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Valéria Cristina Provenza Paschoal and Olga Maria Silverio Amancio

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the body composition, dietary intake, use of nutritional supplements, and biochemical status of 8 Brazilian male elite swimmers, aged 18–21 years, participants at a national swimming competition. Data from the athletes were obtained through a 4-day food record, a fasting blood sample, and anthropometric measurements. The anthropometric results showed that body composition was compatible with sport category. The dietary assessment showed an adequate ingestion of calories, vitamins, and mineral, with the exception of calcium, for which only half of the sample reached the recommendation. The results also indicated low carbohydrate and high protein and cholesterol intakes. Of the swimmers, 62.5% and 25% consumed synthetic aminoacids and antioxidants supplements, respectively. The biochemical indices of the nutritional status were within normal limits in all swimmers, with the exception of creatine-kinase, which was above the recommended level, indicating muscle degradation probably due to poor carbohydrate intake. In conclusion, the results suggest the importance of nutritional education to promote a balanced intake, provide all nutrients in optimal amounts, inhibit unnecessary ingestion of nutritional supplements, maintain ideal performance, and improve the swimmers’ health status.

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Roozbeh Naemi, Stelios G. Psycharakis, Carla McCabe, Chris Connaboy and Ross H. Sanders

Glide efficiency, the ability of a body to minimize deceleration over the glide, can change with variations in the body’s size and shape. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between glide efficiency and the size and shape characteristics of swimmers. Eight male and eight female swimmers performed a series of horizontal glides at a depth of 70 cm below the surface. Glide efficiency parameters were calculated for velocities ranging from 1.4 to 1.6 m/s for female swimmers (and at the Reynolds number of 3.5 million) and from 1.6 to 1.8 m/s for male swimmers (and at the Reynolds number of 4.5 million). Several morphological indices were calculated to account for the shape characteristics, with the use of a photogrammetric method. Relationships between the variables of interest were explored with correlations, while repeated-measures ANOVA was used to assess within-group differences between different velocities for each gender group. Glide efficiency of swimmers increased when velocity decreased. Some morphological indices and postural angles showed a significant correlation with glide efficiency. The glide coefficient was significantly correlated to the chest to waist taper index for both gender groups. For the male group, the glide coefficient correlated significantly to the fineness ratio of upper body, the chest to hip cross-section. For the female group the glide coefficient had a significant correlation with the waist to hip taper index. The findings suggested that gliding efficiency was more dependent on shape characteristics and appropriate postural angles rather than being dependent on size characteristics.

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Kevin Till, Ben Jones, John O’Hara, Matthew Barlow, Amy Brightmore, Matthew Lees and Karen Hind

Purpose:

To compare the body size and 3-compartment body composition between academy and senior professional rugby league players using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA).

Methods:

Academy (age 18.1 ± 1.1 y, n = 34) and senior (age 26.2 ± 4.6 y, n = 63) rugby league players received 1 total-body DXA scan. Height, body mass, and body-fat percentage alongside total and regional fat mass, lean mass, and bone mineral content (BMC) were compared. Independent t tests with Cohen d effect sizes and multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA), controlling for height and body mass, with partial eta-squared (η2) effect sizes, were used to compare total and regional body composition.

Results:

Senior players were taller (183.2 ± 5.8 vs 179.2 ± 5.7 cm, P = .001, d = 0.70) and heavier (96.5 ± 9.3 vs 86.5 ± 9.0 kg, P < .001, d = 1.09) with lower body-fat percentage (16.3 ± 3.7 vs 18.0 ± 3.7%, P = .032, d = 0.46) than academy players. MANCOVA identified significant overall main effects for total and regional body composition between academy and senior players. Senior players had lower total fat mass (P < .001, η 2 = 0.15), greater total lean mass (P < .001, η 2 = 0.14), and greater total BMC (P = .001, η 2 = 0.12) than academy players. For regional sites, academy players had significantly greater fat mass at the legs (P < .001, η 2 = 0.29) than senior players.

Conclusions:

The lower age, height, body mass, and BMC of academy players suggest that these players are still developing musculoskeletal characteristics. Gradual increases in lean mass and BMC while controlling fat mass is an important consideration for practitioners working with academy rugby league players, especially in the lower body.

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Matteo Levi Micheli, Luca Pagani, Mario Marella, Massimo Gulisano, Antonio Piccoli, Fabrizio Angelini, Martin Burtscher and Hannes Gatterer

Purpose:

Bioelectrical-impedance standards (resistance, reactance, and phase angle) are well established for the normal population or in the clinical setting and are considered indicators for cell mass, cell function, and hydration status. However, such standards do not exist for the male soccer population. Therefore, the goal of the current investigation was to provide a set of bioelectrical-impedance data of a large sample of soccer players with different performance levels.

Methods:

A sample of 893 players, registered in all Italian soccer divisions, was divided into 5 groups according to their performance level. Whole-body impedance measurements were performed during the first half of the competitive period. Besides estimation of body composition, bioelectrical-impedance vector analysis (BIVA) was performed. BIVA does not depend on equations and displays differences in hydration and body-cell mass (BCM). Individual vectors can be classified by using the 50%, 75%, and 95% tolerance ellipse.

Results:

In comparison with the other divisions and the normal population, the mean vector of the elite level showed a shift to the left (P < .001). Compared with the elite level, players of a lower performance level had lower phase angles, BCM, and fat-free mass.

Conclusions:

In conclusion, soccer players belong to a specific population. Muscle mass and function, as indicated by BCM and phase angle, increase with increasing performance level. The soccer-specific tolerance ellipses might be used for classifying individual vectors and to define target regions for low-level players.

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Neil Armstrong and Jo Welsman

with surface anthropometry such as skinfolds ( 31 ). Specifically, a ratio of mass to stature 2 cannot reflect maturational changes in fat accumulation and patterning in girls. We suggest that classifying young people as overweight by using a direct measure of adiposity may better enable more valid

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Hans Kainz, Hoa X. Hoang, Chris Stockton, Roslyn R. Boyd, David G. Lloyd and Christopher P. Carty

the generic model to the individual’s anthropometry. Linear scaling methods use the ratios between the participant’s segment dimensions and that of the model to scale the generic model. 5 The participant’s segment dimensions are estimated from the three-dimensional (3D) location of experimental

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Claudia Emes, Beth Velde, Mary Moreau, Douglas D. Murdoch and Rebecca Trussell

Two methods of introducing obese adolescents to aerobic exercise were compared. A fast-start group began with five aerobic sessions per week and gradually reduced these to three over a period of 12 weeks. A slow-start group began with one per week and gradually increased to three. A control group had an equivalent amount of time in interactive group sessions and nonaerobic activity. The program was assessed by physical fitness, anthropometry, and attendance. Results were analyzed by multivariate analysis. The method of introducing exercise to the subjects produced no significant differences on measures of fitness or anthropometry. Significant effects for time were shown for strength, push-ups, body mass index, the sum of five skinfolds, gluteal and abdominal circumferences, weight, and percent overweight. Significant differences in the absenteeism rates were shown among groups. However, no relationship was found between absenteeism and changes in weight or overall fitness levels.

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H. Jan Dordel

Individuals with severe physical and psychomotor modifications after a brain injury need measures of motor training beyond the usual physiotherapy. The effects of an intensive mobility training in the phase of late rehabilitation are reported in two case studies. The coordinative and conditional progresses were controlled by the methods of photographic anthropometry, light-track registration, and bicycle ergometry. Improvements were found in posture and dynamic endurance in correlation with the generally improving motor control. Tests of everyday relevant movements revealed qualitative progresses in the sense of increased motor precision and economy.

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Gregory D. Wells, Jane Schneiderman-Walker and Michael Plyley

The purpose of this research was to develop a comprehensive normative database of the physiological characteristics of elite swimmers. Data were obtained from 195 elite swimmers (89 males and 106 females) ages 12 to 18 years. Six protocols were used to measure variables in the following categories: descriptive characteristics, cardiovascular, respiratory, strength and power, body composition, and anthropometry. Significant effects of gender and age were identified for a number of variables. These data could be used for the physiological assessment and talent identification of swimmers in comparison with other populations.

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Ezzedine Bouhlel, Myriam Denguezli, Monia Zaouali, Zouhair Tabka and Roy J. Shephard

Purpose:

To evaluate the effect of Ramadan fasting on parameters of insulin resistance in trained athletes at rest and after aerobic exercise.

Methods:

Nine male rugby players (age 19 ± 2 yr, height 1.78 ± 0.74 m) were tested 3 times: 1 week before observance of Ramadan (C), at the end of the first week (R1), and during the fourth week (R2). They performed a progressive cycle-ergometer test at each visit. Data collected at rest and at the end of aerobic exercise included simple anthropometry (body mass, body-mass index, body fat, fat-free mass), biochemical parameters (serum glucose, cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, creatinine, and serum proteins), and selected hormone concentrations (plasma insulin, leptin, and adiponectin).

Results:

Ramadan fasting was associated with a reduction of body mass and body fat (R2 vs. C, p < .01) without significant change in leptin or adiponectin levels.

Conclusion:

Lipolysis might have occurred because of increased plasma triglycerides and HDL cholesterol concentrations.