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Debbie Van Biesen, Jennifer Mactavish, Janne Kerremans and Yves C. Vanlandewijck

Evidence-based classification systems in Paralympic sport require knowledge of the underlying effect of impairment in a specific sport. This study investigated the relationship between cognition and tactical proficiency in 88 well-trained table tennis players with intellectual disability (ID; 29 women, 59 men, M ± SD IQ 59.9 ± 9.6). Data were collected at 3 competitions sanctioned by the International Federation for Para-Athletes with Intellectual Disabilities (INAS). A generic cognitive test consisting of 8 neuropsychological subtests was used to assess cognitive abilities relevant to sport (reaction time, processing speed, and decision speed; spatial visualization; fluid reasoning; memory; executive functioning; and visual processing). The backward stepwise-regression analysis model revealed that 18% of the variance in tactical proficiency was attributed to spatial visualization and simple reaction time. Applications of these findings resulted in an evidence-based classification system that led to the reinclusion of athletes with ID in Paralympic table tennis and provide the basis for future research in this important area.

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Laura Pomportes, Jeanick Brisswalter, Arnaud Hays and Karen Davranche

improves cognitive performance, whereas heavy or prolonged exercise could lead to a decrease. 2 Recent studies have indicated that nutritional supplements could help limit central fatigue 3 possibly related to brain neurotransmitters disturbances, 4 and maintain cognitive abilities during exercise. 5

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Paul M. Wright, Lauriece L. Zittel, Tawanda Gipson and Crystal Williams

, researchers have linked physical activity to improved cognition ( Tomporowski, Davis, Miller, & Naglieri, 2008 ; Tomporowski, Lambourne, & Okumura, 2011 ) and specific cognitive abilities associated with the prefrontal, frontal, and parietal areas of the brain ( Botvinick, Nystrom, Fissell, Carter & Cohen

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Kathryn E. Phillips and Will G. Hopkins

cognitive abilities of players to become more evident. These cognitive changes are likely connected to the phenomenon of choking, where, given their typical level of expertise, individuals perform more poorly than expected in high-pressure situations. 26 In this way, tournament importance appears to be

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Jacinta M. Saldaris, Grant J. Landers and Brendan S. Lay

function simplicity. The cMSIT may require a simpler motor response in comparison with the other 2 cognitive tasks used in the study. Alternatively, as executive control is comprised by many cognitive abilities, each may be affected by environmental and physiological stressors differently, while they may

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Athanasios Papaioannou, Dimitrios Milosis and Christos Gotzaridis

. For example, Galen (180 A.D.) explained why “ball games train cognitive abilities and skills such as attention, planning and critical thinking and simultaneously provide pleasure to improve health and excel in life” (as cited in Miller, 2012 , p. 122). Reinvesting on these forgotten ideas using

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Chien-Chih Chou, Kuan-Chou Chen, Mei-Yao Huang, Hsin-Yu Tu and Chung-Ju Huang

. ( 2013 ). The influence of exercise on cognitive abilities . Comprehensive Physiology, 3, 403 – 428 . PubMed ID: 23720292 doi: 10.1002/cphy.c110063 Graham , G. , Holt/Hale , S.A. , & Parker , M. ( 2012 ). Children moving: A reflective approach to teaching physical education with movement

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Blake Bennett

training contexts (e.g., perceptual learning-inspired training programs and virtual reality simulations) that provide augmented sporting settings leading to possible enhancements in sports-specific visual and cognitive abilities and competitive advantages. Gréhaigne, Caty, and Godbout ( 2010 ) posited that

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Romain Meeusen and Lieselot Decroix

the cognitive abilities are tested in standardized situations or computerized tests, and therefore the results on these tests are not always transferrable to “real-life” sports situations. Several studies used more “sport-specific” tests. It seems not always easy to separate “cognition” from “sport

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Iva Obrusnikova, Haley M. Novak and Albert R. Cavalier

baseline phase of the study. Demographic information about each participant was obtained through interviews with the participants and their parents. Cognitive abilities were tested with the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence-Second Edition (WASI-II; Wechsler, 2011 ) by a certified school