This paper reviews the findings from a longitudinal study following the growth and development of young British athletes. Four sports were studied: gymnastics, soccer, swimming, and tennis. Four main areas of concern were identified and studied: sports injury, growth and development, psychological and psychosocial problems, and physiological functioning. No evidence was found to suggest that training affected growth or sexual development. The incidence and severity of injuries was low. Athletes were shown to have a healthy lifestyle. The negative effects of intensive training at a young age were outweighed by the many social, psychological and health benefits that a serious commitment to sport brought these young people.
Adam D.G. Baxter-Jones and Peter J. Helms
Paul J. McCarthy, Marc V. Jones, Chris G. Harwood and Steve Olivier
One reason sport psychologists teach psychological skills is to enhance performance in sport; but the value of psychological skills for young athletes is questionable because of the qualitative and quantitative differences between children and adults in their understanding of abstract concepts such as mental skills. To teach these skills effectively to young athletes, sport psychologists need to appreciate what young athletes implicitly understand about such skills because maturational (e.g., cognitive, social) and environmental (e.g., coaches) factors can influence the progressive development of children and youth. In the present qualitative study, we explored young athletes’ (aged 10–15 years) understanding of four basic psychological skills: goal setting, mental imagery, self-talk, and relaxation. Young athletes (n= 118: 75 males and 43 females) completed an open-ended questionnaire to report their understanding of these four basic psychological skills. Compared with the older youth athletes, the younger youth athletes were less able to explain the meaning of each psychological skill. Goal setting and mental imagery were better understood than self-talk and relaxation. Based on these fndings, sport psychologists should consider adapting interventions and psychoeducational programs to match young athletes’ age and developmental level.
Olfa Turki, Wissem Dhahbi, Sabri Gueid, Sami Hmaied, Marouen Souaifi and Riadh Khalifa
young, high school, female athletes have been reported 16 following a warm-up with a 2% loading, which was not the case with a 6% loading. In another study, 17 a dynamic warm-up with a 5% loading was not advantageous for increasing lower-extremity power output in high school football players
Olfa Turki, Wissem Dhahbi, Johnny Padulo, Riadh Khalifa, Sana Ridène, Khaled Alamri, Mirjana Milić, Sabri Gueid and Karim Chamari
warm-up (NS) and a warm-up incorporating DS on subsequent COD performance (half T test) in young elite volleyball players. Methods Subjects A total of 16 players (age 16.88 [0.34] y, body mass 75.81 [5.41] kg, body height 1.91 [0.05] m, body mass index 20.84 [1.79] kg·m −2 , and body fat percentage 9
João Ribeiro, Luís Teixeira, Rui Lemos, Anderson S. Teixeira, Vitor Moreira, Pedro Silva and Fábio Y. Nakamura
tolerated by injured or underrecovered athletes (eg, feeling delayed onset muscle soreness effects). 11 The aim of this study was to compare the effects of squat + hip-thrust training performed at OPL versus PT on jump, sprint, and COD performances measured in young elite-level soccer players. It was
Javier Raya-González, Luis Suárez-Arrones, Archit Navandar, Carlos Balsalobre-Fernández and Eduardo Sáez de Villarreal
soccer career (established as 18.05 [6.69] y) in soccer players 4 has caused an annual increase in the number of injuries. 5 However, most epidemiological investigations have focused on professional 6 – 8 and semiprofessional senior soccer players, 9 with the studies on young soccer players being
Daniel Gould, Charles Gene Wilson, Suzan Tuffey and Marc Lochbaum
This article examines psychological stress in children’s sports by presenting results from a panel discussion held with four young athletes ranging in age from 11 to 16 years. The discussion focused on stress and its sources, consequences, and how to cope. Results validated existing research on youth sports stress by showing that most young athletes are not placed under excessive stress. Rather, certain children in specific situations experience high levels of competitive state anxiety. Consistent with previous research, the stress of sports competition was also found to be no more anxiety provoking than other childhood evaluative activities. Future research directions identified from the panel’s responses included the need to identify strategies for coping with stress and ways of teaching these to young athletes, as well as ways to educate parents and coaches on how to improve communication skills. Finally, based on the panel’s remarks, practical implications for facilitating the youth sport experience are discussed.
Aquatic experiences including structured instructional programs for young children have become extremely popular over the past two decades despite opposition and controversy. Surprisingly, this popularity and controversy have not given rise to extensive or sustained research efforts by exercise scientists or aquatic professionals. Most information available for assessing risks and benefits of aquatic experiences for young children must be gleaned from ancillary sources in medical and educational literature. This paper reviews important issues and questions in the medical, developmental, and pedagogical areas of early childhood aquatics. The need for basic and applied research efforts by teams of exercise scientists from physiologic, psychologic, medical, and aquatic backgrounds is apparent.
Dirk Pette and Dejan Škorjanc
We compared responses of the fast extensor digitorum longus (EDL) and tibialis anterior (TA) muscles in young (15-week) and aging (101-week) male Brown Norwegian rats to 50 days of chronic low-frequency stimulation (CLFS, 10 Hz, 10 hours/day). After 50 days of CLFS, the EDL muscles of the young (22-week) and aging (108-week) rats displayed similar increases in type IIA fibers, relative concentration of myosin heavy chain MHCIIa, elevations in mitochondrial citrate synthase and 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase activities, and similar decreases in glycolytic enzyme activities (glyceraldehydephosphate dehydrogenase, lactate dehydrogenase). TA muscle in young rats contained a few cytochrome c oxidase negative (COX−) type I fibers. Their number was ~2-fold elevated by CLFS. Conversely, aging muscle, which contained a slightly higher amount of COX− fibers than young TA muscle, responded to CLFS with a significant decrease in COX− fibers. The appearance of small COX-positive type I fibers in stimulated aging muscle indicated that regenerating type I fibers “diluted” the COX-deficient fiber population.
Peter S.W. Davies, Jian-Ying Feng, J. Anthony Crisp, Janice M.E. Day, Ann Laidlaw, Jidi Chen and Xiao-Peng Liu
The energy expenditure and hence energy requirements of 12 young Chinese gymnasts attending a specialized school in Beijing were assessed. Total energy expenditure was measured using the doubly labeled water technique and this, in conjunction with measures of basal metabolic rate (BMR), allows the calculation of a physical activity level (PAL). Mean PAL value for the gymnasts was 1.98, which is significantly different from published mean values found in nongymnast children of a similar age. This mean value is equivalent to very heavy levels of physical activity during the periods of training being undertaken. This is the first time that energy expenditure has been noninvasively measured in free-living young gymnasts. The data will be of use to sports scientists and nutritionists alike.