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Special Issue "Applied Physiology and Exercise Testing in Endurance and Ultra-Endurance Sports"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (28 February 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Beat Knechtle
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Dr. Caio Victor Sousa
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Health Sciences, Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Performance in endurance and ultra-endurance sports has been related to physiological characteristics such as aerobic capacity, body composition, muscle strength and flexibility. Exercise testing of these parameters provides valuable training tools to develop optimal exercise programs. Thus, endurance and ultra-endurance athletes should use appropriate testing methods to monitor their training. The aim of “Applied physiology and exercise testing in endurance and ultra-endurance sports” is to collect original research and review articles in the following topics:

  • Physiological profile of athletes
  • The role of sex, age and performance level
  • Comparison between exercise testing methods
  • Prediction of performance from exercise testing
  • Clinical exercise testing
  • Novel exercise testing methods

Prof. Dr. Beat Knechtle
Dr. Pantelis T. Nikolaidis
Dr. Caio Victor Sousa
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Article
Time to Exhaustion at the Respiratory Compensation Point in Recreational Cyclists
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6352; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176352 - 31 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1215
Abstract
The time to exhaustion (tlim) at the respiratory compensation point (RCP) and whether a physiological steady state is observed at this workload remains unknown. Thus, this study analyzed tlim at the power output eliciting the RCP (tlim at RCP), [...] Read more.
The time to exhaustion (tlim) at the respiratory compensation point (RCP) and whether a physiological steady state is observed at this workload remains unknown. Thus, this study analyzed tlim at the power output eliciting the RCP (tlim at RCP), the oxygen uptake (VO2) response to this effort, and the influence of endurance fitness. Sixty male recreational cyclists (peak oxygen uptake [VO2peak] 40–60 mL∙kg∙min−1) performed an incremental test to determine the RCP, VO2peak, and maximal aerobic power (MAP). They also performed constant-load tests to determine the tlim at RCP and tlim at MAP. Participants were divided based on their VO2peak into a low-performance group (LP, n = 30) and a high-performance group (HP, n = 30). The tlim at RCP averaged 20 min 32 s ± 5 min 42 s, with a high between-subject variability (coefficient of variation 28%) but with no differences between groups (p = 0.788, effect size = 0.06). No consistent relationships were found between the tlim at RCP and the different fitness markers analyzed (RCP, power output (PO) at RCP, VO2peak, MAP, or tlim at MAP; all p > 0.05). VO2 remained steady overall during the tlim test, although a VO2 slow component (i.e., an increase in VO2 >200 mL·min−1 from the third min to the end of the tests) was present in 33% and 40% of the participants in HP and LP, respectively. In summary, the PO at RCP could be maintained for about 20 min. However, there was a high between-subject variability in both the tlim and in the VO2 response to this effort that seemed to be independent of fitness level, which raises concerns on the suitability of this test for fitness assessment. Full article
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Article
Validity and Reliability of Isometric-Bench for Knee Isometric Assessment
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4326; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17124326 - 17 Jun 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1092
Abstract
There is a strong need for a new, probably cheaper, smaller, and more portable isometric dynamometer. With this aim, we investigated the concurrent validity and reliability of a low-cost portable dynamometer to measure the isometric strength of the lower limb. Seventeen young participants [...] Read more.
There is a strong need for a new, probably cheaper, smaller, and more portable isometric dynamometer. With this aim, we investigated the concurrent validity and reliability of a low-cost portable dynamometer to measure the isometric strength of the lower limb. Seventeen young participants (age 16.47 ± 0.51 years) were randomly assessed on three different days for knee flexion and extension isometric forces with two different devices: a commonly used isokinetic dynamometer (ISOC) and a portable isometric dynamometer prototype (ISOM). No significant differences were observed between the ISOC and the ISOM (all comparisons p > 0.05). Test–retest comparison showed the ISOM to have high reliability (ICC 0.879–0.990). This study showed that measurements with the ISOM could be performed without systematic bias and with high reliability. The ISOM is a device that is able to assess knee isometric strength with excellent concurrent validity and reliability. Full article
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Review

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Review
Relationship of Carbohydrate Intake during a Single-Stage One-Day Ultra-Trail Race with Fatigue Outcomes and Gastrointestinal Problems: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(11), 5737; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18115737 - 27 May 2021
Viewed by 2374
Abstract
Due to the high metabolic and physical demands in single-stage one-day ultra-trail (SOUT) races, athletes should be properly prepared in both physical and nutritional aspects in order to delay fatigue and avoid associated difficulties. However, high carbohydrate (CHO) intake would seem to increase [...] Read more.
Due to the high metabolic and physical demands in single-stage one-day ultra-trail (SOUT) races, athletes should be properly prepared in both physical and nutritional aspects in order to delay fatigue and avoid associated difficulties. However, high carbohydrate (CHO) intake would seem to increase gastrointestinal (GI) problems. The main purpose of this systematic review was to evaluate CHO intake during SOUT events as well as its relationship with fatigue (in terms of internal exercise load, exercise-induced muscle damage (EIMD) and post-exercise recovery) and GI problems. A structured search was carried out in accordance with PRISMA guidelines in the following: Web of Science, Cochrane Library and Scopus databases up to 16 March 2021. After conducting the search and applying the inclusion/exclusion criteria, eight articles in total were included in this systematic review, in all of which CHO intake involved gels, energy bars and sports drinks. Two studies associated higher CHO consumption (120 g/h) with an improvement in internal exercise load. Likewise, these studies observed that SOUT runners whose intake was 120 g/h could benefit by limiting the EIMD observed by CK (creatine kinase), LDH (lactate dehydrogenase) and GOT (aspartate aminotransferase), and also improve recovery of high intensity running capacity 24 h after a trail marathon. In six studies, athletes had GI symptoms between 65–82%. In summary, most of the runners did not meet CHO intake standard recommendations for SOUT events (90 g/h), while athletes who consumed more CHO experienced a reduction in internal exercise load, limited EIMD and improvement in post-exercise recovery. Conversely, the GI symptoms were recurrent in SOUT athletes depending on altitude, environmental conditions and running speed. Therefore, a high CHO intake during SOUT events is important to delay fatigue and avoid GI complications, and to ensure high intake, it is necessary to implement intestinal training protocols. Full article
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Other

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Brief Report
The Reciprocal Association between Fitness Indicators and Sleep Quality in the Context of Recent Sport Injury
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4810; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17134810 - 03 Jul 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1178
Abstract
The purpose of the study is to investigate whether the oxygen uptake and heart rate at rest, in Greek professional soccer players, are affected by recent injuries, as well as how sleep quality is affected. Forty-two male professional soccer players were included in [...] Read more.
The purpose of the study is to investigate whether the oxygen uptake and heart rate at rest, in Greek professional soccer players, are affected by recent injuries, as well as how sleep quality is affected. Forty-two male professional soccer players were included in the study and divided into two groups: injurygroup (n = 22, age: 21.6 ± 5.4 years, body fat: 11.0 ± 3.9%, total body water: 64.0 ± 2.5%) and no-injurygroup (n = 20, age: 24.2 ± 5.6 years, body fat: 10.1 ± 2.8%, total body water: 64.3 ± 1.8%). The oxygen uptake at rest (VO2resting, mL/min/kg) and heart rate (HR, bpm) were recorded in the upright position for 3 min, and the predicted values were calculated. One hour before, the athletes answered the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) questionnaire. The results showed a difference between groups (injurygroup vs. no-injurygroup) in VO2resting (7.5 ± 1.4 vs. 5.5 ± 1.2 mL/min/kg, p < 0.001) and percent of predicted values (92.5 ± 17.2 vs. 68.3 ± 14.6%, p < 0.001) and HR, such as beats per min (100.6 ± 12.8 vs. 93.1 ± 4.6 bpm, p = 0.001), percent of predicted values (50.7 ± 6.4 vs. 47.6 ± 2.8%, p = 0.003) and sleep quality score (PSQI: 4.9 ± 2.2 vs. 3.1 ± 0.9, p = 0.005). Anthropometric characteristics were not different between groups. Oxygen consumption and heart rate at rest are affected by the systemic adaptations due to injury. These pathophysiological changes probably relate to increased blood flow in an attempt to restore the injury area. Full article
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