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Christina A. Geithner, Claire E. Molenaar, Tommy Henriksson, Anncristine Fjellman-Wiklund and Kajsa Gilenstam

published as part of the dissertation ( Henriksson, Vescovi, Fjellman-Wiklund, & Gilenstam, 2016 ) as it is the only one in which relative age effects and maturity status are reported. Entire teams were recruited for this study, therefore efforts to avoid any undue pressure to participate included providing

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Simon J. Roberts, Lynne M. Boddy, Stuart J. Fairclough and Gareth Stratton

The aims of this study were firstly to examine whether there was an observed relative age effect in the cardiorespiratory fitness scores of 9-10 and 11-12 year old children, and secondly whether any observed effect was maintained after controlling for somatic maturity. Cardiorespiratory fitness data from 11,404 children aged 9-10 years and 3,911 children aged 11-12 years were obtained from a large cross-sectional field-based fitness testing program. A one-way ANOVA revealed a statistically significant relative age effect (p < .01) existed in the 20mSRT scores across all the age groups. Furthermore, ANCOVA analyses identified a statistically significant relative age effect was maintained after controlling for somatic maturation (p < .05). From a public health perspective these results confirm the existence of relative age effects for the first time and consequently may hold implications for relatively younger children in the accurate assessment of their cardiorespiratory fitness scores.

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Jess C. Dixon, Laura Chittle and Sean Horton

The relative age effect (RAE) has become a well-studied consequence of organizations utilizing a cutoff date to establish age cohorts. Within this case study, students will explore and learn how to perform various statistical analyses (i.e., chi-square, effect sizes, standardized residuals) to determine whether the RAE exists among those who competed in the 2011 and 2012 Little League World Series (LLWS). Students will learn about the mission and history of Little League Baseball (LLB) and discuss potential changes and/or strategies that could be used by the organization to make the LLWS more inclusive. Furthermore, students can use the knowledge gained from this case study to critically analyze the current status of various other sport organizations to help develop potential strategies to ensure fairness and equality for all participating athletes.

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Tatiane Gorski, Thomas Rosser, Hans Hoppeler and Michael Vogt


To verify whether relative age effects (RAEs) occur among young male and female Swiss Alpine skiers of different age groups and performance levels. In addition, the efficacy of normalizing performance in physical tests to height and body mass to attenuate RAEs eventually present was tested.


The Swiss Ski Power Test consists of anthropometric measures and physical tests for coordination and speed, endurance, and strength and has been used since 2004 to evaluate 11- to 19-y-old Swiss competitive Alpine skiers. The authors analyzed the distribution of 6996 tests performed by 1438 male and 1031 female Alpine skiers between 2004 and 2011 according to the athletes’ respective relative age quartiles. Differences in anthropometric measures and performance in physical tests according to quartile were assessed, and the possibility of attenuating eventual RAEs on performance by normalization of results to height and body mass was tested.


RAEs were found among all female and male age groups, with no differences between age groups. While performance level did not affect RAE for male skiers, it influenced RAE among female skiers. RAEs also influenced results in all physical tests except upper-limb strength. Normalization of results to body mass attenuated most RAEs identified.


Small RAEs are present among young Swiss competitive Alpine skiers and should be taken into account in training and selection settings to prevent the waste of possible future talents. When ranking junior athletes according to their performance in physical tests, normalization of results to body mass decreases the bias caused by RAEs.

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David H. Fukuda

The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate relative age effects (RAEs) in elite youth judo athletes from different chronological age groups, between sexes, and across weight categories. Data from 1542 place winners of the cadet (under 17 y, 2009-2013) and junior judo world championships (under 20/21 y, 1990-2013) were separated by birth month into quarters (Q1, Q2, Q3, and Q4). The observed values were compared with expected annual age distributions using χ2 analyses, and odd ratios (OR) were used to evaluate effect sizes between quarters. The observed frequency of place winners was significantly different from the expected frequency for the age-group and sex comparisons and all body-mass groups (P < .05) with the exception of the extra-light categories (P = .572). When comparing Q1 with Q4 (OR, 95% confidence interval), small effect sizes were observed for cadets (1.72, 1.12-2.66), juniors (1.54, 1.23-1.94), males (1.75, 1.32-2.33), females (1.39, 1.03-1.87), and the light- (1.79, 1.21-2.64) and middle-weight (1.80, 1.20-2.70) categories. RAEs are apparent in cadet and junior judo athletes. Thus, coaches and administrators should consider the potential for physical and/or competitive advantages while adopting strategies that encourage long-term participation in youth judo athletes.

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Simon J. Roberts and Stuart J. Fairclough

The common practice of annually age grouping children in education, likely done under the assumption of similarly aged children sharing similar abilities and learner characteristics, may actually undermine equity and fairness in student assessments. This strategy has received criticism for (dis) advantaging those older children born closer to the “cut off” date for entry into an academic year and for promoting the existence of relative age effects (RAEs). This paper explores the possibility that RAEs may be prevalent in the end-of-year attainment levels of junior high school physical education (PE) students. The PE end-of-year attainment scores were collected from 582 students in grades 7, 8 and 9 (aged 11–14 years) in the United Kingdom (UK). The results from a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) indicated a significant main effect for month of birth (p = .001) and gender (p = .001). Follow up interviews with heads of PE (HoPE) revealed a lack of awareness of RAEs and inconsiderate assessment strategies, which deviated from the requirements of the formal curriculum. The implications of RAEs in school PE assessment and possible recommendations are discussed.

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Werner F. Helsen, Nikola Medic, Janet L. Starkes and Andrew M. Williams

. ( 2014 ). Variations in relative age effects in individual sports: Skiing, figure skating and gymnastics . European Journal of Sport Science, 14, S183 – S190 . PubMed ID: 24444205 doi:10.1080/17461391.2012.671369 Barnsley , R.H. , & Thompson , A.H. ( 1988 ). Birthdate and success in minor

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Jaak Jürimäe

, Fuchslocher J . Relative age effects in Swiss junior soccer and their relationship with playing position . Eur J Sport Sci . 2013 ; 13 : 356 – 63 . PubMed doi:10.1080/17461391.2011.635699 10.1080/17461391.2011.635699 23834540 10. Thomas JR , Nelson JK , Silverman SJ . Research Methods in

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Amanda J. Visek, Heather Mannix, Avinash Chandran, Sean D. Cleary, Karen A. McDonnell and Loretta DiPietro

. ( 2009 ). Influences of competition level, gender, player nationality, career stage, and playing position on relative age effects . Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 19, 720 – 730 . PubMed ID: 18627551 doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0838.2008.00838.x Smith , F.L. , & Smoll , R

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Ashley M. Duguay, Todd M. Loughead and James M. Cook

). Relative age effects: Implications for leadership development . International Journal of Sport and Society, 2 , 1 – 16 . doi:10.18848/2152-7857/CGP/v02i02/54068 10.18848/2152-7857/CGP/v02i02/54068 Duguay , A.M. , Loughead , T.M. , & Munroe-Chandler , K.J. ( 2016 ). The development