PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENTS IN RUNNING ATTRIBUTED TO PHYSIOLOGICAL FACTORS IN BOYS
Unnithan, V.B., Timmons, J. A., Brogan, R. T., Paton, J. Y., & Rowland, T. W. (1996). Submaximal running economy in run-trained pre-pubertal boys. Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, 36, 16-23.
Cardiorespiratory and kinematic differences were assessed at submaximal and maximal intensities in run-trained (N = 15) and non-trained (N = 18) boys.
Two separate (4 x 3 min) submaximal protocols were used for each group with two of the speeds overlapping to facilitate comparisons.
There was no difference between the groups in submaximal running economy at any speed indicating that performance differences would result from training, genetic pre-selection, or developmental differences, but not kinematics. Some physiological differences did exist between the groups at both speeds; VO2max, heart rate, and rating of perceived exertion were lower in the trained group.
Implication. This study showed that training boys to run could cause physiological adaptations to occur which alone would account for performance differences. Although no kinematic differences were revealed, that does not mean it is an area that has no influence. On the contrary, it is an area that, if exploited in coaching and instruction, could produce even further performance differences.
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