is no additional performance benefit from short-duration moderate-intensity heat exposure (5 × 50 min) for semiprofessional footballers exercising in cool conditions. However, the similar positive adaptations may occur in HEAT with 30% lower mechanical load, which may be of interest for load management during intense training or rehabilitation phases.

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Emma K. Zadow, Cecilia M. Kitic, Sam S.X. Wu, Stuart T. Smith and James W. Fell

Purpose:

To assess the validity of power output settings of the Wahoo KICKR Power Trainer (KICKR) using a dynamic calibration rig (CALRIG) over a range of power outputs and cadences.

Methods:

Using the KICKR to set power outputs, powers of 100–999 W were assessed at cadences (controlled by the CALRIG) of 80, 90, 100, 110, and 120 rpm.

Results:

The KICKR displayed accurate measurements of power of 250–700 W at cadences of 80–120 rpm with a bias of –1.1% (95% limits of agreement [LoA] –3.6% to 1.4%). A larger mean bias in power was observed across the full range of power tested, 100–999 W (4.2%, 95% LoA –20.1% to 28.6%), due to larger biases of 100–200 and 750–999 W (4.5%, 95% LoA –2.3% to 11.3%, and 13.0%, 95% LoA –24.4% to 50.3%), respectively.

Conclusions:

Compared with a CALRIG, the KICKR has acceptable accuracy reporting a small mean bias and narrow LoA in the measurement of power output of 250–700 W at cadences of 80–120 rpm. Caution should be applied by coaches and sports scientists when using the KICKR at power outputs of <200 W and >750 W due to the greater variability in recorded power.

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Sally J. McLaine, Karen A. Ginn, Cecilia M. Kitic, James W. Fell and Marie-Louise Bird

Context: The reliable measurement of shoulder strength is important when assessing athletes involved in overhead activities. Swimmers' shoulders are subject to repetitive humeral elevation and consequently have a high risk of developing movement-control issues and pain. Shoulder-strength tests performed in positions of elevation assist with the detection of strength deficits that may affect injury and performance. The reliability of isometric strength tests performed in positions of humeral elevation without manual stabilization, which is a typical clinical scenario, has not been established. Objective: To establish the relative and absolute intrarater reliability of shoulder-strength tests functional to swimming in 3 body positions commonly used in the clinical setting. Design: Repeated-measures reliability study. Setting: Research laboratory. Subjects: 15 university students and staff (mean ± SD age 24 ± 8.2 y).Intervention: Isometric shoulder-strength tests were performed in positions of humeral elevation (flexion and extension in 140° abduction in the scapular plane, internal and external rotation in 90° abduction) on subjects without shoulder pain in supine, prone, and sitting. Subjects were tested by 1 examiner with a handheld dynamometer and retested after 48 h. Main Outcome Measures: Relative reliability (ICC3,1) values with 95% CI. Absolute reliability was reported by minimal detectable change (MDC). Results: Good to excellent intrarater reliability was found for all shoulder-strength tests (ICC .87-.99). Intrarater reliability was not affected by body position. MDC% was <16% for every test and ≤11% for tests performed in supine. Conclusions: Shoulder flexion, extension, and internal- and external-rotation strength tests performed in humeral elevation demonstrated excellent to good intrarater reliability regardless of body position. A strength change of more than 15% in any position can be considered meaningful.

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Li Ming Wen, Hidde P. van der Ploeg, James Kite, Aaron Cashmore and Chris Rissel

Assessing young children’s physical activity and sedentary behavior can be challenging and costly. This study aimed to assess the validity of a brief survey about activity preferences as a proxy of physical activity and of a 7-day activity diary, both completed by the parents and using accelerometers as a reference measure. Thirty-four parents and their children (aged 3–5 years) who attended childcare centers in Sydney (Australia) were recruited for the study. Parents were asked to complete a 9-item brief survey about activity preferences of their child and a 7-day diary recording the child’s physical activity and sedentary behaviors. Both measures were compared with accelerometer data collected from the child over the same period as the diary survey. The findings suggest that parent completed diaries have acceptable correlation coefficients with accelerometer measures and could be considered in future research assessing physical activity and sedentary behavior of children aged 3–5 years.