Applied Sports Science newsletter – October 16, 2019

Applied Sports Science news articles, blog posts and research papers for October 16, 2019


Gerardo Martino quietly bringing through next wave of young talent for Mexico

ESPN FC from

Mexico manager Gerardo Martino won’t admit to promoting a youth revolution within his squad, but he doesn’t need to say a word. In sculpting his team for the CONCACAF Nations League, El Tri’s manager is quietly pushing for a much-needed infusion of young talent.

Mexico’s roster for the latest round of games includes 15 players with five or fewer national team caps, two of whom are enjoying their first call-ups. Martino’s management can make it easy to miss the absences of stalwarts such as goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa, striker Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and midfielders Marco Fabian and Miguel Layun. Taking their place instead, as they have done in recent FIFA dates, are names such as Jose Hernandez, Jose Juan Macias, Cristian Calderon, Alan Mozo and Francisco Cordova.


U.S. players lack ‘passion and love’ – Earthquakes coach Matias Almeyda

ESPN FC, Tom Marshall from

San Jose Earthquakes coach and former Argentina international Matias Almeyda warned that players from the United States need to play like every match matters and put more passion into their game.


A Tale of Two Marathon Records and Nike’s Magic Shoes

Outside Online, Alex Hutchinson from

The two-hour barrier and the women’s marathon world record both fell this weekend. The history makers, Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei, have one obvious thing in common.


Franchise players? NBA sophomore class full of rising stars

Associated Press, David Brandt from

Deandre Ayton strolled around the practice court, talking and laughing with coaches and teammates following a two-hour workout with the Phoenix Suns.

It is clear he is comfortable operating in lofty surroundings, even on a morning in the mountains of Flagstaff, despite a sign on the wall that warned of the dangers of physical exertion at 7,000 feet of altitude.

“What’s that, 7,000? Nah, I need more like 15. That was pretty light,” Ayton quipped. “I don’t have that little chest burn feeling when you’re at such a high altitude. It was fun.”


How Minnesota United rose from doormat to MLS Cup contender

ESPN FC, Austin Lindberg from

… The Loons’ rise from doormat to 16-1 candidates to lift MLS Cup — the sixth-best odds in the 14-team playoff field — can be attributed to several factors. They’ve used MLS’ roster rules to their fullest, whether it was adding Designated Player Jan Gregus (tied for seventh in the league with 12 assists) from the international market, claiming Ozzie Alonso off waivers or selecting Rookie of the Year finalist Hassani Dotson in the SuperDraft.

The quality of the club’s leadership has mirrored this improvement.

In three seasons of MLS play, it’s already seen eight different players wear the captain’s armband. The revolving-door policy may remind those in the Land of 10,000 Lakes of the state’s last men’s expansion team, the NHL’s Wild, who sewed the “C” on a new player’s sweater every month.


Atlanta president rips USMNT after Robinson injured

NBC Sports, Pro Soccer Talk, Nicholas Mendola from

Atlanta United president Darren Eales is enraged with U.S. Soccer after center back Miles Robinson pulled his hamstring on international duty.

Robinson did not play in Friday’s 7-0 win over Cuba, instead getting injured after the match in a “hard training session.


Behind the scenes: How Georgia volleyball relies on strength, conditioning and recovery for success

University of Georgia, The Red & Black student newspaper, J.C. Gonzalez from

… “It varies [from] athlete to athlete. Everybody has their own routine for feeling better,” Georgia volleyball athletic trainer Jubilee Herrs said. “Ice baths, foam rolling, stretching — it’s all-encompassing when recovering from a hard workout.”

The most common injuries faced by athletes is the ankle sprain, but volleyball also presents its own specific challenges for training staff, given the level and type of movement the sport requires.

“We get a lot of knee [pain], like patellar tendinitis and lower back pain. [Volleyball] puts a lot of torque on the body without a doubt,” Herrs said. “If you look at the swing, all the way through your thoracic spine, you’re getting a ton of torque, and a lot of the blocking tends to be very one-sided because they take off on one leg and land on the other to reach as far as they can, which creates unilateral-sided pain due to overuse.”


Higher, faster, stronger, better … is there no end to what humans can do?

The Guardian, James Tapper from

… record-breaking events such as Kipchoge’s seem increasingly common. Last week Simone Biles became the first female gymnast to win a fifth world all-around title, using two signature moves that no other woman has ever achieved.

Sarah Thomas swam the English channel four times in a row, 134 miles (215km) in open seas in 54 hours. Dalilah Muhammad broke the 400m hurdles world record twice this year and Sifan Hassan did the same for the 5km and one mile events. In men’s athletics, Geoffrey Kamworor is waiting to hear if his half marathon time of 58:01 will be ratified, while Julien Wanders set a new 5km record in February. And don’t forget the nine men’s swimming world records Adam Peaty and others have set this year. So far.

“It is a great feeling to make history in sport after Sir Roger Bannister in 1954,” Kipchoge said afterwards, predicting that others would repeat the feat. “I am the happiest man in the world to be the first human to run under two hours and I can tell people that no human is limited.”

Is he right? Where are the limits of human ability? And how close are we to reaching them?


Transparent graphene wearables monitor signs of health

Physics World, Olivia Voyce from

The use of consumer based health and wellness trackers such as smart watches or smart clothing has the potential to increase physical activity participation. Many of these devices noninvasively track vital health signs by optical detection. However, this technology is limited by the need for rigid materials. To overcome this, Emre Polat et al. have developed a new class of flexible and transparent wearables based on graphene sensitized with semiconducting quantum dots.

The new technology can successfully measure heart rate and oxygen saturation. It also has the potential to measure blood pressure and cardiac output, whilst maintaining its flexible and transparent form. The group has used the approach to develop a plethora of prototype fitness trackers such as a heart-rate monitoring bracelet and a wireless ultraviolet (UV) monitoring patch, which informs the user of their current UV exposure and recommended remaining exposure time via a mobile phone app.


Is it the shoes? A proposal to regulate footwear in road running

BJSM blog, Geoffrey T. Burns and Nicholas Tam from

… The combined advantages of these individual design features are difficult to separate. The midsole foam provides both superior energy return and reduced mass. Is the material structurally feasible on its own, or is the plate necessary to stabilize it? Is the benefit from the plate augmented by the angle it extends through the shoe and therefore only afforded by its thicker midsole? These components are interacting in concert, rendering it difficult to disentangle their advantages.

Thus, selecting parameters for shoe regulation would be troublesome up front and operationally burdensome over time for the IAAF. It would perpetuate technology debates and give rise to myriad convoluted standards rife with historical contradictions. Running shoes are inevitably a blend of materials: midsole foams of different densities, rubber outsoles of varying configurations, and rigid pieces embedded in distinct architectures. Attempts to implement comprehensive rules covering every facet of a shoe’s design is a band-aid approach that is not feasible.


Purdue’s Ray Ewry Sports Engineering Center to be an homage to Olympic star, alumnus

Purdue University News from

Purdue University will create a sports engineering and research center named in honor of a record-setting Olympian and Purdue graduate.

The Ray Ewry Sports Engineering Center was announced Saturday (Oct. 12) during the university’s Homecoming football game. This announcement was made during the grand finale of the university’s 150th anniversary and its Giant Leaps campaign, which focused on asking the big questions and working toward solutions.

The College of Engineering will advance research and learning benefits to athletes and students through the sports engineering center, named for the Boilermaker track and field athlete who won 10 gold medals in four Olympic Games from 1900 and 1908.


We Can’t Even Comprehend the Massive Data Haul We’ll Soon Get From Sensors

Singularity Hub, Peter Diamandis from

… Comprising the first part of tomorrow’s smart environment information-processing pipeline, sensors are the data-gathering apparatus that provide our computers with the information they need to act.

Case Study: The Oura Ring

Not much more than a sleek, black band, the Oura Ring is the most accurate sleep tracker on the market, thanks to its TK sensors.


Exercise stress test results often misinterpreted as bad news

Stanford Medicine, Scope Blog from

Is it dangerous to have high blood pressure while at peak exertion during an exercise test on a treadmill? Stanford researchers set out to answer this question in response to a controversy over how best to interpret the results of common tests used to measure heart health.

Because it’s generally known that high blood pressure is an indicator of poor heart health at rest, it may seem like commonsense that reaching high levels while exercising hard on a treadmill would be bad. In fact, many doctors do consider this a sign of potential heart or blood vessel problems. But, according to the Stanford research, they shouldn’t always.

“Physicians often misinterpret these high blood pressure results from exercise tests,” said Kristofer Hedman, MD, PhD, a former postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University School of Medicine and lead author of a paper on the research published recently in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. Jonathan Myers, MD, clinical professor of cardiovascular medicine at Stanford and director of cardiopulmonary research at Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System, and Francois Haddad, MD, clinical associate professor of cardiovascular medicine, were co-senior authors


‘Standard of Care’ Laws May Not Dissuade Sport Concussion Lawsuits

Twitter, Phil Wagner from

Tough situation BUT it is hard to fault the legal challenges to a standard test that counts how many times a person touches their foot down while balancing…


Premier League Clubs Lost £166 Million In Wages To Injuries Last Season With Manchester City Most Affected

Forbes, James Ayles from

… The research, conducted by football intelligence agency 21st Club and commissioned by Catapult, showed that across the Premier League, injured players cost their clubs an eye-watering £166 million in salary, amounting to 14% of total wage expenditure.

Although the total wages lost to injury in the Premier League was £166 million, last season’s top six finishers-Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester United-accounted for a significant £91.2 million of that.

In fact, the research goes on to show how those clubs in the top six were less affected by injuries than those in the lower reaches of the division. West Ham United were the only team among the top six spenders on injuries that did not achieve a top six finish.


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