Applied Sports Science newsletter – April 2, 2020

Applied Sports Science news articles, blog posts and research papers for April 2, 2020


How Eliud Kipchoge Broke Running’s Mythic Barrier

GQ, Knox Robinson from

It was one of sport’s great question marks: Is it humanly possible to run 26.2 miles in under two hours? Then Eliud Kipchoge did it. What followed was international fame—and plenty of controversy. So we flew to Kipchoge’s ultra-rarefied Kenyan training ground to meet the man who pulled off the impossible.

Tua Tagovailoa feels ‘100 percent,’ says he could play as rookie

ESPN College Football, Alex Scarborough from

Things are steadily returning to normal for former Alabama quarterback and projected top-10 draft pick Tua Tagovailoa, who went through four months of rehab to repair a broken hip and recently returned to the field to run through drills and throw a football again.

“I’d say I’m 100 percent right now,” Tagovailoa said during an interview on SportsCenter. “I’m just ready to go.”

How a Teenage Winger Turned Into One of the Premier League’s Best Fullbacks

Ryan O'Hanlon, No Grass in the Clouds newsletter from

… Since [Mikel] Arteta took over, seven players aged 23 and under have played more than 200 domestic minutes. The leader among the kids is also the youngest of the bunch. Under his new manager, only the starting keeper and the team’s de facto veteran core (David Luiz, Granit Xhaka, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and Mesut Ozil) have played more than Bakayo Saka. Among players with at least 600 league minutes this season, only club-record signing Nicolas Pepe is assisting at a higher rate (actual or expected) or completing more dribbles. Not bad for a winger-turned fullback who only turned 18 in September, huh?

Saka came up the youth ranks as an attacker — and that might still be his best position — but injuries and inconsistency ahead of him on the depth chart forced him into the lineup as a left back. Given that, you might expect some attacking brilliance coupled with lots of defensive lapses, but it’s almost been the opposite.

Buffalo Bills WR Isaiah McKenzie explains how team is handling COVID-19 pandemic, Matt Parrino from

… McKenzie, who revealed that the Bills are planning their first positional meetings via video conference calls on Wednesday, said the most important practice for all parties involved right now is communication.

“I feel like everybody (just needs to) communicate and try to be there for one another the best way you can,” said McKenzie, who’s usual quirky personality was on full display as he appeared on the call wearing a sleeveless blue and red team T-shirt and a Mickey Mouse Disney sombrero. “Communication is the big key for everything right now for coaches, players to families and things like that.”

Steph Curry, NBA world facing harsh reality of coronavirus lockdown

NBC Sports Philadelphia, Tom Haberstroh from

Brandon Payne is looking at RV rentals. Daily rates, weekly rates — anything to help him get through the NBA’s COVID-19 hiatus.

Since 2011, Payne has been Stephen Curry’s personal trainer and coach for Curry’s Underrated international tour, staying by the star’s side and coaching him through the highs and lows of his storied career. When Payne can’t be with Curry in person, the 40-year-old father of two sons, Carson, 12, and Collin, 9, uses text messages to stay connected from across the country.

Payne doesn’t know when he’s going to be with Curry again. Payne’s company, Accelerate Basketball, is based in the Charlotte suburbs of Fort Mill, S.C., where Payne and his family live, just outside where Curry grew up and attended college at Davidson. Curry is currently following California’s stay-at-home order at his Bay Area home, a mandate that will likely last beyond April, according to California governor Gavin Newsom.

Teams preparing for virtual offseason programs

NBC Sports, ProFootballTalk, Charean Williams from

… Luckily, in my case and a good bit of the other coaches’ cases, we experienced the 2011 lockout,” Broncos coach Vic Fangio said Tuesday in a conference call with Broncos reporters. “There is some precedent for this. The only difference being that the players right now are struggling at times to find a place to work out because most of the gyms and places where they would go for that have been closed down.

When Baseball Comes Back, How Much Time Will Pitchers Need?

FiveThirtyEight, Travis Sawchik from

When and if Major League Baseball returns in 2020, the sport faces a particular challenge in restarting from the suspension of play caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. All players will require something of a second spring training, but one player position needs even more time to prepare: pitcher.

To get their arms in shape for baseball’s opening day, which would have been today, March 26, most pitchers reported to their teams’ spring training camps on Feb. 12, giving them what would have been 43 days of preparation. It’s hard to know when the 2020 season will start for sure — some scenarios would have the regular season begin in June or July. But to have an as-early-as-possible start date and play as many games as possible in what could be the shortest season in history,1 could MLB safely prepare its pitchers with a truncated training schedule?

How Syracuse conditioning coach Ryan Cabiles is staying in touch with the SU basketball players, Mike Waters from

… [Ryan] Cabiles, SU’s strength and conditioning coach, is like many Americans these days; working from home and helping his two kids; ages 11 and 8, keep up with their school work.

He has tried to keep in touch with each of the Syracuse players as they’ve returned to their homes or gone to stay with friends.

“My very first concern is that they are healthy and safe and they’re taking care of themselves and their families,’’ Cabiles said. “I don’t want them to put additional pressure on our medical teams and nurses wherever they’re at. That’s first and foremost

Bucks try to make sure they’re ready whenever season resumes

Associated Press, Steve Megargee from

… “We believe that we’re going to play,” Horst said Wednesday in a conference call. “Everything that we’re doing every day in our communications, in our preparations, everything we talk about is being prepared to play at some point, finish out the season and have a resumption.”

That’s why Milwaukee coach Mike Budenholzer has spent part of this hiatus making sure the Bucks don’t lose their edge whenever they do get back on the floor.

He’s been studying the Orlando Magic and Brooklyn Nets — the Bucks’ two most likely first-round playoff foes — as well as other Eastern Conference teams Milwaukee could see later in the postseason. He’s tried to learn from his experiences as a San Antonio Spurs assistant coach during the NBA’s most recent work stoppages.

IoT-based scanner measures body temps

FierceElectronics, Spencer Chin from

MachineSense is releasing a beta version of FeverSense, a low-cost, infrared temperature scanning system that can be installed in the form of a gate or retrofitted to be installed at any entrance location to automatically scan human body temperature. The high-speed scanner doesn’t require human intervention to hold a temperature gun allowing for proper social distancing and, therefore making its operation safer and less expensive.

Designed to be installed in a gate or retrofitted into an existing machine, the scanner records the temperature of each individual as they come close to the system. The system provides an alert if an elevated body temperature has been detected, allowing the person to be identified and isolated effectively. Further, the system is aided with a mobile app for self-registration of people who have been detected with an elevated temperature.

Methods may matter in injury surveillance: “how” may be more important than “what, when or why”. – PubMed – NCBI

Biology of Sport journal from

To examine if and how adjustments in injury surveillance recording methodology may have influenced injury rates. Injury and exposure data were collected among professional male players from the Qatar Stars League from the 2008-2009 season to the 2017-2018 season. There have been four iterations of our data collection methods. In the first five seasons, participation in the programme was voluntary. For seasons 6-7, additional dedicated researchers were tasked with contacting the medical teams every month. At the start of season 8, an electronic recording method was instituted. In the final two seasons, injury surveillance participation was further boosted by reinforced encouragement from institutional management. Overall injury incidence increased from season 5 to season 8. Severe injuries have fallen steadily, but slightly over the ten seasons, whereas mild injuries increased dramatically from seasons 5 to 8. The current data suggest that along with the standard metrics (e.g. injury incidence, injury burden) we also need to clearly report the methods by which data were collected and verified in as much detail as possible. We suggest that sports medicine journals should adopt minimum reporting standards and perhaps checklists could be a useful step forward.

How Many Athletes Just Lost Their Shot At Olympic Glory?

FiveThirtyEight, Neil Paine from

… As much as Olympic fixtures such as Michael Phelps and Allyson Felix stand out in our memories, the typical Olympian gets only one shot at glory. So this upheaval could have a major effect on who gets to excel on the global stage — and who even gets to participate.

According to data collected by historian Bill Mallon and a team of tireless Olympic researchers, about 74 percent of all Summer Olympians participated in just one Olympics.1 By comparison, 19 percent appeared twice, 6 percent appeared in three games and a shade under 2 percent appeared in four or more. So even for world-class athletes, the opportunity for this kind of greatness is so fleeting that the majority will see only a single, solitary chance at it.

I just spent the last few hours gaming out w/ a colleague how a quarantined @NBA playoffs (like in Vegas) could safely happen.

Twitter, Zachary Binney from

It’s a fascinating epi problem. I’d almost pay *them* to let me help solve it…

…but I think I’ve settled on it being practically impossible? [thread]

NFL Draft 2020: Agents share how coronavirus changes impact prospects

NBC Sports Bay Area, Jennifer Lee Chan from

… Brett Tessler, who represents 49ers running back Raheem Mostert, believes players who weren’t able to attend or weren’t invited to the combine are at a disadvantage across the board. An off-the-radar player won’t have the chance to catch a scout or coach’s eye at a local pro day and jump up a team’s draft board.

“For most non-combine guys, it’s going to put everybody at an equal disadvantage,” Tessler told NBC Sports Bay Area. “Teams will rely more on the spring testing numbers that they got prior to this season.

“But, the biggest disadvantage for non-combine guys trying to get drafted is the lack of being brought in for pre-draft visits, where the medical staffs can do all the background work on these guys that they need to do.”

MLB considering two doubleheaders a week in shortened season

SB Nation, Beyond the Boxscore blog, Kenny Kelly from

Is there a way to play weekly doubleheaders without running the players into the ground?

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