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Acute Carbohydrate Ingestion Affects Lactate Response in Highly Trained Swimmers

Melinda L. Millard-Stafford, Mary Beth Brown, and Teresa K. Snow

Purpose:

Effects of acute carbohydrate ingestion on blood lactate (BLa) response to graded exercise was examined in highly trained male and female swimmers.

Methods:

Twenty-three swimmers performed the United States Swimming Lactate Protocol, a graded interval test (5 × 200 on 5 min), following ingestion of carbohydrate sports drink (CHO) and placebo (PLA).

Results:

There was no difference in heart rate (P = .55), swim velocity (P = .95), or ratings of perceived exertion (P = .58) between beverages. There was a signifcant main effect for gender (P = .002) on BLa during all swim stages and recovery. In females, BLa was 27% to 50% higher for CHO during the first (P = .009) and second (P = .04) swim stages. Predicted BLa at selected swim velocity was higher (P = .048) for CHO versus PLA in females at 1.27 m·s−1 and higher (P < .02) for men at 1.4 m·s−1. Mean (±SD) BLa was significantly (P = .004) greater for CHO (2.7 ± 1.2) compared with PLA (2.0 ± 1.1 mmol·L−1) during the second test stage and when normalized relative to velocity (P = .004). Peak BLa after the final swim (9.6 ± 3.1 vs. 9.0 ± 3.2 mmol·L−1, P = .36) was not different between CHO and PLA.

Conclusions:

Acute CHO ingestion alters the BLa: swim velocity relationship during moderate intensity swims of an incremental swim test, particularly for females. Therefore, pretest beverage ingestion should be standardized during the administration of BLa testing to prevent potential erroneous interpretations regarding athlete’s training status.

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Using Multivariate Data Analysis to Project Performance in Biathletes and Cross-Country Skiers

Thomas W. Jones, Hampus P. Lindblom, Marko S. Laaksonen, and Kerry McGawley

Purpose: To determine whether competitive performance, as defined by International Biathlon Union (IBU) and International Ski Federation (FIS) points in biathlon and cross-country (XC) skiing, respectively, can be projected using a combination of anthropometric and physiological metrics. Shooting accuracy was also included in the biathlon models. Methods: Data were analyzed using multivariate methods from 45 (23 female and 22 male) biathletes and 202 (86 female and 116 male) XC skiers who were all members of senior national teams, national development teams, or ski-university or high school invite-only programs (age range: 16–36 y). Anthropometric and physiological characteristics were assessed via dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry and incremental roller-ski treadmill tests, respectively. Shooting accuracy was assessed via an outdoor standardized testing protocol. Results: Valid projective models were identified for female biathletes’ IBU points (R 2 = .80/Q 2 = .65) and female XC skiers’ FIS distance (R 2 = .81/Q 2 = .74) and sprint (R 2 = .81/Q 2 = .70) points. No valid models were identified for the men. The most important variables for the projection of IBU points were shooting accuracy, speeds at blood lactate concentrations of 4 and 2 mmol·L−1, peak aerobic power, and lean mass. The most important variables for the projection of FIS distance and sprint points were speeds at blood lactate concentrations of 4 and 2 mmol·L−1 and peak aerobic power. Conclusions: This study highlights the relative importance of specific anthropometric, physiological, and shooting-accuracy metrics in female biathletes and XC skiers. The data can help to identify the specific metrics that should be targeted when monitoring athletes’ progression and designing training plans.

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One-Repetition-Maximum Measures or Maximum Bar-Power Output: Which Is More Related to Sport Performance?

Irineu Loturco, Timothy Suchomel, Chris Bishop, Ronaldo Kobal, Lucas A. Pereira, and Michael McGuigan

performance measures in elite athletes from a range of sport disciplines; and (2) assess the sensitivity and specificity of the bar-power approach for athlete testing and monitoring. Methods Subjects Sixty-one elite athletes from 4 different sports (14 track and field sprinters and jumpers: 23.9 [5.7] y, 66

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Accuracy and Validity of Commercially Available Kayak Ergometers

Thiago Oliveira Borges, Nicola Bullock, David Aitken, and Aaron J. Coutts

Methods:

This study compared 3 commercially available ergometers for within- and between-brands difference to a first-principle calibration rig.

Results:

All ergometers underestimated true mean power, with errors of 27.6% ± 3.7%, 4.5% ± 3.5%, and 22.5% ± 1.9% for the KayakPro, WEBA, and Dansprint, respectively. Within-brand ergometer power differences ranged from 17 ± 9 to 22 ± 11 W for the KayakPro, 3 ± 4 to 4 ± 4 W for the WEBA, and 5 ± 3 to 5 ± 4 W for the Dansprint. The linear-regression analysis showed that most kayak ergometers have a stable coefficient of variation (0.9–1.7%) with a moderate effect size.

Conclusion:

Taken collectively, these findings show that different ergometers present inconsistent outcomes. Therefore, we suggest that athlete testing be conducted on the same ergometer brand, preferably the same ergometer. Optimally, that ergometer should be calibrated using a first-principle device before any athlete testing block.

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Maximal Aerobic Capacity in the Winter-Olympics Endurance Disciplines: Olympic-Medal Benchmarks for the Time Period 1990–2013

Espen Tønnessen, Thomas A. Haugen, Erlend Hem, Svein Leirstein, and Stephen Seiler

Purpose:

To generate updated Olympic-medal benchmarks for V̇O2max in winter endurance disciplines, examine possible differences in V̇O2max between medalists and nonmedalists, and calculate gender difference in V̇O2max based on a homogeneous subset of world-leading endurance athletes.

Methods:

The authors identified 111 athletes who participated in winter Olympic Games/World Championships in the period 1990 to 2013. All identified athletes tested V̇O2max at the Norwegian Olympic Training Center within ±1 y of their championship performance. Testing procedures were consistent throughout the entire period.

Results:

For medal-winning athletes, the following relative V̇O2max values (mean:95% confidence intervals) for men/women were observed (mL · min–1 · kg–1): 84:87-81/72:77-68 for cross-country distance skiing, 78:81-75/68:73-64 for cross-country sprint skiing, 81:84-78/67:73-61 for biathlon, and 77:80-75 for Nordic combined (men only). Similar benchmarks for absolute V̇O2max (L/min) in male/female athletes are 6.4:6.1-6.7/4.3:4.1-4.5 for cross-country distance skiers, 6.3:5.8-6.8/4.0:3.7-4.3 for cross-country sprint skiers, 6.2:5.7-6.4/4.0:3.7-4.3 for biathletes, and 5.3:5.0-5.5 for Nordic combined (men only). The difference in relative V̇O2max between medalists and nonmedalists was large for Nordic combined, moderate for cross-country distance and biathlon, and small/trivial for the other disciplines. Corresponding differences in absolute V̇O2max were small/trivial for all disciplines. Male cross-country medalists achieve 15% higher relative V̇O2max than corresponding women.

Conclusions:

This study provides updated benchmark V̇O2max values for Olympic-medal-level performance in winter endurance disciplines and can serve as a guideline of the requirements for future elite athletes.

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The 6-m Timed Hop Is Not a Suitable Clinical Assessment Tool for Use Following Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction

Paul J. Read, Theodosia Palli, and Jon L. Oliver

Context: Single-leg hop tests are used to assess functional performance following anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction. Recording 6-m timed hop scores using a stopwatch increases the potential for misclassification of patient status due to the number of error sources present. Objective: To examine the consistency of pass/fail (>90% limb symmetry index [LSI]) decisions in athletes tested at discharge following ACL reconstruction during the 6-m timed hop and the agreement between different human raters using a stopwatch and an electronic timing system. Setting: Clinic, rehabilitation. Participants: A total of 20 professional soccer players (age 24.6 [4.2] y; height 175.3 [10.2] cm; mass 73.6 [14.5] kg; 36 [10.5] wk following ACL reconstruction) volunteered to take part in this study. Main Outcome Measures: Two individual raters recorded each trial of the 6-m timed hop test on each limb with a stopwatch and an electronic timing system acted as the criterion measure. LSI scores were also computed with a pass score >90% LSI. Results: No significant differences were observed between limbs for any scoring method (P > .05). Mean differences indicated the electronic timing system was slower than both human raters (P < .05). Five participants failed the test (<90% LSI) but on each occasion this was only recorded by one method of rating. Kappa statistics showed no agreement in LSI scores across all 3 methods of scoring (κ = −.13) and no agreement when comparing the light gates to individual raters and rater 1 versus 2 (κ < 0). 95% limits of agreement in LSI scores recorded values of approximately ±20%. Conclusions: The 6-m timed hop test recorded using a stopwatch is not a valid measure to make clinical decisions following ACL reconstruction. Systematic bias between methods also suggests that a stopwatch and electronic timing system cannot be used interchangeably.

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Combining Research With “Servicing” to Enhance Sport Performance

Shona L. Halson, Alan G. Hahn, and Aaron J. Coutts

following the scientific method and performing research, even though this is not widely recognized in the sport industry. One important aspect of the evolution of monitoring elite athletes is the transition of athlete testing from the laboratory to the field. Laboratory testing is often considered to have

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Innovating Together: Collaborating to Impact Performance

Katie Slattery, Stephen Crowcroft, and Aaron J. Coutts

, optimal learning strategies), while coaches and athletes test the intervention’s effectiveness in the real world. Undoubtedly, coaches and athletes benefit from the work of researchers, but there are great benefits to be achieved by working together to bridge the gap from research to practice. We have

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To Optimize? First, Empathize

Martin Buchheit and Sian V. Allen

athletes’ armory, factors outside the daily training environment that influence their behavior, and idiosyncrasies of their personalities. As scientists and applied practitioners, we are conditioned to start designing our research studies, training programs, or athlete testing strategies by writing a plan

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Influence of the Reactive Strength Index Modified on Force– and Power–Time Curves

John J. McMahon, Paul A. Jones, Timothy J. Suchomel, Jason Lake, and Paul Comfort

are larger than the moderate correlation coefficients reported for the male college athletes’ data by Suchomel et al 4 but agreed with peak concentric power ( r  = .47) showing a larger association with RSImod than peak concentric force ( r  = .37). The athletes tested by Suchomel et al 4 achieved a