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Lindsay Shaw, Leonard Zaichkowsky and Vietta Wilson

The present paper evaluated the efficacy of a biofeedback/neurofeedback training program to create an optimal preperformance state to improve gymnasts’ balance beam performance in competition. Training to increase heart rate variability (HRV) and sensorimotor rhythm while inhibiting theta was provided to 11 Division I gymnasts in 10 15-min sessions. Results of this uncontrolled study indicated that competition scores and scores from an independently judged video assessment improved throughout the training, beta decreased from preto postassessment, and there were no changes in HRV, sensorimotor rhythm, or theta. The withdrawal of training resulted in a decline of competition scores.

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Lauren A. Burt, David A. Greene and Geraldine A. Naughton

High-impact activities have been shown to increase bone density more than low-impact or weight-supported sports ( 27 , 30 ). Gymnastics is a substantially high-impact sport, and among female gymnasts, higher bone density has been reported ( 4 ). Because gymnastics is an early specialization sport

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Alyssa C. Adams, Kelly B. Fleming and Patricia M. Tripp

competitive sport activity remains low (approximately 58%). 4 The following case highlights the diagnosis, initial management, surgical intervention, and postoperative recovery for a patient with bilateral hip dysplasia. Case Review Patient A 19-year-old Division I collegiate gymnast presented to the

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Andrzej Kochanowicz, Bartłomiej Niespodziński, Jan Mieszkowski, Stanisław Sawczyn, Paweł Cięszczyk and Kazimierz Kochanowicz

and requires further investigation. Similarly, there is still little information on the impact of explosive training on neuromuscular changes in the prepubertal period. Therefore, to understand the effect of explosive-type training in prepubertal gymnasts, it is important to examine how this training

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Nick Wadsworth

detailed overview of an applied consultancy experience with a 14-year-old gymnast. The client experienced a multitude of challenges simultaneously, and I relied heavily on reflective practice throughout the consultancy process to make sense of and learn from the variety of challenges presented. Context The

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Marta C. Erlandson, Shonah B. Runalls, Stefan A. Jackowski, Robert A. Faulkner and Adam D.G. Baxter-Jones

model for assessing the effects of weight-bearing physical activity on bone development ( 15 ). Young female gymnasts have consistently been shown to have greater bone mineral content (BMC) and areal bone mineral density (aBMD) than nongymnasts ( 23 , 32 , 35 , 45 ). Additionally, structural benefits to

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Thomas Heinen

The goal of this study was to investigate the visual spotting hypothesis in 10 experts and 10 apprentices as they perform back aerial somersaults from a standing position with no preparatory jumps (short flight duration condition) and after some preparatory jumps with a flight time of 1s (long flight duration condition). Differences in gaze behavior and kinematics were expected between experts and apprentices and between experimental conditions. Gaze behavior was measured using a portable and wireless eye-tracking system in combination with a movement-analysis system. Experts exhibited a smaller landing deviation from the middle of the trampoline bed than apprentices. Experts showed higher fixation ratios during the take-off and flight phase. Experts exhibited no blinks in any of the somersaults in both conditions, whereas apprentices showed significant blink ratios in both experimental conditions. The findings suggest that gymnasts can use visual spotting during the back aerial somersault, even when the time of flight is delimited. We conclude that knowledge about gaze–movement relationships may help coaches develop specific training programs in the learning process of the back aerial somersault.

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Nicole Gero, Jacque Cole, Jill Kanaley, Marjolein van der Meulen and Tamara Scerpella

This longitudinal study evaluates the role of impact activity in bone accrual in premenarcheal girls. Twenty-eight gymnasts and 20 controls underwent 1-year analysis; fifteen gymnasts and 8 controls underwent 2-year analysis. Bone mineral density (BMD) was measured yearly by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry. For the 1-year analysis, BMD accrual rates were greater in gymnasts than controls at the forearm only (p < .05). For the 2-year analysis, gains in BMD were 1.5 to 1.9 times greater at the forearm, total hip, and femoral neck for gymnasts (p < .05). These findings confirm the positive effect of impact activity on bone accrual in premenarcheal girls.

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Windee M. Weiss and Maureen R. Weiss

The purpose of this study was to examine correlates of attraction- and entrapment-based commitment among young competitive female gymnasts. Participants were 124 gymnasts (Levels 9, 10, and Elite) ranging in age from 10 to 18 years. Based on theory and research (Raedeke, 1997; Schmidt & Stein, 1991), commitment profiles were determined based on benefits, costs, enjoyment, personal investments, and attractive alternatives. Three profiles emerged when using cluster analysis. Attracted gymnasts were higher in enjoyment and benefits but lower in costs and attractive alternatives. Entrapped gymnasts were lower in enjoyment and benefits but higher in costs and attractive alternatives. Vulnerable gymnasts were moderately lower in enjoyment and benefits, average in costs, and moderately higher in attractive alternatives. These groups were significantly different on social support, social constraints, motivational orientation, and training behaviors. The three profiles were similar but not identical to Schmidt and Stein’s predicted types of commitment, with each type being further differentiated by social, motivational, and behavioral variables.

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Jessica H. Doughty and Heather A. Hausenblas

It is commonly believed that gymnasts are at risk for eating disorders. However, research examining whether gymnasts are a high-risk population for eating pathologies is equivocal. The purpose of our study was to examine disordered eating among Division I female gymnasts using a longitudinal design with validated eating disorder measures. Participants (n = 72) completed the Drive for Thinness, Body Dissatisfaction and Perfectionism subscales of the Eating Disorder Inventory-2 (Garner, 1991), and the Social Physique Anxiety Scale (Martin et al., 1997), twice during their competitive season (i.e., October and March). There were no significant time differences for the eating disorder subscales, indicating that gymnasts’ perfectionism, body dissatisfaction, and anorexic tendencies may be stable characteristics that do not change across a competitive season. Implications of these results and future research directions are discussed.