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Intra and Interzone Differences of Attack and Counterattack Efficiency in Elite Male Volleyball

Abstract

The primary goal of this study was to identify and explain differences in a volleyball set between winning and defeated teams, based on frequency and efficiency of the attack and counterattack, both overall and from particular zones of the volleyball court. Research was conducted on a randomly chosen sample of 206 sets played in 55 matches of the Men's Champions League. A total of 10555 spikes in the attack and counterattack from various zones of the volleyball court were analyzed. Between-subjects 2×5 factorial ANOVA (Outcome×Zone) was used to identify significant differences between the set outcome and zones or their interaction for both attack and counterattack efficiency. Significant differences were found in the efficiency of spikes in attacks and counterattacks from various zones of the volleyball court and between winning and losing teams. Post-hoc analysis of interaction effects also revealed significant differences. The obtained results substantiate the importance of spiking, both in the attack and counterattack, for winning a volleyball set, and indicate the specific values of spiking in the attack and counterattack from various zones, for both winning and defeated teams. The results of this study can be useful for coaches, in evaluation of player's performance in the match, in planning and programming the training process as well as in the technical and tactical preparation of the team for the tournament.

Open access
Management of immune-related adverse events in patients treated with immune checkpoint inhibitors– Rheumatology point of view

Abstract

The development of immunotherapy has revolutionized the cancer treatment in the recent years. Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICPis) such as anti-cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated antigen 4 (anti-CTLA-4) and anti-programmed cell death protein (anti-PD1) and its ligand (anti-PDL1) have become part of the standard treatment of various malignancies. Immune-related adverse events (irAEs) were common in patients treated with ICPis. Rheumatologists should be aware of the upcoming challenges in the management of irAEs in a patient receiving treatment with ICPis.

Open access
Maximizing the Functional Performance Outcomes of Patients Undergoing Rehabilitation by Maximizing their Overall Health and Wellbeing

Abstract

To maximize the performance of an athlete, a team of experts work together to ensure each athlete achieves the maximal benefit from their prescribed exercise conditioning programs. In addition to the exercise specialists, the athlete’s team frequently includes psychologists (who address performance anxiety, stress, and depression), counselors (who address smoking cessation, reduction or elimination of alcohol consumption if necessary, weight optimization, and optimal sleep), and nutritionists (who address optimal nutrition and body mass attributes). Such a collaborative approach has become standard practice for athletes aiming to excel in their sports. Despite unequivocal and compelling evidence, this paradigm has only weakly been transferred to the needs of patients participating in rehabilitation programs. These individuals, like the athlete, also need to achieve their highest level of functional performance and recovery for carrying out their activities of daily living, managing the needs of their families, and often returning to work. This article reviews the evidence-based literature and the implications of this multifaceted approach in rehabilitation programs. The augmented benefits to exercise training and conditioning (prescriptive activity/exercise and less sitting) along with their ‘effect sizes’ are described in the rehabilitation context, in conjunction with smoking cessation, reduced harmful alcohol consumption, optimal nutrition, optimal body mass, manageable stress, and optimal sleep. These factors can be viewed as physical performance enhancers both in individuals participating in rehabilitation whose aim is maximal performance and recovery and in athletes aiming for maximal performance in their sports. Thus, without targeted attention to these lifestyle factors, rehabilitation outcomes cannot be maximized. The evidence presented in this article has implications for health professionals including physical therapists and others who are practicing in rehabilitation settings and those working with individuals in need in the community.

Open access
The mediation effect of Perceived Social Support and Perceived Stress on the relationship between Emotional Intelligence and Psychological Wellbeing in Male Athletes

Abstract

This study aimed to examine the relationship between emotional intelligence (EI) and psychological wellbeing in a three-month follow-up study of male athletes. In addition, we examined the mediating role of perceived social support and perceived stress on the relationship between EI and psychological wellbeing. The sample included 398 male athletes who completed measures of emotional intelligence (Schutte Self-Report Inventory), psychological wellbeing (Ryff Psychological Wellbeing Scale; SSRI), perceived social support (Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support), and perceived stress (Perceived Stress Scale–10). Results from structural equation modelling procedures identified that perceived social support and perceived stress partially mediated the association between EI and psychological wellbeing. The sequential mediation effects of perceived social support–perceived stress on the relations between EI and wellbeing were confirmed. Finally, limitations and recommendations for future research were considered

Open access
Moral Behavior in the Locker Room Predicts Perceptions of Task Cohesion in Youth Ice Hockey Player

Abstract

Task cohesion (i.e., perceptions of team unity towards a task goal and positive feelings towards one’s own involvement) is associated with myriad psychosocial benefits for youth athletes. Accordingly, sport researchers and youth sport stakeholders are interested in ways of fostering task cohesion. Recent work has found evidence that prosocial and antisocial behaviors among teammates are associated with athletes’ perceptions of task cohesion; however, this research has been limited to moral behavior that takes place during gameplay. Despite youth sport experiences extending well beyond practices and games, we know very little about how moral behavior between teammates, in settings outside gameplay, relates to perceptions of task cohesion. To address this knowledge gap, the current study investigated whether prosocial and antisocial behaviors in the locker room setting were associated with perceptions of task cohesion in a sample of 238 youth male ice hockey players (Mage = 10.75). Using hierarchical regression analyses, our results revealed that (a) perceptions of peer prosocial behavior was positively associated with task cohesion, (b) perceptions of peer antisocial behavior was negatively associated with task cohesion, and (c) self-reported perceptions of participants’ own moral behavior was not significantly associated with task cohesion. Given the association with perceptions of task cohesion, these findings underline the value in promoting prosocial behavior and reducing antisocial behavior in sport settings outside gameplay and hold multiple theoretical and practical implications. Notably, moral behavior that takes place outside gameplay settings may be related to perceptions of task cohesion that primarily relates to goals and interactions during gameplay.

Open access
Neurocognitive Functioning of Sport Climbers

Abstract

Sport climbing, included in the programme of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games, is increasingly gaining in popularity as a method of physical and mental health enhancement. Studies show a positive relationship between climbing and improvement of neurocognitive functioning. The aim of this study was to determine the differences in neurocognitive indicators: time of testing, memory, and location between climbers and non-climbers. The sample comprised 30 sport climbers (15 males, 15 females; aged 25 ± 4 years) practicing climbing regularly for five years, and 30 non-climbing age- and sex-matched controls. The Tactual Performance Test (Halstead-Reitan Test Battery) was used to measure neurocognitive functions (tactile-spatial functions, motion coordination, kinesthetic abilities, learning, memory). Significant differences were found between sport climbers and controls in reference to time, memory, and location (p < 0.05). Climbers reached higher memory as well as location ratios and lower time ratios in comparison to controls. Different strategies used to complete the task between the two groups were observed. The neurocognitive functioning of sport climbers manifests itself in faster recognition and differentiation of tactile input and better spatial perception, tactile perception, and movement memory.

Open access
No Modification in Blood Lipoprotein Concentration but Changes in Body Composition After 4 Weeks of Low Carbohydrate Diet (LCD) Followed by 7 Days of Carbohydrate Loading in Basketball Players

Abstract

Recently, low carbohydrate diets have become very popular due to their numerous health benefits. Unfortunately, little is known about their chronic effects on the blood lipid profile and other cardiovascular disease risk factors in athletic populations. We compared the results of a four week, well-planned low carbohydrate diet (LCD) followed by seven days of carbohydrate loading (Carbo-L) on fasting lipids - triacylglycerol’s (TAG), LDL-C, HDL-C, total cholesterol (TCh), glucose, insulin and HOMA-IR levels in 11 competitive basketball players. During the experiment, we also measured body mass (BM) and body composition changes: body fat (BF), % of body fat (PBF), and fat free mass (FFM). Both diet procedures significantly changed the fasting serum concentration of TAG (p < 0.05) and body fat content (kg and %) (p < 0.05), without negative changes in FFM. The Carbo-L procedure increased (p < 0.05) fasting glucose levels significantly. A LCD may be suggested for athletes who want to reduce body mass and fat content without compromising muscle mass. Several weeks on a LCD does not change the lipoprotein - LDL-C and HDL-C level significantly, while a seven-day Carb-L procedure may increase body fat content and fasting glucose concentration. Such dietary procedures are recommended for team sport athletes to reduce fat mass, lipid profile disorders and insulin resistance.

Open access
Post‐Activation Potentiation Increases Recruitment of Fast Twitch Fibers: A Potential Practical Application in Runners

Abstract

To determine the relationship between fatigue and post-activation potentiation, we examined the effects of sub-maximal continuous running on neuromuscular function tests, as well as on the squat jump and counter movement jump in endurance athletes. The height of the squat jump and counter movement jump and the estimate of the fast twitch fiber recruiting capabilities were assessed in seven male middle distance runners before and after 40 min of continuous running at an intensity corresponding to the individual lactate threshold. The same test was then repeated after three weeks of specific aerobic training. Since the three variables were strongly correlated, only the estimate of the fast twitch fiber was considered for the results. The subjects showed a significant improvement in the fast twitch fiber recruitment percentage after the 40 min run. Our data show that submaximal physical exercise determined a change in fast twitch muscle fiber recruitment patterns observed when subjects performed vertical jumps; however, this recruitment capacity was proportional to the subjects’ individual fast twitch muscle fiber profiles measured before the 40 min run. The results of the jump tests did not change significantly after the three-week training period. These results suggest that pre-fatigue methods, through sub-maximal exercises, could be used to take advantage of explosive capacity in middle-distance runners.

Open access
Pulmonary Rehabilitation with a Stabilometric Platform After Thoracic Surgery: A Preliminary Report

Abstract

The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of exercises on a stabilometric platform on the physical fitness and mobility of patients with lung cancer after thoracic surgery. The Experimental Group included 22, and the Control Group consisted of 21 patients. All included patients were enrolled after thoracic surgery due to lung cancer. The Experimental and Control Groups were enrolled in a 3-week in-hospital pulmonary rehabilitation program. The Experimental Group additionally performed daily 20-min training sessions on a stabilometric platform. Agility and flexibility were assessed with the Fullerton test before and after rehabilitation in both groups, and quality of life was assessed with the SF-36 questionnaire. Exercise performance stated as a distance in a 6 min walking test (6MWT) significantly improved in both groups with a medium effect size. The results of the Fullerton test indicated improvements in flexibility in both groups after the completion of the program without a significant difference between the groups and with a small effect size. In the Experimental Group, the best results were observed in the Arm curl (p = 0.0001), Chair stand (p = 0.04), Up and go (p = 0.001) and Chair sit and reach (p = 0.0001) tasks. No deterioration in the quality of life was observed in the Experimental or the Control Group after the completion of the program. Between-group analyses revealed significant differences in the Role-Physical (RP) (p = 0.020) and Mental-Health (MH) (p = 0.025) domains of the SF-36. The rehabilitation program with a stabilometric platform improved agility and flexibility of patients after thoracic surgery without an effect size or significant differences between the Experimental and Control Groups.

Open access