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  • Author: Izabela Rutkowska x
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Open access

Grzegorz Bednarczuk, Izabela Rutkowska and Waldemar Skowroński


Introduction: Classification of athletes in disability sports aims to give athletes equal opportunities in competition. In most sport disciplines, athlete’s functional capabilities are taken into consideration and on this basis the athlete is classified into the appropriate sport class. The issue is relevant and it is an important direction of research undertaken in the field of disability sport. Assuming that sport results are resultants of athlete’s functional capabilities and level of training, the analysis of sports results obtained by athletes with disabilities, especially those obtained during major events, becomes the focus of research.

Material and methods: The aim of the analysis was to enable an assessment of the classification system in relation to the results obtained by swimmers in each sport class. For the analysis we used the official results in swimming in all styles at all distances, obtained during Paralympics Games in 2000-2012 by women and menwith locomotor disability. To assess the significance of differences in results between particular sport classes, the Mann–Whitney U test was used. The adopted level of significance was set at p < 0.05.

Results and conlusions: The results of the analysis indicate that the classification system for swimming differentiates competitors in terms of the results obtained. This refers mainly to men in particular sport classes, which may be an indicator of a high performance level in this sports discipline. In the case of women, no differences (in some cases) have been observed between the results obtained by athletes, especially between classes where swimmers with smaller functional deficits compete. This can serve as a reason for combining these classes, which could lead to the increase in sports performance level in women’s swimming.

Open access

Natalia Morgulec-Adamowicz, Andrzej Kosmol, Magdalena Bogdan, Bartosz Molik, Izabela Rutkowska and Grzegorz Bednarczuk

Game Efficiency of Wheelchair Rugby Athletes at the 2008 Paralympic Games with Regard to Player Classification

Purpose. The purpose of the study was to examine game efficiency of elite wheelchair rugby players in consideration of International Wheelchair Rugby Federation (IWRF) classification during the 2008 Paralympic Games played according to the old wheelchair rugby rules.

Basic procedures. A group of 77 athletes representing 8 national teams participated in the study. Each team played 5 games for 32 min each. Athletes who played for more than 8 min in total at the 2008 Paralympics qualified for the study. The seven IWRF player point classes were collapsed into four groups. The game efficiency analysis was based on the IWRF Statistical Reports. The following six game efficiency parameters were analyzed: played time (T), sum of all points scored (PT), assist passes (AS), assist blocks (AB), turnovers (TO) and steals (ST).

Main findings. The major finding of the study was that most differences in PT, AS, AB, TO and ST were found among all the examined groups (I-IV), except groups I and II. The played time (T) was not sensitive enough to identify significant differences among all the groups. This indicates that played time in the context of substitutions limited by classification point requirements does not reflect the differences between player classes.

Conclusions. Generally, there was a tendency for highpoint class players to perform better. The study findings point to the importance of analysis of game efficiency of elite wheelchair rugby players with regard to their IWRF classification during tournaments played according to the new wheelchair rugby rules.

Open access

Izabela Rutkowska, Grzegorz Bednarczuk, Bartosz Molik, Natalia Morgulec-Adamowicz, Jolanta Marszałek, Kalina Kaźmierska-Kowalewska and Krzysztof Koc


The aims of this study were twofold: to assess the level of balance of people with visual impairment against the BOT-2 standard scores for the able-bodied, and to identify in which trials subjects had the greatest difficulties in maintaining balance with respect to the degree of vision loss and age categories. One hundred twenty-seven subjects with visual impairment aged 6-16 years, participated in the study (68 girls and 59 boys). The division for partially sighted people (61) and the blind (66) was made according to the WHO classification. Functional balance assessment was made using a balance subtest from the Bruininks-Oseretsky test. Significant relationships were noticed between age and the level of balance (χ2 = 8.35 p <0,05), as well as between the degree of vision loss and the level of balance (χ2 = 24.53 p <0,001). The level of balance of almost all blind subjects was below (20%) or well-below (60%) the average for the able-bodied. The subjects’ ability to maintain balance was not dependent on gender and was associated primarily with the degree of visual impairment and age. Partially sighted people had better balance than the blind and the decrease in visual acuity resulted in reduction of balance skills. The lowest level of balance was observed in blind students aged 7-11 years. Elaborating physical fitness improvement programs for children and adolescents with visual impairment, diversity of age, the degree of vision loss and limitations of ablility to maintain balance should be taken into account.

Open access

Bartosz Molik, Natalia Morgulec-Adamowicz, Andrzej Kosmol, Krzysztof Perkowski, Grzegorz Bednarczuk, Waldemar Skowroński, Miguel Angel Gomez, Krzysztof Koc, Izabela Rutkowska and Robert J Szyman


Goalball is a Paralympic sport exclusively for athletes who are visually impaired and blind. The aims of this study were twofold: to describe game performance of elite male goalball players based upon the degree of visual impairment, and to determine if game performance was related to anthropometric characteristics of elite male goalball players. The study sample consisted of 44 male goalball athletes. A total of 38 games were recorded during the Summer Paralympic Games in London 2012. Observations were reported using the Game Efficiency Sheet for Goalball. Additional anthropometric measurements included body mass (kg), body height (cm), the arm span (cm) and length of the body in the defensive position (cm). The results differentiating both groups showed that the players with total blindness obtained higher means than the players with visual impairment for game indicators such as the sum of defense (p = 0.03) and the sum of good defense (p = 0.04). The players with visual impairment obtained higher results than those with total blindness for attack efficiency (p = 0.04), the sum of penalty defenses (p = 0.01), and fouls (p = 0.01). The study showed that athletes with blindness demonstrated higher game performance in defence. However, athletes with visual impairment presented higher efficiency in offensive actions. The analyses confirmed that body mass, body height, the arm span and length of the body in the defensive position did not differentiate players’ performance at the elite level.

Open access

Jolanta Marszalek, Bartosz Molik, Miguel Angel Gomez, Kęstutis Skučas, Judit Lencse-Mucha, Witold Rekowski, Vaida Pokvytyte, Izabela Rutkowska and Kalina Kaźmierska-Kowalewska


The aim of this study was to evaluate relationships between anaerobic performance, field tests, game performance and anthropometric variables of sitting volleyball players. Twenty elite Polish sitting volleyball players were tested using the 30 s Wingate Anaerobic Test for arm crank ergometer and participated in six physical field tests. Heights in position to block and to spike, as well as arm reach were measured. Players were observed during the game on the court in terms of effectiveness of the serve, block, attack, receive and defense. Pearson analysis and the Spearman's rank correlation coefficient were used. The strongest correlations were found between the chest pass test and mean power and peak power (r=.846; p=.001 and r=.708; p=.0005, respectively), and also between the T-test and peak power (r= −.718; p=.001). Mean power correlated with the 3 m test (r= −.540; p=.014), the 5 m test (r= −.592; p=.006), and the T-test (r= −.582; p=.007). Peak power correlated with the 3 m test (r= −.632; p=.003), the 5 m test (r= −.613; p=.004), speed & agility (r= −.552; p=.012) and speed & endurance (r=−.546; p=.013). Significant correlations were observed between anthropometric parameters and anaerobic performance variables (p≤.001), and also between anthropometric parameters and field tests (p≤.05). Game performance and physical fitness of sitting volleyball players depended on their anthropometric variables: reach of arms, the position to block and to spike. The chest pass test could be used as a non-laboratory field test of anaerobic performance of sitting volleyball players.