The literature suggests that the current athlete development models do not reflect the multifaceted developmental pathways in Paralympic sport. This study aimed to analyze how parasport athletes progress through developmental phases of an athletic career pathway by comparing differences in their trajectories based on the nature of the impairment (acquired or congenital), age, and sex. A total of 345 para-athletes representing 15 sports completed an online survey. Results showed that the developmental phases for athletes with acquired impairment are of shorter duration, taking 4.5 years to progress from the attraction to the elite phase, while athletes with congenital impairment take 6 years. Athletes with congenital impairment start in parasport approximately 8 years younger and win medals in international competitions 7 years earlier than athletes with acquired impairment. Insights gathered in this study have the potential to enhance further thinking toward the genesis of specific models of para-athlete development.
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Jacqueline Martins Patatas, Jens De Rycke, Veerle De Bosscher, and Rafael Lima Kons
Rodrigo Ghedini Gheller, Rafael Lima Kons, Juliano Dal Pupo, and Daniele Detanico
The aim of this systematic review was to investigate the effect of specific sprint and vertical jump training interventions on transfer of speed–power parameters. The data search was carried out in three electronic databases (PubMed, SCOPUS, and SPORTDiscus), and 28 articles were selected (13 on vertical jump training and 15 on sprint training). We followed the PRISMA criteria for the construction of this systematic review and used the Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) scale to assess the quality of all studies. It included studies with a male population (athletes and nonathletes, n = 512) from 18 to 30 years old who performed a vertical jump or sprint training intervention. The effect size was calculated from the values of means and SDs pre- and posttraining intervention. The percentage changes and transfer of training effect were calculated for vertical jump training and sprint training through measures of vertical jump and sprint performance. The results indicated that both training interventions (vertical jump training and sprint training) induced improvements in vertical jump and linear sprint performance as well as transfer of training to speed–power performance. However, vertical jump training produced greater specific and training transfer effects on linear sprint than sprint training (untrained skill). It was concluded that vertical jump training and sprint training were effective in increasing specific actions of vertical jump and linear sprint performance, respectively; however, vertical jump training was shown to be a superior alternative due to the higher transfer rate.
Rafael Lima Kons, Marina Saldanha da Silva Athayde, Lara Antunes, Jaqueline Santos Silva Lopes, and Daniele Detanico
Context: The participation of judo athletes with disabilities in competitions has increased over the years as well as the burden of sports-related injuries and illnesses in this population. However, there is limited knowledge about sports-related injuries in judo athletes with different disabilities. Objective: To investigate the prevalence of injuries in judo athletes with disabilities, considering the different impairment groups, magnitude of injury (ie, mechanism, nature, and severity of injury), and specific body parts. Design: Cross-sectional study (level of evidence, 3). Setting: Brazilian Judo athletes with disabilities. Patients: Fifty-one judo athletes with disabilities (15 men and 36 women) participated in this study. Main Outcome Measures: Data were obtained from an adapted injury report form. The prevalence of injuries was assessed, considering type of impairment, body parts, mechanisms, and severity as well as differences between male and female athletes, with the significance level set at P < .05. Results: The results demonstrated a high prevalence of injuries in female athletes with visual impairment (n = 11, 73.3%) and male athletes with amputations (n = 14, 38.8%). A high prevalence was found in the national group, especially for male athletes (n = 29, 80.5%). Among athletes who had injuries, 69.4% (n = 12) of male and 80.0% (n = 25) of female athletes’ injuries occurred due to direct contact with other athletes, and 72.2% (n = 26) of male and 86.6% (n = 13) of female athletes’ injuries were in the training environment. The magnitude of injuries ranged from moderate to severe for male and female athletes. The knee (n = 25, 49.0%) and shoulder (n = 12, 23.5%) were the body parts most affected by injuries in both male and female athletes. Conclusion: A large percentage of judo athletes with disabilities reported experiencing an injury during the previous 2 years; percentages were greater in athletes with visual and physical impairment. Moreover, most injuries occurred in the knee or shoulder, during training, and in direct contact with other athletes and were of severe magnitude.