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  • Author: Joan M. Eckerson x
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Joan M. Eckerson, Dona J. Housh, Terry J. Housh and Glen O. Johnson

The purpose of this investigation was to determine the changes in body composition, isokinetic strength, and muscular power in high school wrestlers across a season of competition. Wrestlers were measured (preseason and postseason) for body composition and isokinetic peak torque for flexion and extension of the dominant forearm and leg. Each subject also completed Wingate anaerobic tests to determine changes in mean power and peak power (PP) of the legs. The results indicated that body weight (BW), fat weight, and percent fat decreased (p < .002) across the wrestling season. PP and absolute peak torque for forearm and leg extension (LE) at 30°·s−1; forearm flexion (FF) at 30, 180, and 300°·s−1; and leg flexion (LF) at 180 and 300°·s−1 were significantly (p < .05) lower postseason. Relative peak torque (adjusted for BW) decreased (p < .05) across the season for LE at 30°·s−1 as well as FF and LF at 180°·s−1. Therefore, changes in BW were not associated with functional advantages in terms of strength or muscular power.

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Terry J. Housh, Jeffrey R. Stout, Glen O. Johnson, Dona J. Housh and Joan M. Eckerson

The purpose of the present study was to determine the validity of near-infrared interactance (NIR) estimates of percent body fat (% fat) using Futrex-5000, Futrex-5000A, and Futrex-1000 instruments in youth wrestlers (age, M ± SD = 11.4 ± 1.5 years) by comparing them to % fat values from underwater weighing. Fifty-eight members of youth wrestling clubs (% fat, M ± SD = 10.7 ± 5.1% fat) volunteered to serve as subjects. The statistical analyses included examination of the constant error (CE), standard error of estimate (SEE), correlation coefficient (r), and total error (TE). The results indicated that the errors (TE = 8.0–16.2% fat) associated with the NIR instruments were too large to be of practical value for estimating % fat in young male athletes. It is recommended that (a) the instrument generated NIR % fat estimates be modified based on the CE values in the present investigation such that the CE = 0, and (b) the modified NIR % fat estimates be cross-validated on independent samples of young male athletes.

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Sharon A. Evans, Joan M. Eckerson, Terry J. Housh and Glen O. Johnson

This investigation examined age related differences in the muscular power of the arms in high school wrestlers. Seventy-five volunteers (M age ±SD = 16.3 ±1.2 yrs) were stratified into four age groups (≤15.00; 15.01−16.00; 16.01−17.00, and ≥17.01 yrs) corresponding approximately to the freshman through senior years of high school. Mean power (MP) and peak power (PP) were measured using an arm crank Wingate Anaerobic Test, and body composition was assessed via underwater weighing. The results indicated significant (p<0.05) group differences for absolute MP and PP as well as for relative MP and PP (covaried for body weight). No significant differences were found when MP and PP were adjusted for fat-free weight (FFW). The results suggested that the age related increases in muscular power of the arms were a function of increases in FFW across age.

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Terry J. Housh, Glen O. Johnson, Dona J. Housh, Jeffrey R. Stout, Joseph P. Weir, Loree L. Weir and Joan M. Eckerson

The purpose of the present study was to examine age-related changes in isokinetic leg flexion and extension peak torque (PT), PT/body weight (PT/BW), and PT/fat-free weight (PT/FFW) in young wrestlers. Male wrestlers (N = 108; age M ± SD = 11.3 ± 1.5 years) volunteered to be measured for peak torque at 30, 180, and 300° · s−1. In addition, underwater weighing was performed to determine body composition characteristics. The sample was divided into six age groups (8.1−8.9, n = 10; 9.0−9.9, n= 11; 10.0−10.9, n = 25; 11.0−11.9, n = 22; 12.0−12.9, n = 28; 13.0−13.9, n = 12), and repeated measures ANOVAs with Tukey post hoc comparisons showed increases across age for PT, PT/BW, and PT/FFW. The results of this study indicated that there were age-related increases in peak torque that could not be accounted for by changes in BW or FFW. It is possible that either an increase in muscle mass per unit of FFW, neural maturation, or both, contributes to the increase in strength across age in young male athletes.