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Aquatic Sports and Activities

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Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1899-7562
ISSN
1640-5544
First Published
13 Jan 2009
Publication timeframe
5 times per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 32 (2012): Issue 2012 (May 2012)
Aquatic Sports and Activities

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1899-7562
ISSN
1640-5544
First Published
13 Jan 2009
Publication timeframe
5 times per year
Languages
English

Search

21 Articles
Open Access

Swimming and Aquatic Activities: State of the Art

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 5 - 7

Abstract

Swimming and Aquatic Activities: State of the Art
Open Access

Estimating the Trunk Transverse Surface Area to Assess Swimmer's Drag Force Based on their Competitive Level

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 9 - 19

Abstract

Estimating the Trunk Transverse Surface Area to Assess Swimmer's Drag Force Based on their Competitive Level

The aim of this study was to compute and validate trunk transverse surface area (TTSA) estimation equations to be used assessing the swimmer's drag force according to competitive level by gender. One group of 130 swimmers (54 females and 76 males) was used to compute the TTSA estimation equations and another group of 132 swimmers (56 females and 76 males) were used for its validations. Swimmers were photographed in the transverse plane from above, on land, in the upright and hydrodynamic position. The TTSA was measured from the swimmer's photo with specific software. It was also measured the height, body mass, biacromial diameter, chest sagital diameter (CSD) and the chest perimeter (CP). With the first group of swimmers it was computed the TTSA estimation equations based on stepwise multiple regression models from the selected anthropometrical variables. The TTSA prediction equations were significant and with a prediction level qualitatively considered as moderate. All equations included only the CP and the CSD in the final models. In all prediction models there were no significant differences between assessed and estimated mean TTSA. Coefficients of determination for the linear regression models between assessed and estimated TTSA were moderate and significant. More than 80% of the plots were within the 95% interval confidence for the Bland-Altman analysis in both genders. So, TTSA estimation equations that are easy to be computed by coached and researchers were developed. All equations accomplished the validation criteria adopted.

Keywords

  • validation
  • frontal surface area
  • drag
  • gender
  • expertise
Open Access

How Informative are the Vertical Buoyancy and the Prone Gliding Tests to Assess Young Swimmers' Hydrostatic and Hydrodynamic Profiles?

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 21 - 32

Abstract

How Informative are the Vertical Buoyancy and the Prone Gliding Tests to Assess Young Swimmers' Hydrostatic and Hydrodynamic Profiles?

The aim of this research was to develop a path-flow analysis model to highlight the relationships between buoyancy and prone gliding tests and some selected anthropometrical and biomechanical variables. Thirty-eight young male swimmers (12.97 ± 1.05 years old) with several competitive levels were evaluated. It were assessed the body mass, height, fat mass, body surface area, vertical buoyancy, prone gliding after wall push-off, stroke length, stroke frequency and velocity after a maximal 25 [m] swim. The confirmatory model included the body mass, height, fat mass, prone gliding test, stroke length, stroke frequency and velocity. All theoretical paths were verified except for the vertical buoyancy test that did not present any relationship with anthropometrical and biomechanical variables nor with the prone gliding test. The good-of-fit from the confirmatory path-flow model, assessed with the standardized root mean square residuals (SRMR), is considered as being close to the cut-off value, but even so not suitable of the theory (SRMR = 0.11). As a conclusion, vertical buoyancy and prone gliding tests are not the best techniques to assess the swimmer's hydrostatic and hydrodynamic profile, respectively.

Keywords

  • competitive swimming
  • evaluation
  • children
  • performance
Open Access

Effect of Different Loads on Stroke and Coordination Parameters During Freestyle Semi-Tethered Swimming

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 33 - 41

Abstract

Effect of Different Loads on Stroke and Coordination Parameters During Freestyle Semi-Tethered Swimming

The aim of this study was to analyse to what extent the use of different loads modifies freestyle stroke and coordination parameters during semi-tethered swimming, and to examine whether those changes are positive or negative to swimming performance. First, behaviour of swimming speed (v), stroke rate (SR) and stroke length (SL) with increasing loads was examined. Secondly, mean and peak speed of propulsive phases (propvmean and propvpeak) were analysed, as well as the relative difference between them (%v). Finally, index of coordination (IdC) was assessed. Eighteen male swimmers (22.10±4.31years, 1.79±0.07m, 76.74±9.00kg) performed 12.5m maximal sprints, pulling a different load each trial (0, 1.59, 2.21, 2.84, 3.46, 4.09, 4.71, 5.34, 5.96, 6.59, 7.21 and 7.84kg). Rest between repetitions was five minutes. Their feet were tied together, keeping a pull-buoy between legs and isolating the upper limb action. A speedometer was used to measure intra-cycle speed and the test was recorded by a frontal and a lateral underwater cameras. Variables v and SL decreased significantly when load increased, while SR remained constant (p<0.05). Propvmean and propvpeak decreased significantly with increasing loads (p<0.05). In contrast, %v grew when load rose (r = 0.922, p<0.01), being significantly different from free swimming above 4.71kg. For higher loads, swimmers did not manage to keep a constant velocity during a complete trial. IdC was found to increase with loads, significantly from 2.84kg (p<0.05). It was concluded that semi-tethered swimming is one training method useful to enhance swimmers' performance, but load needs to be individually determined and carefully controlled.

Keywords

  • intra-cycle speed
  • propulsive phases
  • index of coordination
  • resisted training
Open Access

Differences in the Efficiency Between the Grab and Track Starts for Both Genders in Greek Young Swimmers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 43 - 51

Abstract

Differences in the Efficiency Between the Grab and Track Starts for Both Genders in Greek Young Swimmers

The aim of this study was to determine the differences in the kinematic parameters between the grab and track starts and the differences in these two starts between genders. A total of 27 swimmers at the competitive level participated in the study, 13 boys (mean ± SD: age 15.8 ± 0.8 years, body mass 67.7 ± 7.7 kg and body height 178.6 ± 5.7 cm) and 14 girls (mean ± SD: age 16 ± 0.8 years, body mass 59.2 ± 6.6 kg and body height 166.2 ± 6.7 cm). Each swimmer performed three attempts for both start techniques. The best attempt of the grab start and the track start was taken for further analysis. The following kinematic parameters were analysed: flight distance, flight time, flight velocity, entry angle and reaction time. The males had greater numeric values for the results in all kinematic parameters for the grab start compared with the track start, except for flight velocity and entry angle (flight time 0.42 vs. 0.41 s, flight distance 3.21 vs. 3.14 m, flight velocity 7.76 vs. 7.83 m/s, entry angle 44.22 vs. 43.85 degrees and reaction time 0.86 vs. 0.81 s). The females also had greater numeric values for the results in all kinematic parameters for the grab start compared with the track start, except for flight time (flight time 0.38 vs. 0.38 s, flight distance 2.82 vs. 2.73 m, flight velocity 7.47 vs. 7.31 m/s, entry angle 45.18 vs. 44.79 degrees and reaction time 0.88 vs. 0.82 s). These results indicate that the males had significantly better results for flight time and flight distance compared with the females for the grab start (flight time 0.42 vs. 0.38 s, flight distance 3.21 vs. 2.82 m). In the case of the track start, the males had significantly better results for flight distance (3.14 vs. 2.73 m). Exploring the characteristics of the two starts did not lead to any significant kinematic differences. Therefore, a conclusion that demonstrates the superiority of one of the techniques cannot be reached. The coach, together with each swimmer individually, should devote some time to decide after some tests what type of start is better for the body type and general qualifications of the swimmer.

Keywords

  • swimming
  • start technique
  • kinematic analysis
  • flight parameters
Open Access

Qualitative Evaluation of Water Displacement in Simulated Analytical Breaststroke Movements

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 53 - 63

Abstract

Qualitative Evaluation of Water Displacement in Simulated Analytical Breaststroke Movements

One purpose of evaluating a swimmer is to establish the individualized optimal technique. A swimmer's particular body structure and the resulting movement pattern will cause the surrounding water to react in differing ways. Consequently, an assessment method based on flow visualization was developed complimentary to movement analysis and body structure quantification. A fluorescent dye was used to make the water displaced by the body visible on video. To examine the hypothesis on the propulsive mechanisms applied in breaststroke swimming, we analyzed the movements of the surrounding water during 4 analytical breaststroke movements using the flow visualization technique.

Keywords

  • swimming
  • flow visualization
  • breaststroke
Open Access

Effects of a Process-Oriented Goal Setting Model on Swimmer's Performance

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 65 - 76

Abstract

Effects of a Process-Oriented Goal Setting Model on Swimmer's Performance

The aim of this work was to study the impact of the implementation of a mental training program on swimmers' chronometric performance, with national and international Portuguese swimmers, based on the goal setting model proposed by Vasconcelos-Raposo (2001). This longitudinal study comprised a sample of nine swimmers (four male and five female) aged between fourteen and twenty, with five to eleven years of competitive experience. All swimmers were submitted to an evaluation system during two years. The first season involved the implementation of the goal setting model, and the second season was only evaluation, totaling seven assessments over the two years. The main results showed a significant improvement in chronometric performance during psychological intervention, followed by a reduction in swimmers' performance in the second season, when there was no interference from the investigators (follow-up).

Keywords

  • goal setting
  • mental training
  • swimming
  • performance
Open Access

Effectiveness of the Power Dry-Land Training Programmes in Youth Swimmers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 77 - 86

Abstract

Effectiveness of the Power Dry-Land Training Programmes in Youth Swimmers

The aim of the study was to evaluate the effects of the dry-land power training on swimming force, swimming performance and strength in youth swimmers. Twenty six male swimmers, free from injuries and training regularly at least 6 times a week, were enrolled in the study and randomly assigned to one of two groups: experimental (n=14, mean age 14.0 ± 0.5 yrs, mean height 1.67±0.08 m and mean body mass 55.71 ±9.55 kg) and control (n=12, mean age 14.1 ± 0.5 yrs, mean height 1.61±0.11 m and mean body mass 49.07 ±8.25 kg). The experimental group took part in a combined swimming and dry-land power training. The control group took part in swimming training only. The training programmes in water included a dominant aerobic work in front crawl. In this research the experimental group tended to present slightly greater improvements in sprint performance. However, the stroke frequency insignificantly decreased (-4.30%, p>0.05) in the experimental group and increased (6.28%, p>0.05) in the control group. The distance per stroke insignificantly increased in the experimental group (5.98%, p>0.05) and insignificantly decreased in the control group (-5.36%, p>0.05). A significant improvement of tethered swimming force for the experimental group (9.64%, p<0.02) was found, whereas the increase was not statistically significant in the control group (2.86%, p>0.05). The main data cannot clearly state that power training allowed an enhancement in swimming performance, although a tendency to improve swimming performance in tethered swimming was noticed.

Keywords

  • ergometer
  • strength
  • tethered force
  • youth swimmers
Open Access

Age- and Sex-Related Differences in Force-Velocity Characteristics of Upper and Lower Limbs of Competitive Adolescent Swimmers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 87 - 95

Abstract

Age- and Sex-Related Differences in Force-Velocity Characteristics of Upper and Lower Limbs of Competitive Adolescent Swimmers

While there is a direct relationship between maximal anaerobic power (Pmax) and swimming performance, the relationship between upper and lower limbs with regard to Pmax and force-velocity (F-v) characteristics is not clear. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of age and sex on the ratios of mechanical characteristics between upper and lower extremities of adolescent swimmers. Seventeen girls (aged 14.7±1.8 yr) (mean±standard deviation) and 28 boys (14.6±1.4 yr), all members of competitive swimming clubs, performed a F-v test for both legs and arms. In legs, boys had higher values of Pmax (t43=2.4, p<0.05), Pmax expressed in relative to body mass values (rPmax, t43=3.4, p<0.01) and v0 (t43=4.3, p<0.001), while no differences were found for F0 (t43=1.0, p=0.31) and v0/F0 (t43=0.55, p=0.59). In arms, boys had higher values of Pmax (t43=3.2, p<0.01), rPmax (t43=3.9, p<0.001) and v0 (t43=3.4, p<0.01), while no differences were found for F0 (t43=1.9, p=0.06) and v0/F0 (t43=0.16, p=0.87). However, no sex difference was found with regard to the ratios of Pmax (t43=1.9, p=0.06), F0 (t43=1.2, p=0.23) and v0 (t43=1.3, p=0.20) between upper and lower extremities. There was direct relationship between age and Pmax of legs (r=0.64, p<0.01 in girls; r=0.43, p<0.05 in boys) and arms (r=0.56, p<0.05; r=0.57, p<0.01 respectively), while there was not any significant association between age and the ratios of mechanical characteristics of upper and lower limbs. These findings emphasize the need for separate evaluation of arms' and legs' force-velocity characteristics on a regular basis and the consideration of these measures in training design.

Keywords

  • arms
  • legs
  • power output
  • speed
  • strength
Open Access

The Development and Prediction of Athletic Performance in Freestyle Swimming

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 97 - 107

Abstract

The Development and Prediction of Athletic Performance in Freestyle Swimming

This paper analyses the dynamics of changes between the performances of elite freestyle swimmers recorded at particular Olympic Games. It also uses a set of chronologically ordered results to predict probable times of swimmers at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. The analysis of past performances of freestyle swimmers and their prediction have revealed a number of interesting tendencies within separately examined results of men and women. Women's results improve more dynamically compared with men's. Moreover, the difference between women's and men's results is smaller, the longer the swimming distance. As both male and female athletes tend to compete more and more vigorously within their groups, the gap between the gold medallist and the last finisher in the final is constantly decreasing, which provides significant evidence that this sport discipline continues to develop.

Keywords

  • swimming
  • world records
  • rate of improvement
  • performance
Open Access

Analysis on the Time and Frequency Domains of the Acceleration in Front Crawl Stroke

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 109 - 120

Abstract

Analysis on the Time and Frequency Domains of the Acceleration in Front Crawl Stroke

The swimming involves accelerations and decelerations in the swimmer's body. Thus, the main objective of this study is to make a temporal and frequency analysis of the acceleration in front crawl swimming, regarding the gender and the performance. The sample was composed by 31 male swimmers (15 of high-level and 16 of low-level) and 20 female swimmers (11 of high-level and 9 of low-level). The acceleration was registered from the third complete cycle during eight seconds in a 25 meters maximum velocity test. A position transducer (200Hz) was used to collect the data, and it was synchronized to an aquatic camera (25Hz). The acceleration in the temporal (root mean square, minimum and maximum of the acceleration) and frequency (power peak, power peak frequency and spectral area) domains was calculated with Fourier analysis, as well as the velocity and the spectrums distribution in function to present one or more main peaks (type 1 and type 2). A one-way ANOVA was used to establish differences between gender and performance. Results show differences between genders in all the temporal domain variables (p<0.05) and only the Spectral Area (SA) in the frequency domain (p<0.05). Between gender and performance, only the Root Mean Square (RMS) showed differences in the performance of the male swimmers (p<0.05) and in the higher level swimmers, the Maximum (Max) and the Power Peak (PP) of the acceleration showed differences between both genders (p<0.05). These results confirms the importance of knowing the RMS to determine the efficiency of the swimmers regarding gender and performance level

Keywords

  • swimming
  • Root Mean Square
  • power peak
  • power peak frequency
  • spectrum area
Open Access

Time to Exhaustion at the VO2max Velocity in Swimming: A Review

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 121 - 134

Abstract

Time to Exhaustion at the VO<sub>2</sub>max Velocity in Swimming: A Review

The aim of this study was to present a review on the time to exhaustion at the minimum swimming velocity corresponding to maximal oxygen consumption (TLim-vVO2max). This parameter is critical both for the aerobic power and the lactate tolerance bioenergetical training intensity zones, being fundamental to characterize it, and to point out its main determinants. The few number of studies conducted in this topic observed that swimmers were able to maintain an exercise intensity corresponding to maximal aerobic power during 215 to 260 s (elite swimmers), 230 to 260 s (high level swimmers) and 310 to 325 s (low level swimmers), and no differences between genders were reported. TLim-vVO2max main bioenergetic and functional determinants were swimming economy and VO2 slow component (direct relationship), and vVO2max, velocity at anaerobic threshold and blood lactate production (inverse relationship); when more homogeneous groups of swimmers were analysed, the inverse correlation value between TLim-vVO2max and vVO2max was not so evident. In general, TLim-vVO2max was not related to VO2max. TLim-vVO2max seems also to be influenced by stroking parameters, with a direct relationship to stroke length and stroke index, and an inverse correlation with stroke rate. Assessing TLim-vVO2max, together with the anaerobic threshold and the biomechanical general parameters, will allow a larger spectrum of testing protocols application, helping to build more objective and efficient training programs.

Keywords

  • bioenergetics
  • biomechanics
  • aerobic power
  • time limit
  • training
Open Access

The Reliability, Validity and Applicability of Two Sport-Specific Power Tests in Synchronized Swimming

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 135 - 145

Abstract

The Reliability, Validity and Applicability of Two Sport-Specific Power Tests in Synchronized Swimming

Sport-specific tests are rarely investigated in synchronized swimming (synchro). The aim of this research was to study the reliability and the validity of two sport-specific tests that are based on synchro elements, namely, the Barracuda thrust ("Barracuda") and the Boost. The Barracuda is a move in which the swimmer begins in the back pike position (head down with the legs perpendicular to the surface of the water) and then moves the legs and hips rapidly upward, unrolling the body to obtain a maximal vertical position above the surface of the water. The Boost occurs when the swimmer rises rapidly out of the water, head first, to bring as much of the body as possible above the surface of the water. Both patterns are considered power moves and are therefore theoretically related to explosive strength. This study involved 22 female competitive synchro swimmers aged 16-18 years. The variables examined included performance on the Barracuda, Boost and countermovement jump and anthropometric measures (body height, body weight and body composition). Statistical analyses showed appropriate reliability for all tests, with no systematic bias between trials. A factor analysis calculated for the Barracuda, Boost and countermovement jump revealed one significant factor based on the Guttmann-Kaiser criterion with all three tests significantly projected. The structure of the significant factor did not change if the results for the Boost and Barracuda were normalized for body height. The Boost and Barracuda, but not the countermovement jump, were significantly correlated with the competitive achievements of the swimmers. In conclusion, the Boost and Barracuda are reliable and valid measures of the explosive strength of synchronized swimmers and are significantly related to competitive achievement.

Keywords

  • test construction
  • field testing
  • factor analysis
  • synchro
Open Access

A Comparison of the Physiological Responses to Underwater Arm Cranking and Breath Holding Between Synchronized Swimmers and Breath Holding Untrained Women

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 147 - 156

Abstract

A Comparison of the Physiological Responses to Underwater Arm Cranking and Breath Holding Between Synchronized Swimmers and Breath Holding Untrained Women

Exercise and breath holding in the water such as that performed in the sport of synchronized swimming may evoke the physiological consequences of the diving response. The purpose of this study was to investigate the physiological responses of breath holding during underwater arm cranking in synchronized swimmers who are trained in breath holding and compare these responses to untrained women. Each participant performed 6 breath holding periods in the water (2 × 10s, 2 × 20s and 2 × 25s) with 2 minutes of normal breathing in between, in either an ascending or descending order while performing arm crank exercise. The intensity of arm crank exercise was set below the individual ventilatory threshold. Both synchronized swimmers and controls were matched on sitting height and then randomly divided into 2 groups: one group started breath holding with the longest (25s) breath holding periods while the other group began breath holding with the shortest (10s) breath holding periods. The synchronized swimmers experienced a significant decrease in heart rate while breath holding for 20 and 25s but the changes in heart rate for the control group was not consistent between subgroups. Full recovery from breath holding was identified for minute ventilation after 25s of recovery from breath holding for all groups. Results suggest synchronized swimmers exhibited a better adaptation to breath holding while exercising underwater.

Keywords

  • water immersion
  • heart rate
  • oxygen consumption
  • ventilation
Open Access

General Anthropometric and Specific Physical Fitness Profile of High-Level Junior Water Polo Players

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 157 - 165

Abstract

General Anthropometric and Specific Physical Fitness Profile of High-Level Junior Water Polo Players

The aim of this study was to investigate the status and playing position differences in anthropometric measures and specific physical fitness in high-level junior water polo players.

The sample of subjects comprised 110 water polo players (17 to 18 years of age), including one of the world's best national junior teams for 2010. The subjects were divided according to their playing positions into: Centers (N = 16), Wings (N = 28), perimeter players (Drivers; N = 25), Points (N = 19), and Goalkeepers (N = 18). The variables included body height, body weight, body mass index, arm span, triceps- and subscapular-skinfold. Specific physical fitness tests comprised: four swimming tests, namely: 25m, 100m, 400m and a specific anaerobic 4×50m test (average result achieved in four 50m sprints with a 30 sec pause), vertical body jump (JUMP; maximal vertical jump from the water starting from a water polo defensive position) and a dynamometric power achieved in front crawl swimming (DYN).

ANOVA with post-hoc comparison revealed significant differences between positions for most of the anthropometrics, noting that the Centers were the heaviest and had the highest BMI and subscapular skinfold. The Points achieved the best results in most of the swimming capacities and JUMP test. No significant group differences were found for the 100m and 4×50m tests. The Goalkeepers achieved the lowest results for DYN.

Given the representativeness of the sample of subjects, the results of this study allow specific insights into the physical fitness and anthropometric features of high-level junior water polo players and allow coaches to design a specific training program aimed at achieving the physical fitness results presented for each playing position.

Keywords

  • morphology
  • sport-specific test
  • reliability
  • water sports
Open Access

The Effect of Aquatic Intervention on the Gross Motor Function and Aquatic Skills in Children with Cerebral Palsy

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 167 - 174

Abstract

The Effect of Aquatic Intervention on the Gross Motor Function and Aquatic Skills in Children with Cerebral Palsy

The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of an aquatic intervention on the gross motor function and aquatic skills of children with cerebral palsy (CP). Twenty-nine children with CP, aged 5 to 14, were recruited. Fourteen children completed an aquatic intervention (EG), and 13 children served as controls (CG). Two participants dropped out due to events (illness) unrelated to the intervention. The aquatic intervention lasted 6 weeks (2 sessions per week at 55 minutes per session) with a follow-up period of 3 weeks. The outcome measures were the Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) for motor function and the Water Orientation Test Alyn 2 (WOTA 2) for aquatic skills assessment. A significant improvement was observed in the secondary assessment of GMFM and WOTA 2. In contrast to the aquatic skills improvement, the GMFM change was not maintained at follow-up. Our results indicate that children with CP can improve gross motor function on dry land and aquatic skills with a 6-week water intervention. The intervention period was too short for sustainable improvement in dry-land motor skills after intervention (followup), but time was sufficient to achieve sustainable improvements in aquatic skills.

Keywords

  • aquatherapy
  • experiment
  • follow up
  • pediatrics
Open Access

Socio-Demographic Determinants of Participation in Swimming Amongst Working Residents of Warsaw

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 175 - 183

Abstract

Socio-Demographic Determinants of Participation in Swimming Amongst Working Residents of Warsaw

The aim of research is to assess the correlation between socio-demographic factors and swimming activity among the working population of Warsaw. The questionnaire survey included 4405 randomly selected residents of Warsaw. The correlation between the swimming activity and the variables characterizing the socio-demographic structure of the respondents were assessed by log-linear modelling. The significance of the impact of factors included in the analysis was determined using the chi-square test. Thirty-five per cent of the respondents declared recreational swimming. Gender, age, BMI, education, occupation, and income were significantly related to the swimming activity. Women (33%) - compared to men (38%) - were almost 1.2 times less likely to participate in swimming; similarly, overweight people (33%, OR = 0.90) and obese people (33%, OR = 0.92). People from Warsaw from 20-29 years (43%), with higher education (40%), incomes above the national average (40%), and representing the profession of an actor (52%), swam relatively more often. The results of the study might help in developing marketing plans and market segmentation strategies, as well as in forecasting the development trends of the leisure activity.

Keywords

  • swimming activity
  • socio-demographic determinants
  • Warsaw
Open Access

Effects of Aquatic and Dry Land Resistance Training Devices on Body Composition and Physical Capacity in Postmenopausal Women

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 185 - 195

Abstract

Effects of Aquatic and Dry Land Resistance Training Devices on Body Composition and Physical Capacity in Postmenopausal Women

To determine the effects of a supervised strength training program on body composition and physical capacity of older women using three different devices: weight machines, elastic bands, and aquatic devices that increase drag forces (ADIDF). Four groups were formed: control group, weight machine group (WMG), elastic band group (EBG) and a group that used ADIDF (ADIDFG). Body composition and physical capacity were assessed before and after the intervention period. The ADIDFG showed improvements in fat mass (FM), fat-free mass of the left arm (FFM-LA) and right arm (FFM-RA), knee push-up test (KPT), squat test (ST) and crunch test (CT) (p <0.05). Individuals in the EBG and WMG also improved their FM, fat free mass (FFM), FFM-LA, FFM-RA, KPU, ST and CT. ADIDF training improves body composition and physical capacity of postmenopausal women as does performing land-based training programs.

Keywords

  • aquatic training
  • weight machines
  • elastic bands
  • fitness
Open Access

The Role of Training in the Development of Adaptive Mechanisms in Freedivers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 197 - 210

Abstract

The Role of Training in the Development of Adaptive Mechanisms in Freedivers

Freediving is a sport in which athletes aim to achieve the longest or the deepest breath-hold dive. Divers are at risk of gradually increasing hypoxia and hypercapnia due to a long time spent underwater and additionally of increasing hyperoxia while depth diving. Exceeding the limits of hypoxia endurance leads to loss of consciousness or even to death whithout immediate first aid. Often enhanced world records indicate the ability to shape specific to the discipline adaptive mechanisms of cardio-pulmonary system which are individually conditioned. During stay underwater heartbeats decelerating called bradycardia, increase in blood pressure, peripheral blood vessels narrowing and blood centralization in freediver's organism. These mechanisms enhance blood oxygen management as well as transporting it first of all to essential for survival organs, i.e. brain and heart. These mechanisms are supported by spleen and adrenal glands hormonal reactions.

Keywords

  • freediving
  • breath-hold
  • training
  • adaptive mechanisms
Open Access

Deep and Shallow Water Effects on Developing Preschoolers' Aquatic Skills

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 211 - 219

Abstract

Deep and Shallow Water Effects on Developing Preschoolers' Aquatic Skills

The aim of the study was to assess deep and shallow water teaching methods in swimming lessons for preschool children and identify variations in the basic aquatic skills acquired. The study sample included 32 swimming instructors (16 from deep water programs and 16 from shallow water programs) and 98 preschool children (50 from deep water swimming pool and 48 from shallow water swimming pool). The children were also studied regarding their previous experience in swimming (6, 12 and 18 months or practice). Chi-Square test and Fisher's exact test were used to compare the teaching methodology. A discriminant analysis was conducted with Λ wilk's method to predict under what conditions students are better or worse (aquatic competence).

Results suggest that regardless of the non-significant variations found in teaching methods, the water depth can affect aquatic skill acquisition - shallow water lessons seem to impose greater water competence particularly after 6 months of practice. The discriminant function revealed a significant association between groups and all predictors for 6 months of swimming practice (p<0.001). Body position in gliding and leg displacements were the main predictors. For 12 and 18 months of practice, the discriminant function do not revealed any significant association between groups. As a conclusion, it seems that the teaching methodology of aquatic readiness based on deep and shallow water programs for preschoolers is not significantly different. However, shallow water lessons could be preferable for the development of basic aquatic skills.

Keywords

  • aquatic skills
  • shallow water
  • deep water
  • teaching methods
  • preschoolers
Open Access

Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry to Measure the Effects of a Thirteen-Week Moderate to Vigorous Aquatic Exercise and Nutritional Education Intervention on Percent Body Fat in Adults with Intellectual Disabilities from Group Home Settings

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 221 - 229

Abstract

Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry to Measure the Effects of a Thirteen-Week Moderate to Vigorous Aquatic Exercise and Nutritional Education Intervention on Percent Body Fat in Adults with Intellectual Disabilities from Group Home Settings

People with intellectual disability are more likely to be obese and extremely obese than people without intellectual disability with rates remaining elevated among adults, women and individuals living in community settings. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry measured the effects of a 13-week aquatic exercise and nutrition intervention on percent body fat in eight adults with intellectual disabilities (aged 41.0 ± 13.7 yrs) of varying fat levels (15%-39%) from two group homes. A moderate to vigorous aquatic exercise program lasted for the duration of 13 weeks with three, one-hour sessions held at a 25m pool each week. Nutritional assistants educated participants as to the importance of food choice and portion size. A two-tailed Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-ranks test determined the impact of the combined intervention on body fat percentage and BMI at pre and post test. Median body fat percentage (0.8 %) and BMI (0.3 kg/m2) decreased following the exercise intervention, but neither were statistically significant, p = .11 and p = .55, respectively. The combined intervention was ineffective at reducing percent body fat in adults with intellectual disability according to dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. These results are in agreement with findings from exercise alone interventions and suggest that more stringent nutritional guidelines are needed for this population and especially for individuals living in group home settings. The study did show that adults with intellectual disability may participate in moderate to vigorous physical activity when given the opportunity.

Keywords

  • physical activity
  • diet
  • body composition
  • swimming
  • obesity
21 Articles
Open Access

Swimming and Aquatic Activities: State of the Art

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 5 - 7

Abstract

Swimming and Aquatic Activities: State of the Art
Open Access

Estimating the Trunk Transverse Surface Area to Assess Swimmer's Drag Force Based on their Competitive Level

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 9 - 19

Abstract

Estimating the Trunk Transverse Surface Area to Assess Swimmer's Drag Force Based on their Competitive Level

The aim of this study was to compute and validate trunk transverse surface area (TTSA) estimation equations to be used assessing the swimmer's drag force according to competitive level by gender. One group of 130 swimmers (54 females and 76 males) was used to compute the TTSA estimation equations and another group of 132 swimmers (56 females and 76 males) were used for its validations. Swimmers were photographed in the transverse plane from above, on land, in the upright and hydrodynamic position. The TTSA was measured from the swimmer's photo with specific software. It was also measured the height, body mass, biacromial diameter, chest sagital diameter (CSD) and the chest perimeter (CP). With the first group of swimmers it was computed the TTSA estimation equations based on stepwise multiple regression models from the selected anthropometrical variables. The TTSA prediction equations were significant and with a prediction level qualitatively considered as moderate. All equations included only the CP and the CSD in the final models. In all prediction models there were no significant differences between assessed and estimated mean TTSA. Coefficients of determination for the linear regression models between assessed and estimated TTSA were moderate and significant. More than 80% of the plots were within the 95% interval confidence for the Bland-Altman analysis in both genders. So, TTSA estimation equations that are easy to be computed by coached and researchers were developed. All equations accomplished the validation criteria adopted.

Keywords

  • validation
  • frontal surface area
  • drag
  • gender
  • expertise
Open Access

How Informative are the Vertical Buoyancy and the Prone Gliding Tests to Assess Young Swimmers' Hydrostatic and Hydrodynamic Profiles?

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 21 - 32

Abstract

How Informative are the Vertical Buoyancy and the Prone Gliding Tests to Assess Young Swimmers' Hydrostatic and Hydrodynamic Profiles?

The aim of this research was to develop a path-flow analysis model to highlight the relationships between buoyancy and prone gliding tests and some selected anthropometrical and biomechanical variables. Thirty-eight young male swimmers (12.97 ± 1.05 years old) with several competitive levels were evaluated. It were assessed the body mass, height, fat mass, body surface area, vertical buoyancy, prone gliding after wall push-off, stroke length, stroke frequency and velocity after a maximal 25 [m] swim. The confirmatory model included the body mass, height, fat mass, prone gliding test, stroke length, stroke frequency and velocity. All theoretical paths were verified except for the vertical buoyancy test that did not present any relationship with anthropometrical and biomechanical variables nor with the prone gliding test. The good-of-fit from the confirmatory path-flow model, assessed with the standardized root mean square residuals (SRMR), is considered as being close to the cut-off value, but even so not suitable of the theory (SRMR = 0.11). As a conclusion, vertical buoyancy and prone gliding tests are not the best techniques to assess the swimmer's hydrostatic and hydrodynamic profile, respectively.

Keywords

  • competitive swimming
  • evaluation
  • children
  • performance
Open Access

Effect of Different Loads on Stroke and Coordination Parameters During Freestyle Semi-Tethered Swimming

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 33 - 41

Abstract

Effect of Different Loads on Stroke and Coordination Parameters During Freestyle Semi-Tethered Swimming

The aim of this study was to analyse to what extent the use of different loads modifies freestyle stroke and coordination parameters during semi-tethered swimming, and to examine whether those changes are positive or negative to swimming performance. First, behaviour of swimming speed (v), stroke rate (SR) and stroke length (SL) with increasing loads was examined. Secondly, mean and peak speed of propulsive phases (propvmean and propvpeak) were analysed, as well as the relative difference between them (%v). Finally, index of coordination (IdC) was assessed. Eighteen male swimmers (22.10±4.31years, 1.79±0.07m, 76.74±9.00kg) performed 12.5m maximal sprints, pulling a different load each trial (0, 1.59, 2.21, 2.84, 3.46, 4.09, 4.71, 5.34, 5.96, 6.59, 7.21 and 7.84kg). Rest between repetitions was five minutes. Their feet were tied together, keeping a pull-buoy between legs and isolating the upper limb action. A speedometer was used to measure intra-cycle speed and the test was recorded by a frontal and a lateral underwater cameras. Variables v and SL decreased significantly when load increased, while SR remained constant (p<0.05). Propvmean and propvpeak decreased significantly with increasing loads (p<0.05). In contrast, %v grew when load rose (r = 0.922, p<0.01), being significantly different from free swimming above 4.71kg. For higher loads, swimmers did not manage to keep a constant velocity during a complete trial. IdC was found to increase with loads, significantly from 2.84kg (p<0.05). It was concluded that semi-tethered swimming is one training method useful to enhance swimmers' performance, but load needs to be individually determined and carefully controlled.

Keywords

  • intra-cycle speed
  • propulsive phases
  • index of coordination
  • resisted training
Open Access

Differences in the Efficiency Between the Grab and Track Starts for Both Genders in Greek Young Swimmers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 43 - 51

Abstract

Differences in the Efficiency Between the Grab and Track Starts for Both Genders in Greek Young Swimmers

The aim of this study was to determine the differences in the kinematic parameters between the grab and track starts and the differences in these two starts between genders. A total of 27 swimmers at the competitive level participated in the study, 13 boys (mean ± SD: age 15.8 ± 0.8 years, body mass 67.7 ± 7.7 kg and body height 178.6 ± 5.7 cm) and 14 girls (mean ± SD: age 16 ± 0.8 years, body mass 59.2 ± 6.6 kg and body height 166.2 ± 6.7 cm). Each swimmer performed three attempts for both start techniques. The best attempt of the grab start and the track start was taken for further analysis. The following kinematic parameters were analysed: flight distance, flight time, flight velocity, entry angle and reaction time. The males had greater numeric values for the results in all kinematic parameters for the grab start compared with the track start, except for flight velocity and entry angle (flight time 0.42 vs. 0.41 s, flight distance 3.21 vs. 3.14 m, flight velocity 7.76 vs. 7.83 m/s, entry angle 44.22 vs. 43.85 degrees and reaction time 0.86 vs. 0.81 s). The females also had greater numeric values for the results in all kinematic parameters for the grab start compared with the track start, except for flight time (flight time 0.38 vs. 0.38 s, flight distance 2.82 vs. 2.73 m, flight velocity 7.47 vs. 7.31 m/s, entry angle 45.18 vs. 44.79 degrees and reaction time 0.88 vs. 0.82 s). These results indicate that the males had significantly better results for flight time and flight distance compared with the females for the grab start (flight time 0.42 vs. 0.38 s, flight distance 3.21 vs. 2.82 m). In the case of the track start, the males had significantly better results for flight distance (3.14 vs. 2.73 m). Exploring the characteristics of the two starts did not lead to any significant kinematic differences. Therefore, a conclusion that demonstrates the superiority of one of the techniques cannot be reached. The coach, together with each swimmer individually, should devote some time to decide after some tests what type of start is better for the body type and general qualifications of the swimmer.

Keywords

  • swimming
  • start technique
  • kinematic analysis
  • flight parameters
Open Access

Qualitative Evaluation of Water Displacement in Simulated Analytical Breaststroke Movements

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 53 - 63

Abstract

Qualitative Evaluation of Water Displacement in Simulated Analytical Breaststroke Movements

One purpose of evaluating a swimmer is to establish the individualized optimal technique. A swimmer's particular body structure and the resulting movement pattern will cause the surrounding water to react in differing ways. Consequently, an assessment method based on flow visualization was developed complimentary to movement analysis and body structure quantification. A fluorescent dye was used to make the water displaced by the body visible on video. To examine the hypothesis on the propulsive mechanisms applied in breaststroke swimming, we analyzed the movements of the surrounding water during 4 analytical breaststroke movements using the flow visualization technique.

Keywords

  • swimming
  • flow visualization
  • breaststroke
Open Access

Effects of a Process-Oriented Goal Setting Model on Swimmer's Performance

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 65 - 76

Abstract

Effects of a Process-Oriented Goal Setting Model on Swimmer's Performance

The aim of this work was to study the impact of the implementation of a mental training program on swimmers' chronometric performance, with national and international Portuguese swimmers, based on the goal setting model proposed by Vasconcelos-Raposo (2001). This longitudinal study comprised a sample of nine swimmers (four male and five female) aged between fourteen and twenty, with five to eleven years of competitive experience. All swimmers were submitted to an evaluation system during two years. The first season involved the implementation of the goal setting model, and the second season was only evaluation, totaling seven assessments over the two years. The main results showed a significant improvement in chronometric performance during psychological intervention, followed by a reduction in swimmers' performance in the second season, when there was no interference from the investigators (follow-up).

Keywords

  • goal setting
  • mental training
  • swimming
  • performance
Open Access

Effectiveness of the Power Dry-Land Training Programmes in Youth Swimmers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 77 - 86

Abstract

Effectiveness of the Power Dry-Land Training Programmes in Youth Swimmers

The aim of the study was to evaluate the effects of the dry-land power training on swimming force, swimming performance and strength in youth swimmers. Twenty six male swimmers, free from injuries and training regularly at least 6 times a week, were enrolled in the study and randomly assigned to one of two groups: experimental (n=14, mean age 14.0 ± 0.5 yrs, mean height 1.67±0.08 m and mean body mass 55.71 ±9.55 kg) and control (n=12, mean age 14.1 ± 0.5 yrs, mean height 1.61±0.11 m and mean body mass 49.07 ±8.25 kg). The experimental group took part in a combined swimming and dry-land power training. The control group took part in swimming training only. The training programmes in water included a dominant aerobic work in front crawl. In this research the experimental group tended to present slightly greater improvements in sprint performance. However, the stroke frequency insignificantly decreased (-4.30%, p>0.05) in the experimental group and increased (6.28%, p>0.05) in the control group. The distance per stroke insignificantly increased in the experimental group (5.98%, p>0.05) and insignificantly decreased in the control group (-5.36%, p>0.05). A significant improvement of tethered swimming force for the experimental group (9.64%, p<0.02) was found, whereas the increase was not statistically significant in the control group (2.86%, p>0.05). The main data cannot clearly state that power training allowed an enhancement in swimming performance, although a tendency to improve swimming performance in tethered swimming was noticed.

Keywords

  • ergometer
  • strength
  • tethered force
  • youth swimmers
Open Access

Age- and Sex-Related Differences in Force-Velocity Characteristics of Upper and Lower Limbs of Competitive Adolescent Swimmers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 87 - 95

Abstract

Age- and Sex-Related Differences in Force-Velocity Characteristics of Upper and Lower Limbs of Competitive Adolescent Swimmers

While there is a direct relationship between maximal anaerobic power (Pmax) and swimming performance, the relationship between upper and lower limbs with regard to Pmax and force-velocity (F-v) characteristics is not clear. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of age and sex on the ratios of mechanical characteristics between upper and lower extremities of adolescent swimmers. Seventeen girls (aged 14.7±1.8 yr) (mean±standard deviation) and 28 boys (14.6±1.4 yr), all members of competitive swimming clubs, performed a F-v test for both legs and arms. In legs, boys had higher values of Pmax (t43=2.4, p<0.05), Pmax expressed in relative to body mass values (rPmax, t43=3.4, p<0.01) and v0 (t43=4.3, p<0.001), while no differences were found for F0 (t43=1.0, p=0.31) and v0/F0 (t43=0.55, p=0.59). In arms, boys had higher values of Pmax (t43=3.2, p<0.01), rPmax (t43=3.9, p<0.001) and v0 (t43=3.4, p<0.01), while no differences were found for F0 (t43=1.9, p=0.06) and v0/F0 (t43=0.16, p=0.87). However, no sex difference was found with regard to the ratios of Pmax (t43=1.9, p=0.06), F0 (t43=1.2, p=0.23) and v0 (t43=1.3, p=0.20) between upper and lower extremities. There was direct relationship between age and Pmax of legs (r=0.64, p<0.01 in girls; r=0.43, p<0.05 in boys) and arms (r=0.56, p<0.05; r=0.57, p<0.01 respectively), while there was not any significant association between age and the ratios of mechanical characteristics of upper and lower limbs. These findings emphasize the need for separate evaluation of arms' and legs' force-velocity characteristics on a regular basis and the consideration of these measures in training design.

Keywords

  • arms
  • legs
  • power output
  • speed
  • strength
Open Access

The Development and Prediction of Athletic Performance in Freestyle Swimming

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 97 - 107

Abstract

The Development and Prediction of Athletic Performance in Freestyle Swimming

This paper analyses the dynamics of changes between the performances of elite freestyle swimmers recorded at particular Olympic Games. It also uses a set of chronologically ordered results to predict probable times of swimmers at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. The analysis of past performances of freestyle swimmers and their prediction have revealed a number of interesting tendencies within separately examined results of men and women. Women's results improve more dynamically compared with men's. Moreover, the difference between women's and men's results is smaller, the longer the swimming distance. As both male and female athletes tend to compete more and more vigorously within their groups, the gap between the gold medallist and the last finisher in the final is constantly decreasing, which provides significant evidence that this sport discipline continues to develop.

Keywords

  • swimming
  • world records
  • rate of improvement
  • performance
Open Access

Analysis on the Time and Frequency Domains of the Acceleration in Front Crawl Stroke

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 109 - 120

Abstract

Analysis on the Time and Frequency Domains of the Acceleration in Front Crawl Stroke

The swimming involves accelerations and decelerations in the swimmer's body. Thus, the main objective of this study is to make a temporal and frequency analysis of the acceleration in front crawl swimming, regarding the gender and the performance. The sample was composed by 31 male swimmers (15 of high-level and 16 of low-level) and 20 female swimmers (11 of high-level and 9 of low-level). The acceleration was registered from the third complete cycle during eight seconds in a 25 meters maximum velocity test. A position transducer (200Hz) was used to collect the data, and it was synchronized to an aquatic camera (25Hz). The acceleration in the temporal (root mean square, minimum and maximum of the acceleration) and frequency (power peak, power peak frequency and spectral area) domains was calculated with Fourier analysis, as well as the velocity and the spectrums distribution in function to present one or more main peaks (type 1 and type 2). A one-way ANOVA was used to establish differences between gender and performance. Results show differences between genders in all the temporal domain variables (p<0.05) and only the Spectral Area (SA) in the frequency domain (p<0.05). Between gender and performance, only the Root Mean Square (RMS) showed differences in the performance of the male swimmers (p<0.05) and in the higher level swimmers, the Maximum (Max) and the Power Peak (PP) of the acceleration showed differences between both genders (p<0.05). These results confirms the importance of knowing the RMS to determine the efficiency of the swimmers regarding gender and performance level

Keywords

  • swimming
  • Root Mean Square
  • power peak
  • power peak frequency
  • spectrum area
Open Access

Time to Exhaustion at the VO2max Velocity in Swimming: A Review

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 121 - 134

Abstract

Time to Exhaustion at the VO<sub>2</sub>max Velocity in Swimming: A Review

The aim of this study was to present a review on the time to exhaustion at the minimum swimming velocity corresponding to maximal oxygen consumption (TLim-vVO2max). This parameter is critical both for the aerobic power and the lactate tolerance bioenergetical training intensity zones, being fundamental to characterize it, and to point out its main determinants. The few number of studies conducted in this topic observed that swimmers were able to maintain an exercise intensity corresponding to maximal aerobic power during 215 to 260 s (elite swimmers), 230 to 260 s (high level swimmers) and 310 to 325 s (low level swimmers), and no differences between genders were reported. TLim-vVO2max main bioenergetic and functional determinants were swimming economy and VO2 slow component (direct relationship), and vVO2max, velocity at anaerobic threshold and blood lactate production (inverse relationship); when more homogeneous groups of swimmers were analysed, the inverse correlation value between TLim-vVO2max and vVO2max was not so evident. In general, TLim-vVO2max was not related to VO2max. TLim-vVO2max seems also to be influenced by stroking parameters, with a direct relationship to stroke length and stroke index, and an inverse correlation with stroke rate. Assessing TLim-vVO2max, together with the anaerobic threshold and the biomechanical general parameters, will allow a larger spectrum of testing protocols application, helping to build more objective and efficient training programs.

Keywords

  • bioenergetics
  • biomechanics
  • aerobic power
  • time limit
  • training
Open Access

The Reliability, Validity and Applicability of Two Sport-Specific Power Tests in Synchronized Swimming

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 135 - 145

Abstract

The Reliability, Validity and Applicability of Two Sport-Specific Power Tests in Synchronized Swimming

Sport-specific tests are rarely investigated in synchronized swimming (synchro). The aim of this research was to study the reliability and the validity of two sport-specific tests that are based on synchro elements, namely, the Barracuda thrust ("Barracuda") and the Boost. The Barracuda is a move in which the swimmer begins in the back pike position (head down with the legs perpendicular to the surface of the water) and then moves the legs and hips rapidly upward, unrolling the body to obtain a maximal vertical position above the surface of the water. The Boost occurs when the swimmer rises rapidly out of the water, head first, to bring as much of the body as possible above the surface of the water. Both patterns are considered power moves and are therefore theoretically related to explosive strength. This study involved 22 female competitive synchro swimmers aged 16-18 years. The variables examined included performance on the Barracuda, Boost and countermovement jump and anthropometric measures (body height, body weight and body composition). Statistical analyses showed appropriate reliability for all tests, with no systematic bias between trials. A factor analysis calculated for the Barracuda, Boost and countermovement jump revealed one significant factor based on the Guttmann-Kaiser criterion with all three tests significantly projected. The structure of the significant factor did not change if the results for the Boost and Barracuda were normalized for body height. The Boost and Barracuda, but not the countermovement jump, were significantly correlated with the competitive achievements of the swimmers. In conclusion, the Boost and Barracuda are reliable and valid measures of the explosive strength of synchronized swimmers and are significantly related to competitive achievement.

Keywords

  • test construction
  • field testing
  • factor analysis
  • synchro
Open Access

A Comparison of the Physiological Responses to Underwater Arm Cranking and Breath Holding Between Synchronized Swimmers and Breath Holding Untrained Women

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 147 - 156

Abstract

A Comparison of the Physiological Responses to Underwater Arm Cranking and Breath Holding Between Synchronized Swimmers and Breath Holding Untrained Women

Exercise and breath holding in the water such as that performed in the sport of synchronized swimming may evoke the physiological consequences of the diving response. The purpose of this study was to investigate the physiological responses of breath holding during underwater arm cranking in synchronized swimmers who are trained in breath holding and compare these responses to untrained women. Each participant performed 6 breath holding periods in the water (2 × 10s, 2 × 20s and 2 × 25s) with 2 minutes of normal breathing in between, in either an ascending or descending order while performing arm crank exercise. The intensity of arm crank exercise was set below the individual ventilatory threshold. Both synchronized swimmers and controls were matched on sitting height and then randomly divided into 2 groups: one group started breath holding with the longest (25s) breath holding periods while the other group began breath holding with the shortest (10s) breath holding periods. The synchronized swimmers experienced a significant decrease in heart rate while breath holding for 20 and 25s but the changes in heart rate for the control group was not consistent between subgroups. Full recovery from breath holding was identified for minute ventilation after 25s of recovery from breath holding for all groups. Results suggest synchronized swimmers exhibited a better adaptation to breath holding while exercising underwater.

Keywords

  • water immersion
  • heart rate
  • oxygen consumption
  • ventilation
Open Access

General Anthropometric and Specific Physical Fitness Profile of High-Level Junior Water Polo Players

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 157 - 165

Abstract

General Anthropometric and Specific Physical Fitness Profile of High-Level Junior Water Polo Players

The aim of this study was to investigate the status and playing position differences in anthropometric measures and specific physical fitness in high-level junior water polo players.

The sample of subjects comprised 110 water polo players (17 to 18 years of age), including one of the world's best national junior teams for 2010. The subjects were divided according to their playing positions into: Centers (N = 16), Wings (N = 28), perimeter players (Drivers; N = 25), Points (N = 19), and Goalkeepers (N = 18). The variables included body height, body weight, body mass index, arm span, triceps- and subscapular-skinfold. Specific physical fitness tests comprised: four swimming tests, namely: 25m, 100m, 400m and a specific anaerobic 4×50m test (average result achieved in four 50m sprints with a 30 sec pause), vertical body jump (JUMP; maximal vertical jump from the water starting from a water polo defensive position) and a dynamometric power achieved in front crawl swimming (DYN).

ANOVA with post-hoc comparison revealed significant differences between positions for most of the anthropometrics, noting that the Centers were the heaviest and had the highest BMI and subscapular skinfold. The Points achieved the best results in most of the swimming capacities and JUMP test. No significant group differences were found for the 100m and 4×50m tests. The Goalkeepers achieved the lowest results for DYN.

Given the representativeness of the sample of subjects, the results of this study allow specific insights into the physical fitness and anthropometric features of high-level junior water polo players and allow coaches to design a specific training program aimed at achieving the physical fitness results presented for each playing position.

Keywords

  • morphology
  • sport-specific test
  • reliability
  • water sports
Open Access

The Effect of Aquatic Intervention on the Gross Motor Function and Aquatic Skills in Children with Cerebral Palsy

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 167 - 174

Abstract

The Effect of Aquatic Intervention on the Gross Motor Function and Aquatic Skills in Children with Cerebral Palsy

The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of an aquatic intervention on the gross motor function and aquatic skills of children with cerebral palsy (CP). Twenty-nine children with CP, aged 5 to 14, were recruited. Fourteen children completed an aquatic intervention (EG), and 13 children served as controls (CG). Two participants dropped out due to events (illness) unrelated to the intervention. The aquatic intervention lasted 6 weeks (2 sessions per week at 55 minutes per session) with a follow-up period of 3 weeks. The outcome measures were the Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) for motor function and the Water Orientation Test Alyn 2 (WOTA 2) for aquatic skills assessment. A significant improvement was observed in the secondary assessment of GMFM and WOTA 2. In contrast to the aquatic skills improvement, the GMFM change was not maintained at follow-up. Our results indicate that children with CP can improve gross motor function on dry land and aquatic skills with a 6-week water intervention. The intervention period was too short for sustainable improvement in dry-land motor skills after intervention (followup), but time was sufficient to achieve sustainable improvements in aquatic skills.

Keywords

  • aquatherapy
  • experiment
  • follow up
  • pediatrics
Open Access

Socio-Demographic Determinants of Participation in Swimming Amongst Working Residents of Warsaw

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 175 - 183

Abstract

Socio-Demographic Determinants of Participation in Swimming Amongst Working Residents of Warsaw

The aim of research is to assess the correlation between socio-demographic factors and swimming activity among the working population of Warsaw. The questionnaire survey included 4405 randomly selected residents of Warsaw. The correlation between the swimming activity and the variables characterizing the socio-demographic structure of the respondents were assessed by log-linear modelling. The significance of the impact of factors included in the analysis was determined using the chi-square test. Thirty-five per cent of the respondents declared recreational swimming. Gender, age, BMI, education, occupation, and income were significantly related to the swimming activity. Women (33%) - compared to men (38%) - were almost 1.2 times less likely to participate in swimming; similarly, overweight people (33%, OR = 0.90) and obese people (33%, OR = 0.92). People from Warsaw from 20-29 years (43%), with higher education (40%), incomes above the national average (40%), and representing the profession of an actor (52%), swam relatively more often. The results of the study might help in developing marketing plans and market segmentation strategies, as well as in forecasting the development trends of the leisure activity.

Keywords

  • swimming activity
  • socio-demographic determinants
  • Warsaw
Open Access

Effects of Aquatic and Dry Land Resistance Training Devices on Body Composition and Physical Capacity in Postmenopausal Women

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 185 - 195

Abstract

Effects of Aquatic and Dry Land Resistance Training Devices on Body Composition and Physical Capacity in Postmenopausal Women

To determine the effects of a supervised strength training program on body composition and physical capacity of older women using three different devices: weight machines, elastic bands, and aquatic devices that increase drag forces (ADIDF). Four groups were formed: control group, weight machine group (WMG), elastic band group (EBG) and a group that used ADIDF (ADIDFG). Body composition and physical capacity were assessed before and after the intervention period. The ADIDFG showed improvements in fat mass (FM), fat-free mass of the left arm (FFM-LA) and right arm (FFM-RA), knee push-up test (KPT), squat test (ST) and crunch test (CT) (p <0.05). Individuals in the EBG and WMG also improved their FM, fat free mass (FFM), FFM-LA, FFM-RA, KPU, ST and CT. ADIDF training improves body composition and physical capacity of postmenopausal women as does performing land-based training programs.

Keywords

  • aquatic training
  • weight machines
  • elastic bands
  • fitness
Open Access

The Role of Training in the Development of Adaptive Mechanisms in Freedivers

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 197 - 210

Abstract

The Role of Training in the Development of Adaptive Mechanisms in Freedivers

Freediving is a sport in which athletes aim to achieve the longest or the deepest breath-hold dive. Divers are at risk of gradually increasing hypoxia and hypercapnia due to a long time spent underwater and additionally of increasing hyperoxia while depth diving. Exceeding the limits of hypoxia endurance leads to loss of consciousness or even to death whithout immediate first aid. Often enhanced world records indicate the ability to shape specific to the discipline adaptive mechanisms of cardio-pulmonary system which are individually conditioned. During stay underwater heartbeats decelerating called bradycardia, increase in blood pressure, peripheral blood vessels narrowing and blood centralization in freediver's organism. These mechanisms enhance blood oxygen management as well as transporting it first of all to essential for survival organs, i.e. brain and heart. These mechanisms are supported by spleen and adrenal glands hormonal reactions.

Keywords

  • freediving
  • breath-hold
  • training
  • adaptive mechanisms
Open Access

Deep and Shallow Water Effects on Developing Preschoolers' Aquatic Skills

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 211 - 219

Abstract

Deep and Shallow Water Effects on Developing Preschoolers' Aquatic Skills

The aim of the study was to assess deep and shallow water teaching methods in swimming lessons for preschool children and identify variations in the basic aquatic skills acquired. The study sample included 32 swimming instructors (16 from deep water programs and 16 from shallow water programs) and 98 preschool children (50 from deep water swimming pool and 48 from shallow water swimming pool). The children were also studied regarding their previous experience in swimming (6, 12 and 18 months or practice). Chi-Square test and Fisher's exact test were used to compare the teaching methodology. A discriminant analysis was conducted with Λ wilk's method to predict under what conditions students are better or worse (aquatic competence).

Results suggest that regardless of the non-significant variations found in teaching methods, the water depth can affect aquatic skill acquisition - shallow water lessons seem to impose greater water competence particularly after 6 months of practice. The discriminant function revealed a significant association between groups and all predictors for 6 months of swimming practice (p<0.001). Body position in gliding and leg displacements were the main predictors. For 12 and 18 months of practice, the discriminant function do not revealed any significant association between groups. As a conclusion, it seems that the teaching methodology of aquatic readiness based on deep and shallow water programs for preschoolers is not significantly different. However, shallow water lessons could be preferable for the development of basic aquatic skills.

Keywords

  • aquatic skills
  • shallow water
  • deep water
  • teaching methods
  • preschoolers
Open Access

Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry to Measure the Effects of a Thirteen-Week Moderate to Vigorous Aquatic Exercise and Nutritional Education Intervention on Percent Body Fat in Adults with Intellectual Disabilities from Group Home Settings

Published Online: 30 May 2012
Page range: 221 - 229

Abstract

Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry to Measure the Effects of a Thirteen-Week Moderate to Vigorous Aquatic Exercise and Nutritional Education Intervention on Percent Body Fat in Adults with Intellectual Disabilities from Group Home Settings

People with intellectual disability are more likely to be obese and extremely obese than people without intellectual disability with rates remaining elevated among adults, women and individuals living in community settings. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry measured the effects of a 13-week aquatic exercise and nutrition intervention on percent body fat in eight adults with intellectual disabilities (aged 41.0 ± 13.7 yrs) of varying fat levels (15%-39%) from two group homes. A moderate to vigorous aquatic exercise program lasted for the duration of 13 weeks with three, one-hour sessions held at a 25m pool each week. Nutritional assistants educated participants as to the importance of food choice and portion size. A two-tailed Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-ranks test determined the impact of the combined intervention on body fat percentage and BMI at pre and post test. Median body fat percentage (0.8 %) and BMI (0.3 kg/m2) decreased following the exercise intervention, but neither were statistically significant, p = .11 and p = .55, respectively. The combined intervention was ineffective at reducing percent body fat in adults with intellectual disability according to dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. These results are in agreement with findings from exercise alone interventions and suggest that more stringent nutritional guidelines are needed for this population and especially for individuals living in group home settings. The study did show that adults with intellectual disability may participate in moderate to vigorous physical activity when given the opportunity.

Keywords

  • physical activity
  • diet
  • body composition
  • swimming
  • obesity

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