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Daniel Bok and Igor Jukić

mostly responsible for inducing muscle damage. Studies also show that prematch values can be influenced by a player’s aerobic fitness, 10 whereas postmatch values can be influenced by lower-limb strength. 11 Aerobically less fit Australian rules football players present higher prematch [CK], even with

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Niall Casserly, Ross Neville, Massimiliano Ditroilo and Adam Grainger

typically possess greater body mass than backs, owing to their role of gaining and retaining possession, whereas backs typically attempt to avoid contact and, therefore, require greater speed and evasion qualities and greater levels of aerobic fitness. 17 These differences are important to consider when

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Kenneth H. Pitetti, Daniel A. Yarmer and Bo Fernhall

The purpose of this study was to compare the aerobic fitness and body mass index (BMI) of children and adolescents (8-18 yr) with and without mild mental retardation (MR). Sample size of participants with MR but without Down syndrome was 169 males and 99 females. Sample size of participants without MR was 289 males and 317 females. Analysis was made by gender and age: children (8-10 yr); early adolescents (11-14 yr); and late adolescents (15-18 yr). The 20-m shuttle run test (20 MST) was used to assess field test performance and predicted aerobic fitness. For all age groups, females and males without MR ran significantly more laps and had a significantly higher predicted aerobic fitness (V̇O2peak: ml $$ kg-1 $$ min-1) than their peers with MR. Additionally, participants with MR tended to have higher BMI than their peers without MR. The results of this study indicate that children and adolescents with MR have lower exercise capacity, lower aerobic fitness, and higher BMIs than their peers without MR.

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Andrea Di Blasio, Pascal Izzicupo, Emanuele D’Angelo, Sandra Melanzi, Ines Bucci, Sabina Gallina, Angela Di Baldassarre and Giorgio Napolitano

Purpose:

High-intensity aerobic interval training (AIT) has been reported to be more effective than continuous aerobic training (CoAT) to improve metabolic health. The aim of our study was to investigate whether moderate-intensity AIT is more effective than CoAT on metabolic health when applied to a walking training program.

Design/Methods:

Thirty-two postmenopausal women (55.37 ± 3.46 years) were investigated for body composition, plasma glucose, insulin, lipids, adiponectin, HOMA-IR, HOMA-AD, aerobic fitness, dietary habits, and spontaneous physical activity, and randomly assigned to one of two different walking training programs: CoAT or AIT.

Results:

CoAT and AIT elicited the same physiological benefits, including: reduction of plasma glucose, insulin, HOMA-IR and HOMA-AD, and increase of plasma HDL-C, adiponectin, and aerobic fitness.

Conclusions:

An AIT scheme as part of an outdoor walking training program elicits the same physiological adaptations as a CoAT scheme, probably because walking does not promote exercise intensities that elicit greater effects.

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Peter A. Hosick, Robert G. McMurray and Dan M. Cooper

The relationship between peak aerobic fitness (peakVO2) and plasma leptin was assessed in 25 normal (BMI < 85th %tile) and 25 overweight (BMI > 85th %tile) youth, ages 7–17 years. In the overall analysis peakVO2 was related to leptin when expressed in mL/kg/min (R 2 = .516, p < .0001), or as ml/kgFFM/min (R 2 = .127, p = .01). The relationships between peakVO2 and leptin were no longer significant when percent bodyfat was added to the models. In subanalyses by weight groups, peakVO2: leptin relationships were not evident for normal weight, but remained for overweight youth. In conclusion the relationship between aerobic fitness and leptin in youth is dependent upon weight status.

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Iñigo Mujika, Juanma Santisteban, Paco Angulo and Sabino Padilla

A 7-week, 10-session individual training program was implemented with a youth elite football (soccer) player who had been underperforming because of poor aerobic fitness. The intervention focused on developing aerobic power and high lactate production and contributed to a 32.3% improvement in a football-specific performance test. The player was able to return to play and exceed expected performance levels during competitive match play.

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Julian D. Pillay, Tracy L. Kolbe-Alexander, Karin I. Proper, Willem van Mechelen and Estelle V. Lambert

Background:

Brisk walking is recommended as a form of health-enhancing physical activity. This study determines the steps/minute rate corresponding to self-paced brisk walking (SPBW); a predicted steps/minute rate for moderate physical activity (MPA) and a comparison of the 2 findings.

Methods:

A convenience sample (N = 58: 34 men, 24 women, 31.7 ± 7.7yrs), wearing pedometers and a heart rate (HR) monitor, performed SPBW for 10 minutes and 5 indoor sessions, regulated by a metronome (ranging from 60–120 steps/minute). Using steps/minute and HR data of the trials, a steps/minute rate for MPA was predicted. Adjustments were subsequently made for aerobic fitness (using maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) estimates), age, and sex as possible contributors to stepping rate differences.

Results:

Average steps/minute rate for SPBW was 118 ± 9 (116 ± 9; 121 ± 8 for men/women, respectively; P = .022); predicted steps/minute rate for MPA was 122 ± 37 (127 ± 36; 116 ± 39 for men/women, respectively; P < .99) and was similar to steps/minute rate of SPBW (P = .452), even after adjusting for age, sex, and aerobic fitness.

Conclusion:

Steps/minute rates of SPBW correlates closely with targeted HR for MPA, independent of aerobic fitness; predicted steps/minute rate for MPA relates closely to steps/minute rates of SPBW. Findings support current PA messages that use the term brisk walking as a reference for MPA.

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J. Dru Marshall and Marcel Bouffard

The purposes of the study were to determine if there is a difference in gross motor skill movement competencies between obese and nonobese children; whether Quality Daily Physical Education (QDPE) programs facilitated the development of movement skill in obese children; and whether there is an association between aerobic fitness level and motor performance results. A 2 Sex (male, female) × 2 Group (obese, nonobese) × 2 Age Categories (Grade 1, Grade 4) × 2 Program (QDPE, non-QDPE) completely randomized factorial design was used. Movement competency (Test of Gross Motor Development (TGMD)) and aerobic fitness (20 m shuttle run test) were assessed in 100 age-, sex-, and school-matched obese and nonobese pairs. A significant three-way interaction of Program × Group × Sex was found for the TGMD total score, suggesting that QDPE programs facilitate the development of gross motor skills in those children who are less movement competent to begin with, regardless of their obesity status. Correlations showed that aerobic fitness level was predictive of the TGMD scores. This study provides evidence in support of QDPE programs.

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Trynke Hoekstra, Colin A. Boreham, Liam J. Murray and Jos W.R. Twisk

Background:

It is not clear what the relative contribution is of specific components of physical fitness (aerobic and muscular) to cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. We investigated associations between aerobic fitness (endurance) and muscular fitness (power) and CVD risk factors.

Methods:

Data were obtained from the Young Hearts project, a representative sample of 12- and 15-year-old boys and girls from Northern Ireland (N = 2016). Aerobic fitness was determined by the 20-m shuttle run test, muscular fitness by the Sargent jump test. CVD risk factors included sum of skinfolds, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, serum total cholesterol (TC), HDL cholesterol, and TC:HDL ratio. Several linear regression analyses were conducted for 4 age and gender groups separately, with the risk factor as the outcome variable.

Results:

Significant associations between aerobic fitness and a healthy CVD risk profile were found. These observed relationships were independent of power, whereas the (few) relationships between muscular fitness and the risk factors were partly explained by endurance.

Conclusions:

Tailored, preventive strategies during adolescence, incorporating endurance rather than power sports, could be encouraged to help prevent CVD. This is important because existing studies propose that healthiness during adulthood is founded on healthiness in adolescence.

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Kim D. Lu, Krikor Manoukian, Shlomit Radom-Aizik, Dan M. Cooper and Stanley P. Galant

Obesity increases the risk of asthma throughout life but the underlying mechanisms linking these all too common threats to child health are poorly understood. Acute bouts of exercise, aerobic fitness, and levels of physical activity clearly play a role in the pathogenesis and/or management of both childhood obesity and asthma. Moreover, both obesity and physical inactivity are associated with asthma symptoms and response to therapy (a particularly challenging feature of obesity-related asthma). In this article, we review current understandings of the link between physical activity, aerobic fitness and the asthma-obesity link in children and adolescents (e.g., the impact of chronic low-grade inflammation, lung mechanics, and direct effects of metabolic health on the lung). Gaps in our knowledge regarding the physiological mechanisms linking asthma, obesity and exercise are often compounded by imprecise estimations of adiposity and challenges of assessing aerobic fitness in children. Addressing these gaps could lead to practical interventions and clinical approaches that could mitigate the profound health care crisis of the increasing comorbidity of asthma, physical inactivity, and obesity in children.