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Review

The Role of Nationality in Ultra-Endurance Sports: The Paradigm of Cross-Country Skiing and Long-Distance Running

1
Medbase St. Gallen Am Vadianplatz, 9001 St. Gallen, Switzerland
2
Institute of Primary Care, University of Zurich, 8091 Zurich, Switzerland
3
Exercise Physiology Laboratory, 18450 Nikaia, Greece
4
School of Health and Caring Sciences, University of West Attica, 12243 Athens, Greece
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(7), 2543; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17072543
Received: 19 March 2020 / Revised: 1 April 2020 / Accepted: 5 April 2020 / Published: 8 April 2020
Although the variation of performance by nationality in endurance sports such as marathon has been well studied, little information exists so far on the role of nationality on performance in ultra-endurance sports. The aim of the present study was to review the role of nationality on cross-country skiing and ultra-endurance running. Scopus and PubMed were searched using the syntax “nationality AND (ultra-endurance OR ultra-marathon OR cross-country skiing) in 1/4/2020. This search identified 17 articles, whose references were further examined for relevant literature. It was observed that Russian athletes dominated ultra-endurance running and cross-country skiing races. It was shown that these races were in other countries, where it was assumed that only the best Russians competed. Potential explanations could be misuse of performance enhancing substances, historical, climate-geographical and psychophysiological (e.g., combination of genetic and social factors). In summary, recent studies found a dominance of Russian athletes in specific races (i.e., ‘Comrades Marathon’, ‘Vasaloppet’, and ‘Engadin Ski Marathon’) and disciplines (i.e., ultra-marathon running, cross-country skiing) over a period of several decades. Future studies are need to investigate other events and other sport disciplines to confirm this Russian dominance. View Full-Text
Keywords: culture; endurance; genetics; nationality; performance; gender culture; endurance; genetics; nationality; performance; gender
MDPI and ACS Style

Knechtle, B.; Rosemann, T.; Nikolaidis, P.T. The Role of Nationality in Ultra-Endurance Sports: The Paradigm of Cross-Country Skiing and Long-Distance Running. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 2543. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17072543

AMA Style

Knechtle B, Rosemann T, Nikolaidis PT. The Role of Nationality in Ultra-Endurance Sports: The Paradigm of Cross-Country Skiing and Long-Distance Running. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(7):2543. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17072543

Chicago/Turabian Style

Knechtle, Beat, Thomas Rosemann, and Pantelis T. Nikolaidis 2020. "The Role of Nationality in Ultra-Endurance Sports: The Paradigm of Cross-Country Skiing and Long-Distance Running" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 7: 2543. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17072543

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