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Amber D. Mosewich, Catherine M. Sabiston, Kent C. Kowalski, Patrick Gaudreau and Peter R.E. Crocker

Women athletes encounter many potentially stressful situations in competitive sport, such as body dissatisfaction, injury, bullying, eating disorders, coach conflicts, poor performance and performance plateau, self-criticism, and social comparisons, that are often accompanied by negative self

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Irena Auersperger, Bojan Knap, Ales Jerin, Rok Blagus, Mitja Lainscak, Milan Skitek and Branko Skof

Exercise-associated iron deficiency is a common disorder in endurance athletes. The authors investigated the effects of long-term endurance exercise on hepcidin concentrations, inflammatory parameters, and iron status in moderately trained female long-distance runners. Eighteen runners were assigned to either an interval- or a continuous-training exercise group. The physical training consisted of two 3-week progressive overload periods, each followed by a week’s recovery, and concluded with a 10- or 21-km competitive run. Samples were taken 6 times during the 8-wk training program, first at baseline (BPre), then after the first and second 3-wk training loads (TPost1, TPost2), after each recovery week (Recovery1 and Recovery2), and poststudy (BPost). Soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR) concentrations were increased in Recovery2 and BPost compared with BPre (p = .02), hemoglobin decreased in TPost1 and TPost2 (p < .001), and red blood cells decreased in TPost2 (p = .01). Hepcidin decreased with time in TPost1 and in BPost compared with BPre (p < .001) and increased in TPost2 compared with TPost1 (p < .001). No differences over time were found for high-sensitivity C-reactive protein. The main findings of the current study indicate that serum hepcidin and sTfR were affected after 8 weeks of endurance running in women. No positive relation was found with inflammation.

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Justin J. Merrigan, James J. Tufano, Jonathan M. Oliver, Jason B. White, Jennifer B. Fields and Margaret T. Jones

Purpose: To examine rest redistribution (RR) effects on back squat kinetics and kinematics in resistance-trained women. Methods: Twelve women from strength and college sports (5.0 [2.2] y training history) participated in the randomized crossover design study with 72 hours between sessions (3 total). Participants completed 4 sets of 10 repetitions using traditional sets (120-s interset rest) and RR (30-s intraset rest in the middle of each set; 90-s interset rest) with 70% of their 1-repetition maximum. Kinetics and kinematics were sampled via force plate and 4 linear position transducers. The greatest value of repetitions 1 to 3 (peak repetition) was used to calculate percentage loss, [(repetition 10–peak repetition)/(peak repetition) × 100], and maintenance, {100–[(set mean–peak repetition)/(peak repetition)] × 100}, of velocity and power for each set. Repeated-measures analysis of variance was used for analyses (P < .05). Results: Mean and peak force did not differ between conditions. A condition × repetition interaction existed for peak power (P = .049) but not for peak velocity (P = .110). Peak power was greater in repetitions 7 to 9 (P < .05; d = 1.12–1.27) during RR. The percentage loss of velocity (95% confidence interval, –0.22% to –7.22%; P = .039) and power (95% confidence interval, –1.53% to –7.87%; P = .008) were reduced in RR. Mean velocity maintenance of sets 3 (P = .036; d = 1.90) and 4 (P = .015; d = 2.30) and mean power maintenance of set 4 (P = .006; d = 2.65) were greater in RR. Conclusion: By redistributing a portion of long interset rest into the middle of a set, velocity and power were better maintained. Therefore, redistributing rest may be beneficial for reducing fatigue in resistance-trained women.

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John Kerr

first that applied Kerr’s ( 1999 , 2005 ) reversal-theory-based approach to physical aggression in sport to a sample of women athletes. Reversal theory ( Apter, 1997 , 2001 ) provides a structural framework for categorizing and explaining motives for different types of aggression. The approach had

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Meghan S. Ingstrup, Amber D. Mosewich and Nicholas L. Holt

The purpose of this study was to explore factors that contributed to the development of self-compassion among highly self-compassionate women varsity athletes. More specifically, the research question was: how did women varsity athletes with high self-compassion perceive they became self-compassionate? To purposefully sample participants, 114 women varsity athletes completed the Self-Compassion Scale (Neff, 2003b). Ten athletes with high self-compassion scores then participated in individual interviews and a follow-up second interview. Data were analyzed using interpretive phenomenological analysis (Smith & Osborn, 2003). Analysis produced three main themes that contributed to the development of self-compassion: (a) role of parents (seeking and receiving help from parents, parents teaching self-kindness, parents putting experiences in perspective); (b) gaining self-awareness; and (c) learning from others (peers, siblings, coaches, sport psychologists). These findings provide insights into the ways in which self-compassion can be learned and taught, and have implications for practitioners who work with women athletes.

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Trisha Leahy and Rachel Harrigan

Narrative therapy is a form of therapeutic intervention underpinned by a philosophy of language proposing that meaning is socially constructed through language. Power relations and social and personal contexts are understood as central to the construction of meaning. Narrative therapy represents an approach to therapeutic practice that assumes that people experience problems in their lives when the dominant stories, which they or others have constructed of their lives, do not sufficiently represent their lived experience. In this article we provide an exposition of narrative therapy, its philosophical influences and key processes. We demonstrate key tenets in action via a psychoeducational intervention attempting to facilitate positive body image with a team of 15 elite young women athletes. Anonymous, written, evaluative feedback of the seven-session program suggests a generally positive outcome. Narrative therapy can be a useful addition to the repertoire of clinical skills of sport psychologists.

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Ross Tucker and Malcolm Collins

The division of athletes into male and female categories for competition is a widely accepted practice and is ordinarily straightforward, requiring no intervention from authorities. However, for reasons ranging from deliberate cheating to complex medical conditions resulting in ambiguous development of sex organs, the controversy of sex verification in athletic events has existed for 70 years. Testing procedures, initially implemented to prevent cheating by men masquerading as women, have produced humiliating outcomes for women athletes who were often for the first time confronted with the possibility that they have one of the disorders of sex development. Sporting authorities have and continue to formulate position stands for the management of such cases. An important missing component in this debate is the sound scientific evidence to determine (a) whether a performance advantage actually exists and (b) how large it might be. The division of competition into separate categories and the large difference in sporting performance between male and female necessitate that sport-governing bodies define the boundaries between the sexes in a just and fair manner for all participating athletes. This review will therefore provide the historical context of the debate and aim to discuss relevant physiological and performance aspects of the sex verification process.

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Iñigo Mujika and Ritva S. Taipale

, 22 women. As I look back on my career in sport physiology, I realize that I have often had the opportunity to work with elite women athletes. Indeed, my very first scientific article as a PhD student reported, “The subjects of this study were 18 national and international level swimmers, 10 males and

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Mathew Hillier, Louise Sutton, Lewis James, Dara Mojtahedi, Nicola Keay and Karen Hind

weight in the 24 hr before weigh-in. One third ( n  = 9) of women athletes reported missing three or more consecutive menstrual cycles within the last 12 months. To determine whether sex or competition level effected reported weight lost, controlling for age, %total weight loss, %weight lost in the final

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Trevor Cote, Amy Baltzell and Robert Diehl

beneficial for future MMTS programs. Likewise, Ferguson, Kowalski, Mack, and Sabiston ( 2014 ) substantiated the value of self-compassion as they found that women athletes’ perceived self-compassion may increase positivity, perseverance, and responsibility during emotionally difficult sport situations