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Open access

Monika Chudecka and Anna Lubkowska

The Use of Thermal Imaging to Evaluate Body Temperature Changes of Athletes During Training and a Study on the Impact of Physiological and Morphological Factors on Skin Temperature

Purpose. The aim of this study was to assess the temperature changes of selected body surfaces (the arm and forearm) as a response to 90-minute physical exercise as well as to analyze the impact of physiological and morphological factors on the dynamics of temperature change. Methods. A study group that consisted of 12 professional volleyball players was subjected to endurance training which lasted 90 minutes. Numerous physiological and morphological factors were measured, with mean temperatures registered from the body surface of the upper extremities before, immediately after, and ten min after physical effort by a thermal camera (SC500 ThermaCAM camera) at room temperature. Results. After physical exercise, a fall in skin temperature resulting from prolonged sweating during the dynamic exercise tests was observed. The temperature changes in volleyball players, recorded in a series of tests, were found to be larger on the front surfaces of their upper extremities when compared to the rear. In addition, statistically significant positive correlation between maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max) and %HRmax, calculated with the decrease in skin temperatures, was found. Conclusions. The strong and statistically significant influence of maximum oxygen uptake on the drop in surface temperature of the upper extremities (arm and forearm) immediately after the exercise indicates that thermography can be used as an additional, non-invasive method that provides information on a player's fitness level in comparison to other athletes.

Open access

Monika Chudecka, Anna Lubkowska, Katarzyna Leźnicka and Krzysztof Krupecki

Abstract

In order to achieve higher efficiency of training and thus better athletic performance, new research and diagnostic methods are constantly being developed, particularly those that are non-invasive. One such a method is thermography, suitable for quantitative and therefore objective evaluation of variables, such as changes in the temperature of the skin covering working muscles. The aim of this study was to use a thermal imaging infrared camera to evaluate temperature changes of symmetric body surfaces over symmetrically working muscles of male scullers after exercising on a two-oared rowing ergometer and compare these to asymmetrically working muscles of handball players after an endurance training session containing elements of an actual game. In the scullers, the mean temperature of body surfaces was always lower post than pre exercise, with no significant differences in an average temperature drop between the opposite sides, indicating that the work of the muscles involved in the physical exertion on the rowing ergometer was symmetrical. In contrast, in the handball players, skin temperatures in symmetric areas over the asymmetrically working muscles showed statistically significant differences between sides, which was associated with the functional asymmetry of training. This study indicates that thermal imaging may be useful for coaches in the evaluation of technical preparations in sports in which equal involvement of symmetric muscles is a condition of success, e.g. in scullers.

Open access

Elżbieta Sieńko-Awierianów, Anna Lubkowska, Piotr Kolano and Monika Chudecka

Abstract

A gradual loss of function in the balance system may begin in the fourth decade of life. The effects of this process become visible in old age, when problems with postural stability contribute to falls, making it an important social problem. Early detection of this dysfunction is essential for minimizing the risk of age-related falls, one of the main causes of hospitalization or even death in older adults.

The aim of this study was to evaluate somatic factors that may result in the deterioration in postural stability and determine the age range in which the first changes in stability occur. The study included healthy non-sporting adults aged from 20 to 70 years. Four tests based on the Biodex Balance System were used to determine static postural stability, dynamic postural stability, risk of falling and stability limits.

The obtained results showed that dysfunctions of dynamic balance appeared significantly earlier than static balance dysfunctions, i.e. as early as at 50 years of age, and then gradually increased. Higher BMI and the percentage and absolute fat content significantly increased the risk of falls and also adversely affected the results of dynamic stability tests.

Open access

Dominika Maciejewska, Małgorzata Michalczyk, Maja Czerwińska-Rogowska, Marcin Banaszczak, Karina Ryterska, Karolina Jakubczyk, Jakub Piotrwski, Joanna Hołowko, Arleta Drozd, Paweł Wysokińki, Krzysztof Ficek, Krzysztof Wilk, Anna Lubkowska, Paweł Cięszczyk, Jerzy Bertrand and Ewa Stachowska

Abstract

The aim of the study was to investigate the efficacy of 6 week Mediterranean diet or 30% calorie restriction on the fatty acid profile and eicosanoids (hydroxyoctadecadienoi acids and hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acids) concentration. Furthermore, basic biochemical variables such as insulin, glucose, HOMA-IR, and a lipid profile were estimated. The study enrolled 94 Caucasian former athletes aged 20-42, with body height of 179 ± 16.00 cm and body mass of 89.26 ± 13.25 kg who had not been active for at least 5 years. The subjects were randomly assigned to one of the three intervention groups: CR group – the 30% calorie restriction (n = 32), MD group - the Mediterranean diet (n = 34), and C group - a control group (n = 28). The pattern of nutrition was analysed before and after the experiment using the 72 h food diaries. In order to evaluate the effect of diet intervention, the following variables were measured: anthropometrics, basic biochemical variables (insulin, fasting glucose, HOMA-IR, lipid profile), fatty acids and their blood derivatives profiles. The CR group showed significantly lower levels of several biochemical variables, i.e., BMI, total cholesterol LDL, TG, total lipids, insulin and HOMA – IR (p < 0.05). Subjects consuming the MD diet significantly decreased their BMI and reduced the level of total lipids (p < 0.05). We did not find any significant changes in the C group. The analysis of the fatty acid profile revealed that the CR group had a significantly decreased EPA level (p < 0.05). The MD group showed a significantly increased level of the DHA (p < 0.05) and improvement in the omega - 3 index (p < 0.05). Subjects following the MD also showed significantly lower concentrations of 15 - hydroxyicosatetraenoic acid (15-HETE). We did not observe any significant differences between the CR and C groups. Within short time, calorie restriction helps to improve lipid variables and insulin resistance. The MD diet seems to be more advantageous in the decrease of inflammation, but does not improve basic biochemical variables. We can conclude that calorie restriction can be a good choice for former athletes, although EPA and DHA supplementation is needed.