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- Volume 19, Issue 2, 2007
South African Journal of Sports Medicine - Volume 19, Issue 2, 2007
Volumes & issues
Volume 19, Issue 2, 2007
Author Mike LambertSource: South African Journal of Sports Medicine 19 (2007)More Less
The discipline of sports medicine has developed exponentially in South Africa in the last 25 years. The first major scientific publications were on orthopaedic injuries, dehydration or heat stress. Reflecting on how the profession has evolved in content and depth of knowledge is remarkable. In this relatively short time period an enormous amount has been learnt about the aetiology of injury, the accelerated treatment of injury, and the prophylactic role that physical activity plays in reducing the risk of certain diseases.
Ethically we can no longer sit on the fence - a neuropsychological perspective on the cerebrally hazardous contact sports : review articleSource: South African Journal of Sports Medicine 19, pp 32 –38 (2007)More Less
Background and objective. The number of male and female contact sport participants is increasing worldwide. The aim of the review is to discuss the potential for deleterious sequelae of sports concussion (mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI)), and management thereof.
Discussion. Incidence of concussion in the field contact sports is high, not only for boxing, but also for soccer, football and especially rugby. An overview of studies investigating persistent deleterious cognitive and symptomatic outcome following cumulative sports MTBI suggests that individuals may be at risk for permanent neurological damage following participation in a contact sport. Established sequelae of traumatic brain injury (TBI) typically involving frontal systems include cognitive decline, behavioural changes such as diminished self-regulation and aggression, and increased risk for Alzheimer's disease. The presence of such consequences hidden within the context of the widely popularised contact sports, has societal implications that should be acknowledged. Compromised scholastic abilities and enhanced aggressive tendencies in association with sports MTBI are in need of further longitudinal research.
Conclusion. A comprehensive preventive approach to the management of MTBI in sport is advocated that includes professionally applied neuropsychological assessment as a crucial component. Future policy considerations are the introduction of mandatory informed consent for participation in a high-risk contact sport such as rugby, particularly at youth level, and financial provision for concussion management amongst economically disadvantaged populations.
Higher log position is not associated with better physical fitness in professional soccer teams in South Africa : original research articleAuthor J.R. ClarkSource: South African Journal of Sports Medicine 19, pp 40 –45 (2007)More Less
Objective. To assess the difference in physical fitness of players in successful versus less-successful professional soccer teams in South Africa.
Design. Professional soccer players (N = 140) underwent a battery of tests assessing important physiological components during the early part of their competitive season. Players were then separated into two groups on the basis of their teams' final log position in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) in South Africa. Players in successful (N = 70) and less-successful (N = 70) teams were in the top four or bottom six positions on the log respectively. Descriptive statistics (mean ± standard deviation (SD)) were calculated for each group, and independent t-tests were used to compare the means of the groups for each of the physical tests.
Main outcome measures. Body composition, flexibility, muscle strength-endurance, power, speed, agility, aerobic endurance, and repeat sprint distance.
Results. There were no significant differences between groups for all measures of body composition, flexibility, repeat sprint distance, and agility. Significant differences (p < 0.05) were found for sit-ups, aerobic endurance, and speed, but these were generally small, not meaningful differences in performance. Players in successful squads were significantly (p < 0.01) older than those in less-successful teams.
Conclusions. The results demonstrate that in South Africa level of physical fitness is not higher in more-successful compared with less-successful teams in the PSL. Factors other than physical fitness may be more important in determining successful league performance and discriminate better between players in teams with different levels of success. Improving professional soccer performance may require coaches and trainers to focus more attention on technical and tactical skill development in sport-specific training once an acceptable standard of fitness has been attained.
Effect of a prevention programme on the incidence of rugby injuries among 15- and 16-year-old schoolboys : original research articleSource: South African Journal of Sports Medicine 19, pp 46 –51 (2007)More Less
Objective. The primary aim of this study was to determine the effect of an injury prevention programme on the incidence of rugby injuries (overall, intrinsic and extrinsic injuries) among 15- and 16-year-old schoolboys, over a 2-year period. A secondary aim was to identify the percentage of intrinsic rugby injuries associated with a previous injury history.
Design. A non-equivalent experimental-control group design with multiple post-tests.
Subjects. A- and B-team rugby players (N =120) from 2 secondary schools in the North West province of South Africa.
Intervention. The injury prevention programme was planned according to the physical, motor, biomechanical and postural status of all players. Players in the experimental group received exercises to improve biomechanical and postural deficits identified, as well as drills to address shortcomings in speed, agility, and explosive power.
Main outcome measures. Rugby injuries were screened and injury data collected through the use of weekly sports-medicine clinics.
Results. Differences and changes in extrinsic injury incidence in this study could not be attributed to the effect of the prevention programme, and as a result injury trends related to overall injury incidence were inconsistent when the matching experimental and control groups were compared. However, the prevention programme did have a positive effect on the intrinsic injury incidence of both the15- (d = 1.61) and 16-year-old (d = 0.83) groups during the study period. During the second season there were no intrinsic injuries of a previous nature among both the experimental groups (0%), while in contrast intrinsic injuries of a previous nature still amounted to a significant fraction in both the control groups.
Conclusion. The present intervention programme did not have a practically significant effect on the incidence of overall rugby injuries and extrinsic rugby injuries in 15- and 16-year-old schoolboys over a 2-year period. However, in practice the prevention programme did have a significantly positive effect on the incidence of intrinsic rugby injuries among 15- and 16-year-old schoolboys over a period of 2 years. Timely introduction of this programme during the off-season is advised.
Source: South African Journal of Sports Medicine 19, pp 52 –58 (2007)More Less
Background and objectives. Little is known of the fluid replacement habits of participants in mountain bike (MTB) endurance events. This survey set out to determine the current perceptions and practices of this group of endurance athletes.
Method. Four hundred and twelve participants in the 3-day 2006 Sani2C (MTB) race completed questionnaires that elicited information regarding their regular fluid intake practices during competitive MTB endurance events. This included their general approach to fluid replacement, their fluid intake practices (type, amount and frequency), urine output and hydration status.
Results. While 70% (N = 290) reported that they based their fluid intake practices on personal past experiences, less than half the group (N = 177, 43%) were aware of official sport-specific guidelines. Although 86% (N = 354) reported making use of commercially available sport-specific drinks, consumption of water alone was reported by 34% of respondents (N = 140). The majority (N = 225, 55%) of the mountain bikers reported drinking every 16 - 30 minutes during an endurance ride, while 35% (N = 144) reported drinking every 0 - 15 minutes. Fifty-three per cent (N = 182) of the male respondents and 45% (N = 23) of female respondents reported a routine intake of > 750 ml per hour during endurance rides. This included 2 women who reported regular intakes of between 1 500 and 2 000 ml/hr. Only 7 (2%) reported receiving medical care for dehydration following their participation in previous MTB rides.
Conclusions. This survey indicates that although more than half of the mountain bikers did not acknowledge specific awareness of the official fluid replacement guidelines, over 80% reported drinking regularly during a race, and 52% (N = 212) reported a usual intake of > 750 ml/hr during endurance races. Until scientific studies have carefully examined the hydration status and fluid replacement needs of mountain bikers, MTB cyclists are cautioned against the practice of over-hydrating.
Source: South African Journal of Sports Medicine 19, pp 60 –64 (2007)More Less
Objective. To investigate the incidence of anterior knee pain, as well as the effect of sport participation, age of onset and gender differences on the condition.
Design. Questionnaires (N = 2 414), each containing 20 questions, were distributed to 10 - 17-year-old learners at 8 primary and 5 high schools in the Empangeni / Richards Bay area. The return rate was 76%.
Results. Twenty-seven per cent of the respondents reported anterior knee pain. Of these, 21% experienced pain in the left knee only, 34% in the right knee only, and 45% in both knees. Furthermore, 31% had visited a medical doctor because of the knee pain, 82% reported that the pain interfered with their sport participation, and 37% had visited a physiotherapist or biokineticist, of whom 43% reported that the intervention they received was successful. Previously 37% of the subjects had taken medication for the condition. The highest incidence of anterior knee pain was reported for 12 and 13-year-old girls and 14 - 15-year-old boys, which correlates with the period of the adolescent growth spurt. The incidence of anterior knee pain was higher amongst those who participated in sport more than 3 days per week and lower amongst those who participated less than 3 days per week or not at all.
Conclusions. Anterior knee pain is common amongst children between the ages of 10 and 17 years, with a peak during adolescence, especially among girls. Participation in physical activity increases the likelihood of anterior knee pain.