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James P. Veale, Alan J. Pearce and John S. Carlson

Purpose:

The aim of this study was to test the reliability and construct validity of a reactive agility test (RAT), designed for Australian Football (AF).

Methods:

Study I tested the reliability of the RAT, with 20 elite junior AF players (17.44 ± 0.55 y) completing the test on two occasions separated by 1 wk. Study II tested its construct validity by comparing the performance of 60 participants (16.60 ± 0.50 y) spread over three aged-matched population groups: 20 athletes participating in a State Under-18 AF league who had represented their state at national competitions (elite), 20 athletes participating in the same league who had not represented their state (subelite), and 20 healthy males who did not play AF (controls).

Results:

Test-retest reliability reported a strong correlation (0.91), with no significant difference (P = .22) between the mean results (1.74 ± 0.07 s and 1.76 ± 0.07 s) obtained (split 2+3). Nonparametric tests (Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney) revealed both AF groups performed significantly faster on all measures than the control group (ranging from P = .001 to .005), with significant differences also reported between the two AF groups (ranging from P = .001 to .046). Stepwise discriminant analyses found total time discriminated between the groups, correctly classifying 75% of the participants.

Conclusions:

The RAT used within this study demonstrates evidence of reliability and construct validity. It further suggests the ability of a reactive component within agility test designs to discriminate among athletes of different competition levels, highlighting its importance within training activities.

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Luiz de França Bahia Loureiro Jr and Paulo Barbosa de Freitas

Context:

Badminton requires open and fast actions toward the shuttlecock, but there is no specific agility test for badminton players with specific movements.

Purpose:

To develop an agility test that simultaneously assesses perception and motor capacity and examine the test’s concurrent and construct validity and its test–retest reliability.

Method:

The Badcamp agility test consists of running as fast as possible to 6 targets placed on the corners and middle points of a rectangular area (5.6 × 4.2 m) from the start position located in the center of it, following visual stimuli presented in a luminous panel. The authors recruited 43 badminton players (17–32 y old) to evaluate concurrent (with shuttle-run agility test—SRAT) and construct validity and test–retest reliability.

Results:

Results revealed that Badcamp presents concurrent and construct validity, as its performance is strongly related to SRAT (ρ = 0.83, P < .001), with performance of experts being better than nonexpert players (P < .01). In addition, Badcamp is reliable, as no difference (P = .07) and a high intraclass correlation (ICC = .93) were found in the performance of the players on 2 different occasions.

Conclusions:

The findings indicate that Badcamp is an effective, valid, and reliable tool to measure agility, allowing coaches and athletic trainers to evaluate players’ athletic condition and training effectiveness and possibly detect talented individuals in this sport.

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Olfa Turki, Wissem Dhahbi, Johnny Padulo, Riadh Khalifa, Sana Ridène, Khaled Alamri, Mirjana Milić, Sabri Gueid and Karim Chamari

research identified substantial improvements in explosive activities (ie, sprinting, jumping, and agility) using various warm-up strategies, few studies have focused on team sports. 4 , 5 Dynamic stretching (DS) warm-ups must be designed for the specific needs of both the player and the sporting activity

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Brian J. McMorrow, Massimiliano Ditroilo and Brendan Egan

Acceleration, maximum speed, and agility are components of success in a number of sports, so specific training procedures for each quality should be included in conditioning programs. 1 However, as training time is limited even at the elite level, it can be impractical to train each quality

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Matt Spencer, David Pyne, Juanma Santisteban and Iñigo Mujika

Variations in rates of growth and development in young football players can influence relationships among various fitness qualities.

Purpose:

To investigate the relationships between repeated-sprint ability and other fundamental fitness qualities of acceleration, agility, explosive leg power, and aerobic conditioning through the age groups of U1 1 to U18 in highly trained junior football players.

Methods:

Male players (n = 119) across the age groups completed a fitness assessment battery over two testing sessions. The first session consisted of countermovement jumps without and with arm swing, 15-m sprint run, 15-m agility run, and the 20-m Shuttle Run (U11 to U15) or the Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Test, Level 1 (U16 to U18). The players were tested for repeated-sprint ability in the second testing session using a protocol of 6 × 30-m sprints on 30 s with an active recovery.

Results:

The correlations of repeated-sprint ability with the assorted fitness tests varied considerably between the age groups, especially for agility (r = .02 to .92) and explosive leg power (r = .04 to .84). Correlations of repeated sprint ability with acceleration (r = .48 to .93) and aerobic conditioning (r = .28 to .68) were less variable with age.

Conclusion:

Repeated-sprint ability associates differently with other fundamental fitness tests throughout the teenage years in highly trained football players, although stabilization of these relationships occurs by the age of 18 y. Coaches in junior football should prescribe physical training accounting for variations in short-term disruptions or impairment of physical performance during this developmental period.

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Sylwia Merkiel and Wojciech Chalcarz

The aim of this study was to assess physical fitness in 6- to 7-yr-old children and determine if there is any relationship between children’s physical fitness, their urine iodine status, and their body-mass index (BMI). The studied population included 121 children from southern Poland. Physical fitness was measured using a physical fitness test for children age 3–7 yr. Urinary iodine concentrations were measured in the children’s first urine output on waking using the modified PAMM (Program Against Micronutrient Malnutrition) method. Body height and weight were measured and BMI was calculated. The subjects were characterized by low physical fitness. Boys obtained better results in agility, power, and strength exercises (p ≤ .05). In girls, 11 correlation coefficients between the scores obtained in the physical fitness test, urinary iodine, and anthropometric measures were statistically significant, and in boys, only 2. BMI correlated positively with agility in girls and with strength in girls and boys. Our study revealed low physical fitness in Polish 6- to 7-yr-old children, which shows the need to implement programs aimed at increasing their physical activity. The relationship found between physical fitness and urine iodine status in girls indicates that future research in this area is needed.

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Morteza Ahmadi, Giti Torkaman, Sedigheh Kahrizi, Mojdeh Ghabaee and Leila Dadashi Arani

Context:

Despite the widespread use of whole-body vibration (WBV), especially in recent years, its neurophysiological mechanism is still unclear and it is yet to be determined whether acute and short-term WBV exposure produce neurogenic enhancement for agility.

Objective:

To compare the acute and short-term effects of WBV on the H-reflex-recruitment curve and agility.

Design:

Cross-over study.

Setting:

Clinical electrophysiology laboratory.

Participants:

20 nonathlete male volunteers (mean age 24.85 ± 3.03 y).

Main Outcome Measures:

Subjects were randomly divided into 2 groups, H-reflex and agility. In the sham protocol, subjects stood on the turned-off vibration plate while maintaining the semisquat position, and then, after a 2-wk washout, vibration-training sessions were performed in the same position with a frequency of 30 Hz and an amplitude of 3 mm. H-reflex-recruitment curve was recorded and the agility test of a shuttle run was performed before and after the first session and also 48 h after the 11th session in both sham and vibration-training protocols.

Results:

Acute effects of WBV training caused a significant decrease of threshold amplitude and H-max/M-max (P = .01 and P = .04, respectively). Short-term WBV training significantly decreased the threshold intensity of the soleus H-reflex-recruitment curve (P = .01) and caused a decrease and increase respectively, in the threshold intensity and the area under the recruitment curve.

Conclusions:

The results suggest an inhibitory effect of acute WBV training on the H-reflex response.

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Greg Cox, Iñigo Mujika, Douglas Tumilty and Louise Burke

This study investigated the effects of acute creatine (Cr) supplementation on the performance of elite female soccer players undertaking an exercise protocol simulating match play. On two occasions, 7 days apart, 12 players performed 5 X 11-min exercise testing blocks interspersed with 1 min of rest. Each block consisted of 11 all-out 20-m running sprints, 2 agility runs, and 1 precision ball-kicking drill, separated by recovery 20-m walks, jogs, and runs. After the initial testing session, subjects were assigned to either a CREATINE (5 g of Cr, 4 times per day for 6 days) or a PLACEBO group (same dosage of a glucose polymer) using a double-blind research design. Body mass (BM) increased (61.7 ± 8.9 to 62.5 ± 8.9 kg, p < .01) in the CREATINE group; however, no change was observed in the PLACEBO group (63.4 ± 2.9 kg to 63.7 ± 2.5 kg). No overall change in 20-m sprint times and agility run times were observed, although the CREATINE group achieved faster post-supplementation times in sprints 11, 13, 14, 16, 21, 23, 25, 32, and 39 (p < .05), and agility runs3,5,and8 (p < .05). The accuracy of shooting was unaffected in both groups. In conclusion, acute Cr supplementation improved performance of some repeated sprint and agility tasks simulating soccer match play, despite an increase in BM.

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Diane E. Adamo, Susan Ann Talley and Allon Goldberg

Age-related changes in physical abilities, such as strength and flexibility, contribute to functional losses. However, older individuals may be unaware of what specific physical abilities compromise independent functioning. Three groups of women, aged 60 to 69, 70 to 79, and 80 to 92 years, were administered the Senior Fitness Test (SFT) to determine age differences in physical abilities and risk for functional losses. The oldest group showed significant differences in lower body strength, aerobic endurance, and agility and dynamic balance when compared with the other groups who performed similarly. Across all groups, a faster rate of decline was found for lower body strength (50.6%) and dynamic balance and agility (45.7%) than upper body strength (21.3%) and aerobic endurance (33.6%). Criterion-referenced (CR) fitness standards suggested that 45% of the individuals were at risk for loss of independent functioning. This study highlights age-related differences in physical abilities and the risk for the loss of independence in later life.

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Guillaume Mornieux, Elmar Weltin, Monika Pauls, Franz Rott and Albert Gollhofer

agility with the 5-10-5 yards test, jump height, ie, leg muscle power, with countermovement jumps (CMJ) and core strength with a cable lift test. This latter test targets the action of hips, torso rotators, upper back, chest, and shoulders while turning the trunk away from the strength machine as the