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Marcin Pasek and Jacek Olszewski

Abstract

The aim of the article is to present the factors which affect the choice of place of recreation, as well as indicate the preferred forms of physical activity taken up there. The authors also discussed the relationship between distance from open areas and frequency of visits. Moreover, they evaluated current knowledge about the role of the natural environment as a physical recreation space. The research was conducted among a group of 305 physically active individuals (students of the Academy of Physical Education and Sport in Gdańsk), using questionnaires. The respondents defined the role of location in comparison to other motivational factors for a range of physical activities (recreation). They also spoke about their preferred forms of physical activity in the natural environment, compared to the roles of natural and human environments with regard to physical activity. They also provided an answer to the question whether an open area which does not provide respondents with an opportunity to undertake their favoured recreation would remain of interest. The study results demonstrate the unquestionable importance of having access to attractive natural surroundings with respect to physical activity. This allows a relation to be made between leisure in the natural environment and an improvement in the health of the physically active.

Open access

Viktor Mishchenko, Stanislaw Sawczyn, Agnieszka Cybulska and Marcin Pasek

Abstract

Purpose. The aim of the study was to determine if an 8-week-long endurance fitness training with elastic belts would increase the strength-endurance of the inspiratory muscles and lung function characteristics, and to assess whether these changes were consistent with an increase in aerobic power and exercise capacity in healthy young women. Methods. Twenty-two females aged 20-25 years were randomly allocated into 2 groups. The experimental group preformed 8-week-long exercises on stationary bikes with an elastic belt on the lower part of the chest. The control group underwent the same workout, without elastic belts. Vital capacity, forced vital capacity, maximal voluntary ventilation, maximal inspiratory and expiratory pressure, sustained maximal inspiratory pressure, physical activity status, and perceived exertion scores were measured. In the incremental exercise test, work capacity and maximal oxygen uptake were assessed. Tidal volume, minute ventilation (VE), oxygen uptake (VO2), VE/VO2, heart rate (HR), and VO2/HR were continuously monitored. The cycle performance at the power of the ventilatory threshold was evaluated on the following day. Results. The fitness training with elastic belts significantly improved the strength and strength-endurance of the inspiratory muscles, the functional cardio-respiratory capabilities, and aerobic work output. In the control group, the studied parameters were not significantly increased. Conclusions. Applying elastic belts to fitness endurance exercises improves the strength and strength-endurance of inspiratory muscles, cardio-respiratory capabilities, and aerobic power, which additionally raises aerobic work output in fitness training of young women.

Open access

Leszek Marks, Alaa Salem, Fabian Welc, Jerzy Nitychoruk, Zhongyuan Chen, Abdelfattah Zalat, Aleksandra Majecka, Marta Chodyka, Marcin Szymanek and Anna Tołoczko-Pasek

Abstract

The Lake Qarun (Faiyum Oasis, northern Egypt) is a relic of the much larger Holocene lake. Past lake levels and extensions were reconstructed, based on setting of archaeological sites scattered along northern paleoshores of the ancient lake. However, geoarcheological works did not yield enough data to establish continuous environmental history of the lake. A deep drilling FA-1 on the southeastern shore of the lake, performed in 2014, supplied with a core, 26 m long that is the one of the longest lake sediment cores in northeastern Africa. The basal section of the core consisted of thin-laminated diatom marly deposits, underlain at the Late Pleistocene/Holocene boundary by coarse-grained sands. The sediment lamine were quite well developed, especially in the lower part of the core. Preliminary results indicated annually deposited sediment sequence with seasonality signals provided by microlamine of diatoms, calcite, organic matter and clastic material. Early Holocene varved sediments from the Faiyum Oasis supplied with exceptional paleoenvironmental data for northeastern Africa, which enriched a record from previous logs drilled at the southwestern margin of the Qarun Lake.

Open access

Leszek Marks, Jan Dzierżek, Robert Janiszewski, Jarosław Kaczorowski, Leszek Lindner, Aleksandra Majecka, Michał Makos, Marcin Szymanek, Anna Tołoczko-Pasek and Barbara Woronko

Abstract

Though the stratigraphical and palaeogeographical framework of the Quaternary in Poland is still to be completed, several crucial points have been confirmed recently. The preglacial series, accepted for years as belonging to the Lower Pleistocene, is undoubtedly of Early Pliocene age, with a huge hiatus above almost until the uppermost Lower Pleistocene. The earliest glaciation in Poland (Nidanian) occurred at about 900 ka BP when the ice sheet reached the mid-southern part of the country. The following Podlasian Interglacial embraced the Brunhes/Matuyama boundary in the middle, in a similar fashion to the corresponding Cromerian Complex in Western Europe. The late Early and early Middle Pleistocene interglacials in Poland comprised 2–3 optima each, whereas every one of the younger interglacials was characterised by a single optimum only. The Late Vistulian ice sheet was most extensive in the western part of Poland (Leszno Phase) whereas the younger Poznań Phase was more extensive in the central and eastern part of the country. This was due to the varied distance from the glaciation center in Scandinavia, making the ice sheet margin reach a terminal position in different times. Palaeoclimatological research in the Tatra Mountains has provided new evidence for the atmospheric circulation over Europe. During cold phases of the Pleistocene in Poland a continental climate extended further westwards, quite the opposite that occurring during warmer intervals.

Open access

Abdelfattah A. Zalat, Leszek Marks, Fabian Welc, Alaa Salem, Jerzy Nitychoruk, Zhongyuan Chen, Aleksandra Majecka, Marcin Szymanek, Marta Chodyka, Anna Tołoczko-Pasek, Qianli Sun, Xiaoshuang Zhao and Jun Jiang

Abstract

This study evaluates changes in the environmental and climatic conditions in the Faiyum Oasis during the Holocene based on diatom analyses of the sediment FA-1 core from the southern seashore of the Qarun Lake. The studied FA-1 core was 26 m long and covered the time span ca. 9.000 cal. yrs BP. Diatom taxa were abundant and moderately to well-preserved throughout the core sediments. Planktonic taxa were most abundant than the benthic and epiphytic forms, which were very rare and sparsely distributed. The most dominant planktonic genera were Aulacoseira and Stephanodiscus followed by frequently distribution of Cyclostephanos and Cyclotella species. The stratigraphic distribution patterns of the recorded diatoms through the Holocene sediments explained five ecological diatom groups. These groups represent distinctive environmental conditions, which were mainly related to climatic changes through the early and middle Holocene, in addition to anthropogenic activity during the late Holocene. Comparison of diatom assemblages in the studied sediment core suggests that considerable changes occurred in water level as well as salinity. There were several high stands of the freshwater lake level during humid, warmer-wet climatic phases marked by dominance of planktonic, oligohalobous and alkaliphilous diatoms alternated with lowering of the lake level and slight increases in salinity and alkalinity during warm arid conditions evident by prevalence of brackish water diatoms.