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A Brief Primer on Effect Sizes

Bruce Thompson

The milestones in the movement of the field away from emphasizing p values, and toward emphasizing effect size reporting, are reviewed. The primer also briefly introduces the effect size types and recommends a few effect size usage and interpretation guidelines that journals and authors should follow.

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Low Prevalence of A Priori Power Analyses in Motor Behavior Research

Brad McKay, Abbey Corson, Mary-Anne Vinh, Gianna Jeyarajan, Chitrini Tandon, Hugh Brooks, Julie Hubley, and Michael J. Carter

-negative rates of 10% or 5% more appropriate, but this consideration should be made thoughtfully (see Lakens, 2022b, for a discussion). Standardized effect sizes also have conventional benchmarks that researchers may rely on when designing studies. Recent metascience suggests doing so is likely to result in

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The N-Pact Factor, Replication, Power, and Quantitative Research in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly

Jeffrey Martin and Drew Martin

detect small to moderate effect sizes. The earlier suggestion, that research published in APAQ is based on small samples resulting in underpowered research, however, is a subjective assessment. Hence, to address this shortcoming, the first purpose of this research report was to examine the median

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Adherence and Attrition in Fall Prevention Exercise Programs for Community-Dwelling Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Oluwaseyi Osho, Oluwatoyosi Owoeye, and Susan Armijo-Olivo

, & Haines, 2013 ; Nyman & Victor, 2012 ; Simek, McPhate, & Haines 2012 ). To quantify the effectiveness of a FPEP, the effect size is particularly valuable; it allows relative comparison between the intervention and control groups in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) ( Robert, 2002 ). It is a simple way

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Responsiveness and Validity of Weight-Bearing Test for Measuring Loading Capacity in Patients With Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex Injury

Cigdem Ayhan Kuru, Ozgun Uysal, Nur Banu Karaca, Zeliha Akar, Egemen Ayhan, and Ilhami Kuru

by evaluating the change in a measure following a treatment. The change can be assessed using a repeated measures design, where patients are assessed before and after a treatment. Effect size statistics is used to analyze the magnitude of change in the measure, which has been widely recommended for

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Gender Differences and Inequality? A 20-Year Retrospective Analysis Based on 39,980 Students’ Perceptions of Physical Education in Sweden

Alexander Jansson, Gunilla Brun Sundblad, Suzanne Lundvall, Daniel Bjärsholm, and Johan R. Norberg

PE—such as swimming and outdoor life activities (see Engström, 2008 ; Säfvenbom et al., 2015 ). Second, few studies adopt a recommended methodical approach, namely, to analyze and report effect size (see Cohen, 1988 , 1990 ). The term effect size refers to a standardized value that provides

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But What Do the Numbers Really Tell Us?: Arbitrary Metrics and Effect Size Reporting in Sport Psychology Research

Mark B. Andersen, Penny McCullagh, and Gabriel J. Wilson

Many of the measurements used in sport psychology research are arbitrary metrics, and researchers often cannot make the jump from scores on paper-and-pencil tests to what those scores actually mean in terms of real-world behaviors. Effect sizes for behavioral data are often interpretable, but the meaning of a small, medium, or large effect for an arbitrary metric is elusive. We reviewed all the issues in the 2005 volumes of the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, The Sport Psychologist, and the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology to determine whether the arbitrary metrics used in sport psychology research were interpreted, or calibrated, against real-world variables. Of the 54 studies that used quantitative methods, 25 reported only paper-and-pencil arbitrary metrics with no connections to behavior or other real-world variables. Also, 44 of the 54 studies reported effect sizes, but only 7 studies, using both arbitrary and behavioral metrics, had calculated effect indicators and interpreted them in terms of real-world meaning.

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To What Extent Does Not Wearing Shoes Affect the Local Dynamic Stability of Walking?: Effect Size and Intrasession Repeatability

Philippe Terrier and Fabienne Reynard

Local dynamic stability (stability) quantifies how a system responds to small perturbations. Several experimental and clinical findings have highlighted the association between gait stability and fall risk. Walking without shoes is known to slightly modify gait parameters. Barefoot walking may cause unusual sensory feedback to individuals accustomed to shod walking, and this may affect stability. The objective was therefore to compare the stability of shod and barefoot walking in healthy individuals and to analyze the intrasession repeatability. Forty participants traversed a 70 m indoor corridor wearing normal shoes in one trial and walking barefoot in a second trial. Trunk accelerations were recorded with a 3D-accelerometer attached to the lower back. The stability was computed using the finite-time maximal Lyapunov exponent method. Absolute agreement between the forward and backward paths was estimated with the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Barefoot walking did not significantly modify the stability as compared with shod walking (average standardized effect size: +0.11). The intrasession repeatability was high (ICC: 0.73–0.81) and slightly higher in barefoot walking condition (ICC: 0.81–0.87). Therefore, it seems that barefoot walking can be used to evaluate stability without introducing a bias as compared with shod walking, and with a sufficient reliability.

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The Effects of Plyometric Training on Change-of-Direction Ability: A Meta-Analysis

Abbas Asadi, Hamid Arazi, Warren B. Young, and Eduardo Sáez de Villarreal


To show a clear picture about the possible variables of enhancements of change-of-direction (COD) ability using longitudinal plyometric-training (PT) studies and determine specific factors that influence the training effects.


A computerized search was performed, and 24 articles with a total of 46 effect sizes (ESs) in an experimental group and 25 ESs in a control group were reviewed to analyze the role of various factors on the impact of PT on COD performance.


The results showed that participants with good fitness levels obtained greater improvements in COD performance (P < .05), and basketball players gained more benefits of PT than other athletes. Also, men obtained COD results similar to those of women after PT. In relation to the variables of PT design, it appears that 7 wk (with 2 sessions/wk) using moderate intensity and 100 jumps per training session with a 72-h rest interval tends to improve COD ability. Performing PT with a combination of different types of plyometric exercises such as drop jumps + vertical jumps + standing long jumps is better than 1 form of exercise.


It is apparent that PT can be effective at improving COD ability. The loading parameters are essential for exercise professionals, coaches, and strength and conditioning professionals with regard to the most appropriate dose-response trends to optimize plyometric-induced COD-ability gains.

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Effect of Active Workstation on Energy Expenditure and Job Performance: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

Chunmei Cao, Yu Liu, Weimo Zhu, and Jiangjun Ma


Recently developed active workstation could become a potential means for worksite physical activity and wellness promotion. The aim of this review was to quantitatively examine the effectiveness of active workstation in energy expenditure and job performance.


The literature search was conducted in 6 databases (PubMed, SPORTDiscuss, Web of Science, ProQuest, ScienceDirect, and Scopuse) for articles published up to February 2014, from which a systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted.


The cumulative analysis for EE showed there was significant increase in EE using active workstation [mean effect size (MES): 1.47; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.22 to 1.72, P < .0001]. Results from job performance indicated 2 findings: (1) active workstation did not affect selective attention, processing speed, speech quality, reading comprehension, interpretation and accuracy of transcription; and (2) it could decrease the efficiency of typing speed (MES: –0.55; CI: –0.88 to –0.21, P < .001) and mouse clicking (MES: –1.10; CI: –1.29 to –0.92, P < .001).


Active workstation could significantly increase daily PA and be potentially useful in reducing workplace sedentariness. Although some parts of job performance were significantly lower, others were not. As a result there was little effect on real-life work productivity if we made a good arrangement of job tasks.