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Tytuł: Agility performance of adolescent Polish recreational skiers

Małgorzata Pasławska, Beata Wojtyczek, Christian Raschner
Studies in Physical Culture and Tourism
Strona początkowa:
Strona końcowa:
Słowa kluczowe:
recreational alpine skiing, adolescents, skiing injuries, agility performance, specific fitness tests for skiers, Speedy jump test

Introduction. Downhill skiing is one of the most popular winter sports. It imposes very high requirements concerning technique and physical fitness, especially in terms of movement coordination. This is crucially significant for young people practicing recreational skiing because of the alarming shortage of physical activity in that age group. In Poland there are no up-to-date and consistent testing methods for evaluation of pre-season skiing fitness preparation and training of specific skiing abilities. In this regard, the experience of Austrians, who have been applying efficient training and testing methods for years and achieved numerous sporting successes, can be effectively used in Poland. Aim of Study. The study aimed to evaluate the agility performance of Polish adolescent recreational skiers on the basis of the Speedy jump test and to develop Polish norms for this test. Material and Methods. 282 boys (n = 154) and girls (n = 128) aged 13-16 years from two Warsaw junior high schools took part in the study. The subjects were divided into two groups: the control group consisting of non-skiing students (CN - attending the basic curriculum program and; CS - attending the sport-profiled curriculum program), and the experimental group consisting of recreational skiers. The tests were carried out in a gym hall, from October 2007 to February 2008. Jumping agility was tested with the Speedy jump test. Significant differences between mean values in the groups were determined with a variance analysis. Results. Statistical analysis showed that mean values in the CS group were significantly different (p < 0.001) from the results in the E and CN groups. In each case the CS group achieved considerably better results in the Speedy jump test. Further analysis showed that 32% of girls and 31% of boys from group E achieved lower than average results in the Speedy jump test. Conclusions. The study showed that the level of required jumping agility for skiers was unsatisfactory. The Speedy jump test results revealed that as many as one-third of researched skiers scored lower than average and because of that they might be more exposed to skiing injuries. There is an urgent need to introduce skiing preparation for young people based on reliable fitness training.