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Shaun D’Auria and Tim Gabbett

Purpose:

The purpose of this study was to investigate the physiological demands of field players in international women’s water polo match play.

Methods:

Video footage was collected at the 13th FINA Women’s Water Polo World Cup in Perth in 2002. Video recordings were analyzed using a simple hand-based notation system to record predefined activity durations, frequencies, and corresponding subjective intensities.

Results:

Average exercise bout duration was 7.4 ± 2.5 s and exercise to rest ratio within play 1:1.6 ± 0.6. The average pattern of exercise was represented by 64.0 ± 15.3% swimming, 13.1 ± 9.2% contested swimming, 14.0 ± 11.6% wrestling, and 8.9 ± 7.1% holding position. Significant differences existed between outside and center players for percentage time swimming (67.5 ± 14.0% vs 60.2 ± 13.3%, P = .002) and wrestling (9.9 ± 9.3% vs 18.4 ± 11.1%, P = .000). A significant difference was found in the number (P = .017) and duration (P = .010) of high-intensity activity (HIA) bouts performed each quarter for outside (1.8 ± 2.2 bouts, 7.0 ± 3.4 s) and center players (1.2 ± 1.5 bouts, 5.2 ± 3.4 s). Positional differences in HIA were the result of a significant difference (P = .000) in the number of maximal/near maximal swims (outside 1.2 ± 1.5 and center 0.5 ± 0.9 per quarter).

Conclusions:

This study characterizes international women’s water polo match play as a highly intermittent activity. Swimming, particularly high intensity, has greater significance to outside players, whereas wrestling has greater significance to center players.

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Josh L. Secomb, Jeremy M. Sheppard and Ben J. Dascombe

Purpose:

To provide a descriptive and quantitative time–motion analysis of surfing training with the use of global positioning system (GPS) and heart-rate (HR) technology.

Methods:

Fifteen male surfing athletes (22.1 ± 3.9 y, 175.4 ± 6.4 cm, 72.5 ± 7.7 kg) performed a 2-h surfing training session, wearing both a GPS unit and an HR monitor. An individual digital video recording was taken of the entire surfing duration. Repeated-measures ANOVAs were used to determine any effects of time on the physical and physiological measures.

Results:

Participants covered 6293.2 ± 1826.1 m during the 2-h surfing training session and recorded measures of average speed, HRaverage, and HRpeak as 52.4 ± 15.2 m/min, 128 ± 13 beats/min, and 171 ± 12 beats/min, respectively. Furthermore, the relative mean times spent performing paddling, sprint paddling to catch waves, stationary, wave riding, and recovery of the surfboard were 42.6% ± 9.9%, 4.1% ± 1.2%, 52.8% ± 12.4%, 2.5% ± 1.9%, and 2.1% ± 1.7%, respectively.

Conclusion:

The results demonstrate that a 2-h surfing training session is performed at a lower intensity than competitive heats. This is likely due to the onset of fatigue and a pacing strategy used by participants. Furthermore, surfing training sessions do not appear to appropriately condition surfers for competitive events. As a result, coaches working with surfing athletes should consider altering training sessions to incorporate repeated-effort sprint paddling to more effectively physically prepare surfers for competitive events.

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Ric Lovell and Grant Abt

Purpose:

To report the intensity distribution of Premier League soccer players’ external loads during match play, according to recognized physiological thresholds. The authors also present a case in which individualized speed thresholds changed the interpretation of time–motion data.

Method:

Eight outfield players performed an incremental treadmill test to exhaustion to determine the running speeds associated with their ventilatory thresholds. The running speeds were then used to individualize time–motion data collected in 5 competitive fixtures and compared with commonly applied arbitrary speed zones.

Results:

Of the total distance covered, 26%, 57%, and 17% were performed at low, moderate, and high intensity, respectively. Individualized time– motion data identified a 41% difference in the high-intensity distance covered between 2 players of the same positional role, whereas the player-independent approach yielded negligible (5–7%) differences in total and high-speed distances covered.

Conclusions:

The authors recommend that individualized speed thresholds be applied to time–motion-analysis data in synergy with the traditional arbitrary approach.

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Simon Roberts, Grant Trewartha and Keith Stokes

Purpose:

To assess the validity of a digitizing time–motion-analysis method for field-based sports and compare this with a notational-analysis method using rugby-union match play.

Method:

Five calibrated video cameras were located around a rugby pitch, and 1 subject completed prescribed movements within each camera’s view. Running speeds were measured using photocell timing gates. Two experienced operators digitized video data (operator 1 on 2 occasions) to allow 2-dimensional reconstruction of the prescribed movements.

Results:

Accuracy for total distance calculated was within 2.1% of the measured distance. For intraoperator and interoperator reliability, calculated distances were within 0.5% and 0.9%, respectively. Calculated speed was within 8.0% of measured photocell speed with intraoperator and interoperator reliability of 3.4% and 6.0%, respectively. For the method comparison, two 20-minute periods of rugby match play were analyzed for 5 players using the digitizing method and a notational time–motion method. For the 20-minute periods, overall mean absolute differences between methods for percentage time spent and distances covered performing different activities were 3.5% and 198.1 ± 138.1 m, respectively. Total number of changes in activity per 20 minutes were 184 ± 24 versus 458 ± 48, and work-to-rest ratios, 10.0%:90.0% and 7.3%:92.7% for notational and digitizing methods, respectively.

Conclusion:

The digitizing method is accurate and reliable for gaining detailed information on work profiles of field-sport participants and provides applied researchers richer data output than the conventional notational method.

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Colin Higgs

Wheelchair racquetball players in the A and B divisions of the 1989 Canadian Racquetball Championships were videotaped and their performances were analyzed. The results indicated that the athletes had an exercise-to-pause ratio of 1:1.5 at the A level and 1:2.3 at the B level. Rallies were slightly longer at the higher level, with substantially longer pause periods at the B level. There was a higher percentage of longer rallies at the A level, although both divisions of play had comparable percentages of forehand and backhand shots. A-level players demonstrated greater distances covered per rally, greater wheelchair speed, and a higher degree of wheelchair maneuverability measured by the number and magnitude of directional changes. In particular, A-level players showed a greater tendency to use small directional corrections, particularly turns to the right of less than 45 °. It is suggested that this action allowed a less restricted backswing for powerful forehand shots.

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Teresa Alentejano, Dru Marshall and Gordon Bell

Purpose:

To determine the total amount and relative time periods of face immersion (FI) in a synchronized swimming solo routine and the relationship between FI, distance covered, and the technical-merit score of the 11 top Canadian soloists at a synchronized swimming national championship (mean age 20 ± 1.8 y, height 173.3 ± 4.1 cm, and body mass 58.3 ± 4 kg).

Methods:

Videotape and timing of solo performances combined with manual tracking of pool patterns.

Results:

Analysis of performance revealed that an average of 18 FI periods, mean of 6.8 s, were performed for an average total time of 133.7 ± 27.1 s (range 102.2 to 199.8 s). The average longest FI time period was 25.45 ± 6.2 s (range 18.18 to 38.72 s), and most (10/11) of these were in the first third of the solo. The mean total horizontal distance covered was 57.61 ± 6.84 m (range 48.61 to 68.2 m), and the total horizontal distance covered relative to time was 0.276 ± 0.034 m/s (range 0.235 to 0.340 m/s). No significant relationships were found between any of the FI periods and the distance covered or between the technical-merit score and FI periods. Each solo contained 6 to 8 underwater sequences, none of which were longer than 40 seconds, the cutoff deemed dangerous by FINA (Fédération Internationale de Natation).

Conclusion:

This study shows that the times underwater for solos in Canada are within safety limits recommended by FINA and that judging in Canada is not related to underwater periods of swimming.

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Daniel W.T. Wundersitz, Paul B. Gastin, Samuel J. Robertson and Kevin J. Netto

Context:

Accelerometer peak impact accelerations are being used to measure player physical demands in contact sports. However, their accuracy to do so has not been ascertained.

Purpose:

To compare peak-impact-acceleration data from an accelerometer contained in a wearable tracking device with a 3-dimensional motion-analysis (MA) system during tackling and bumping.

Methods:

Twenty-five semielite rugby athletes wore a tracking device containing a 100-Hz triaxial accelerometer (MinimaxX S4, Catapult Innovations, Australia). A single retroreflective marker was attached to the device, with its position recorded by a 12-camera MA system during 3 physical-collision tasks (tackle bag, bump pad, and tackle drill; N = 625). The accuracy, effect size, agreement, precision, and relative errors for each comparison were obtained as measures of accelerometer validity.

Results:

Physical-collision peak impact accelerations recorded by the accelerometer overestimated (mean bias 0.60 g) those recorded by the MA system (P < .01). Filtering the raw data at a 20-Hz cutoff improved the accelerometer’s relationship with MA data (mean bias 0.01 g; P > .05). When considering the data in 9 magnitude bands, the strongest relationship with the MA system was found in the 3.0-g or less band, and the precision of the accelerometer tended to reduce as the magnitude of impact acceleration increased. Of the 3 movements performed, the tackle-bag task displayed the greatest validity with MA.

Conclusions:

The findings indicate that the MinimaxX S4 accelerometer can accurately measure physical-collision peak impact accelerations when data are filtered at a 20-Hz cutoff frequency. As a result, accelerometers may be useful to measure physical collisions in contact sports.

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Aaron T. Scanlan, Ben J. Dascombe, Andrew P. Kidcaff, Jessica L. Peucker and Vincent J. Dalbo

Purpose:

To compare game activity demands between female and male semiprofessional basketball players.

Methods:

Female (n = 12) and male (n = 12) semiprofessional basketball players were monitored across 3 competitive games. Time–motion-analysis procedures quantified player activity into predefined movement categories across backcourt (BC) and frontcourt (FC) positions. Activity frequencies, durations, and distances were calculated relative to live playing time (min). Work:rest ratios were also calculated using the video data. Game activity was compared between genders for each playing position and all players.

Results:

Female players performed at greater running work-rates than male players (45.7 ± 1.4 vs. 42.1 ± 1.7 m/min, P = .05), while male players performed more dribbling than female players (2.5 ± 0.3 vs. 3.0 ± 0.2 s/min; 8.4 ± 0.3 vs. 9.7 ± 0.7 m/min, P = .05). Positional analyses revealed that female BC players performed more low-intensity shuffling (P = .04) and jumping (P = .05), as well as longer (P = .04) jogging durations, than male BC players. Female FC players executed more upper-body activity (P = .03) and larger work:rest ratios (P < .001) than male FC players. No significant gender differences were observed in the overall intermittent demands, distance traveled, high-intensity shuffling activity, and sprinting requirements during game play.

Conclusions:

These findings indicate that gender-specific running and dribbling differences might exist in semiprofessional basketball. Furthermore, position-specific variations between female and male basketball players should be considered. These data may prove useful in the development of gender-specific conditioning plans relative to playing position in basketball.

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Helmi Chaabène, Emerson Franchini, Bianca Miarka, Mohamed Amin Selmi, Bessem Mkaouer and Karim Chamari

Purpose:

The aim of this study was to measure and compare physiological and time–motion variables during karate fighting and to assess eventual differences between winners and defeated elite karatekas in an ecologically valid environment.

Methods:

Fourteen elite male karatekas who regularly participated in national and international events took part in a national-level competition.

Results:

There were no significant differences between winners and defeated karatekas regarding all the studied variables. Karatekas used more upper-limb (76.19%) than lower-limb techniques (23.80%). The kisami-zuki represented the most frequent technique, with 29.1% of all used techniques. The duration of each fighting activity ranged from <1 s to 5 s, with 83.8% ± 12.0% of the actions lasting less than 2 s. Karatekas executed 17 ± 7 high-intensity actions per fight, which corresponded to ~6 high-intensity actions per min. Action-to-rest ratio was about 1:1.5, and high-intensityaction- to-rest ratio was ~1:10. The mean blood lactate response at 3 min postcombat (Lapost) elicited during karate fighting was 11.18 ± 2.21 mmol/L (difference between Lapre and Lapost = 10.01 ± 1.81 mmol/L). Mean heart rate (HR) was 177 ± 14 beats/min (91% ± 5% of HRpeak). Karatekas spent 65% of the time exercising at HR >90% of the individual HRpeak.

Conclusion:

Karatekas predominantly use upper-limb karate techniques. Karate’s nature is intermittent, with fighting activities representing ~6% of total combat’s duration and ~84% of actions lasting less than 2 s, with ~21-s mean time interval in between. Kumite combat sessions induced high La and near-maximal cardiovascular strain. Other key success factors should be investigated to properly discriminate winners and defeated athletes.

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Karin Fischer-Sonderegger, Wolfgang Taube, Martin Rumo and Markus Tschopp

R , Thomas K . Time-motion analysis of acceleration demands of 4v4 small-sided soccer games played on different pitch sizes . Hum Mov Sci . 2014 ; 33 : 25 – 32 . PubMed ID: 24576705 doi:10.1016/j.humov.2013.12.002 10.1016/j.humov.2013.12.002 24576705 15. Sonderegger K , Tschopp M , Taube