Female Sports Science newsletter – September 2, 2018

Female Sports Science news articles, blog posts and research papers for September 2, 2018



Taurasi a ridiculous 13-0 in winner-take-all WNBA games

Associated Press, Doug Feinberg from

When it comes to winner-take-all games in the WNBA playoffs, Diana Taurasi takes them all.

Taurasi put on quite a show in a single-elimination matchup Thursday night, helping the Phoenix Mercury advance to the semifinals by scoring 27 points in a win at Connecticut.

The victory made Taurasi a perfect 13-0 in postseason games that decide which team advances to the next round and who goes home. That’s right, she’s never lost a deciding Game 3 or 5, or even a one-and-done. She’s won seven of those decisive contests on the road, too.


How Desiree Linden Made History At The 2018 Boston Marathon By Just “Showing Up”

Bustle magazine, Deena Kastor from

There are few things more rule-breaking than being the first American woman to win the Boston Marathon in 33 years. Despite her successes, Desiree Linden isn’t slowing down — which is something you might expect from a long-distance runner. The two-time Olympian has taken her 2018 Boston marathon win in stride, and she’s already training for her next race.

In conversation with good friend, fellow Olympian, and American record-holder in the marathon Deena Kastor, Linden talks about her long, and sometimes difficult, journey to the podium — and how many rules she had to break to get there.


Maria Sharapova Answers 37 Questions About Travel

Conde Nast Traveler, Katherine Lagrave from

The tennis star shares her thoughts on TSA PreCheck, soup dumplings, beating jet lag, and much, much more.


Megan Guarnier to retire after World Championships

Cycling News from

“After eleven exhilarating and exhausting years, it is time for me to move on from professional cycling,” Guarnier wrote.

“I have far-over-achieved anything I ever thought to be possible within cycling when I embarked on this journey. Every National Championship win, my first UCI single-day win in Strade Bianche (to this day one of my favorite races), winning the Giro Rosa, winning the Overall World Tour and becoming an Olympian. These huge accomplishments are far beyond what the girl who cried after her first Pro1/2/3 race because she ‘would never win again’ would ever believe.”

Guarnier said she planned to focus on returning to school and starting a family after 11 years in the sport.


From high school star to elite pro, Mallory Pugh is a shining example for change in U.S. Soccer

Los Angeles Times, Dylan Hernandez from

Mallory Pugh smiled.

“It’s funny,” she said.

There’s plenty that America’s next soccer star finds funny. That’s how she described the Olympics being more competitive than the Under-20 World Cup. She used the phrase when recalling her troubles enrolling in an online college course.

In this particular instance, she was talking about returning from a sprained knee ligament to train with the U.S. women’s national team for the first time in more than four months.

“It takes a couple trainings to get back into that speed of play,” Pugh said.


Exclusive: Wales goalkeeper Laura O’Sullivan marks unlikely rise to brink of World Cup – ‘I go straight to training from the office’

The Telegraph (UK), Luke Edwards from

At around half past three on Friday, Laura O’Sullivan cleared her desk, packed a bag, said goodbye to her co-workers at the Cardiff office she works in and left for the weekend to forget the mundane, knowing the next time she saw them she could be heading to the World Cup with Wales a national heroine.

It would be an incredible story. O’Sullivan did not start playing football until she was 19 and only found out she was good in goal when nobody else wanted to play there while at College at Trinity St David’s. Having initially wanted to be a defender, she only committed herself to goalkeeping three years ago. Even now, despite representing her country ten times since making her debut in 2016, she does not play professionally.

The 27-year-old has been one of the stars of Wales’ World Cup qualifying campaign, the goalkeeper who is yet to concede a goal, player of the match when they secured a famous goalless draw against England in Southampton, setting up a fascinating winner takes all clash with the English, in Newport, on Friday night.

But she has achieved it while working full time in the administration department of a training services provider, leaving work up to four times a week to head straight to training with Cyncoed Ladies.



Does partnering with men’s clubs help or hinder women’s football teams?

The Guardian, Beau Dure from

Is a downtown stadium a cure-all for any soccer club that needs a boost? And do US women’s soccer teams need to be affiliated with men’s professional clubs? Like so many things in an allegedly simple game, it’s complicated.

The Washington Spirit, finishing up an awful campaign in the National Women’s Soccer League, gave Audi Field a test drive on Saturday night. The Spirit’s usual home field – the Maryland SoccerPlex – is more than 30 miles from the Washington Monument. In contrast, the Monument is clearly visible over the stands at the new downtown Audi Field, built for Major League Soccer’s DC United.

DC United certainly needed this stadium. The once-mighty club has fallen behind its peers after flushing away money for years to rent the flora- and fauna-infested RFK Stadium. Audi Field provides a unique home advantage, with stands so steeply pitched that the vendors should sell crampons to those in the top rows. And controlling revenue is essential, making possible signings such as Wayne Rooney, who looks anything but over the hill.

But will it help the Spirit?


Running While Female

The New York Times, Talya Minsberg from

The death of the runner Mollie Tibbetts has ignited a national conversation about the harassment and fears women face every time they go for a run.


This Is Personal | By Stephen Curry

The Player's Tribune, Stephen Curry from

… Last week, I did something I’ll never forget: I hosted a basketball camp for girls.

Let’s call it the “first annual,” actually, because I’m definitely planning on hosting one again. It was a lot of fun — just to share a court with 200 girls who love to hoop, and watch them do their thing.

But I think it was also something more than that. I think it was also the sort of thing that can help to shift people’s perspectives. So that when someone sees an NBA player is hosting a camp, now, you know — maybe they won’t automatically assume it’s for boys. And so eventually we can get to a place where the women’s game, it isn’t “women’s basketball.” It’s just basketball. Played by women, and celebrated by everyone.

One thing we’ve always maintained about our camp, is that we want it to be world class. And in 2018? Here’s the truth: You’re not world class if you’re not actively about inclusion.



This new sports bra will change the way you feel about working out

Improper Bostonian, Emily Turner from

Reebok is giving you one less excuse to skip the gym. The Boston-based behemoth made a giant leap forward for active women everywhere with the new PureMove sports bra, available in stores today. The bra uses a new proprietary Motion Sense Technology that stiffens with high impact movement (we’re looking at you, jump squats) and relaxes in low intensity activities (like yoga or that namaste in bed vibe). The result is a bra made with reactive fabric technology that moves with you and a barely-there feeling from your next burpee to your next Netflix binge.


sports medicine

Walking Ground Reaction Force Post-ACL Reconstruction: Analysis of Time and Symptoms. – PubMed – NCBI

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise journal from


The association between lower-extremity loading and clinically-relevant knee symptoms at different time points following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) is unclear. Vertical ground reaction force (vGRF) from walking was compared between individuals with and without clinically-relevant knee symptoms in three cohorts: <12 months post-ACLR, 12-24 months post-ACLR, and >24 months post-ACLR.

128 individuals with unilateral ACLR were classified as symptomatic or asymptomatic, based on previously-defined cutoff values for the Knee Osteoarthritis and Injury Outcome Score (<12 months post-ACLR [symptomatic n=28, asymptomatic n=24]; 12-24 months post-ACLR [symptomatic n=15, asymptomatic n=15], and >24 months post-ACLR [symptomatic n=13, asymptomatic n=33]). vGRF exerted on the ACLR limb was collected during walking gait, and functional analyses of variance were used to evaluate the effects of symptoms and time post-ACLR on vGRF throughout stance phase (α=0.05).

Symptomatic individuals, <12 months post-ACLR, demonstrated less vGRF during both vGRF peaks (i.e. weight acceptance and propulsion) and greater vGRF during midstance, compared to asymptomatic individuals. vGRF characteristics were not different between symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals for most of stance in individuals between 12 and 24 months post-ACLR. Symptomatic individuals who were >24 months post-ACLR, exhibited greater vGRF during both peaks, but lesser vGRF during midstance, compared to asymptomatic individuals.

Relative to asymptomatic individuals, symptomatic individuals are more likely to underload the ACLR limb early following ACLR (i.e., <12 months) during both vGRF peaks, but overload the ACLR limb, during both vGRF peaks, at later time points (i.e., >24 months). We propose these differences in lower extremity loading during walking might have implications for long-term knee health, and should be considered when designing therapeutic interventions for individuals with an ACLR.


The Medical Minute: Lessen the risk of ACL injury for high school athletes

Penn State Health News from

… “Young, growing athletes are at high risk for ACL injuries, so it is important to work with coaches, trainers and medical professionals to minimize the risk of injury today, as well as the likelihood of reinjury or arthritis many years from now,” said Dr. Paul Sherbondy, an orthopedic surgeon at Penn State Health Medical Group – Park Avenue in State College.

According to Sherbondy, the ACL is one of the four major ligaments in the knee and the most commonly injured. It connects the thigh bone to the shin bone and A close-up depiction of a scan of a knee joint, with the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) highlighted.helps stabilize the knee joint. ACL injuries range from a mild overextension to a full tear. “Anyone who has injured this ligament is at higher risk for reinjury, as well as early-onset osteoarthritis of the knee,” he said.



Why Women Stay Out of the Spotlight at Work

Harvard Business Review; Priya Fielding-Singh, Devon Magliozzi and Swethaa Ballakrishnen from

To get ahead in the workplace, you have to be seen. Being visible at work allows employees to demonstrate their skills, land prominent assignments, and build strategic relationships.

For women, however, the importance of visibility creates a conundrum.

On the one hand, women’s contributions are systematically overlooked at work. This limits their professional advancement and helps to explain why the senior levels of organizations remain overwhelmingly male. Yet when women try to make themselves more visible, they can face backlash for violating expectations about how women should behave, and risk losing their hard-won career gains.

How do women navigate this no-win situation?


What Adolescent Girls Wish Their Parents Understood About Them

KQED, MindShift from

This excerpt is from the girls’ section of “Will Puberty Last My Whole Life? REAL Answers to REAL Questions from Preteens About Body Changes, Sex, and Other Growing-Up Stuff” by Julie Metzger and Robert Lehmann. Some of the questions most frequently asked by adolescent girls are featured in this chapter, “How Can I Make My Family Seem Like More of an Option to Talk To? …And Other Questions About Your Relationship with Your Parents.”


Building a Winning Squad: Balanced scoring or a few elite scorers?

Medium, Her Hoop Stats, Sophia Tannir from

There are infinite ways to create a successful team. From building around one superstar to crafting a team full of solid contributors, there is no single formula for putting together a championship squad. Scoring is never done by just one member of a team, but some teams have scoring that is much more concentrated than others.

Using the Gini coefficient, an economic measure of equality often applied to income (it identifies whether a country’s wealth is held mainly by a few individuals or distributed more evenly among the population), we can take a look at whether a team’s scoring comes mainly from a few key players or is more evenly distributed.

Let’s break down the scoring concentration of a few of this year’s teams and see how they compare to teams from previous seasons.



Hayley Wickenheiser and the search for the NHL’s first female general manager – Weekly Reader

ESPN NHL, Greg Wyshynski from

… It started at the top when Brendan Shanahan, whose only managerial experience was as the NHL’s first Department of Player Safety sheriff, was named team president in 2014. Three months later, he hired 28-year-old Kyle Dubas as an assistant general manager, a move that was as noteworthy for the young executive’s commitment to analytics as it was for his experience. Four years later, Dubas ascended to become the team’s general manager, completing the track Shanahan had placed him on. Criticisms of his age, experience, or ability to work with the egos of successful coaches and players were summarily ignored; Shanahan hired what he considered to be the best person for the job.


CWHL commissioner aims for improved visibility of women’s hockey

Sportsnet.ca, Canadian Press from

When a board member from the Canadian Women’s Hockey League reached out to her about a unique opportunity, Jayna Hefford jumped at the chance.

“It’s something I was certainly excited about,” Hefford said in an interview with the Canadian Press on Sunday. “From being a player to a university coach to now having this greater impact, it’s a positive influence I’m hoping to provide.”

The four-time Olympic gold medallist was named the league’s interim commissioner on July 19, just a day after Brenda Andress, its inaugural commissioner, announced her resignation.

Under Andress, the league expanded from four teams to six. The league also expanded into the United States and China and secured Canadian broadcast rights with Sportsnet.


NCAA Swimming Lands ‘F’ Grade for Lack of Women Coaching Female Teams

SwimSwam blog, Torrey Hart from

Last week the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport at the University of Minnesota published its annual findings on women coaching women’s teams at the NCAA level.

Prepared by Tucker Center co-director Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D, the reports highlight the percentage of women’s teams coached by female coaches at all three NCAA levels. LaVoi’s findings show that swimming and water polo are among the sports with the fewest female head coaches of female teams.


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