Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 5

Search results for: P. Smolianov

5 General and Sport Specific Fitness Testing Practices: Global Developments

Authors: Peter Smolianov, Jed Smith, Lisa Chen, Steven Dion, Christopher Schoen, Jaclyn Norberg

Abstract:

This study compared general conditioning and sport specific fitness tests used in China, European Union (EU), Russia, and the United States. A constant content comparison method was used to identify the differences. Data from the study indicated that there were shared test components, including aerobic fitness, muscular strength, endurance, and flexibility. However, the testing components and items, as well as the cut-off values of the analyzed tests varied by country for the same gender and age. Culturally unique methods of testing and preparing for the tests were identified. Additionally, evidence revealed support for lifelong fitness and long-term sport participation through comprehensive fitness and wellness guidelines for different age groups and through new internet-based technologies.

Keywords: fitness testing, global trends, new developments, worldwide comparison

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4 Nigerian Football System: Examining Meso-Level Practices against a Global Model for Integrated Development of Mass and Elite Sport

Authors: I. Derek Kaka’an, P. Smolianov, D. Koh Choon Lian, S. Dion, C. Schoen, J. Norberg

Abstract:

This study was designed to examine mass participation and elite football performance in Nigeria with reference to advance international football management practices. Over 200 sources of literature on sport delivery systems were analyzed to construct a globally applicable model of elite football integrated with mass participation, comprising of the following three levels: macro- (socio-economic, cultural, legislative, and organizational), meso- (infrastructures, personnel, and services enabling sport programs) and micro-level (operations, processes, and methodologies for development of individual athletes). The model has received scholarly validation and showed to be a framework for program analysis that is not culturally bound. The Smolianov and Zakus model has been employed for further understanding of sport systems such as US soccer, US Rugby, swimming, tennis, and volleyball as well as Russian and Dutch swimming. A questionnaire was developed using the above-mentioned model. Survey questions were validated by 12 experts including academicians, executives from sport governing bodies, football coaches, and administrators. To identify best practices and determine areas for improvement of football in Nigeria, 120 coaches completed the questionnaire. Useful exemplars and possible improvements were further identified through semi-structured discussions with 10 Nigerian football administrators and experts. Finally, content analysis of Nigeria Football Federation’s website and organizational documentation was conducted. This paper focuses on the meso-level of Nigerian football delivery, particularly infrastructures, personnel, and services enabling sport programs. This includes training centers, competition systems, and intellectual services. Results identified remarkable achievements coupled with great potential to further develop football in different types of public and private organizations in Nigeria. These include: assimilating football competitions with other cultural and educational activities, providing favorable conditions for employees of all possible organizations to partake and help in managing football programs and events, providing football coaching integrated with counseling for prevention of antisocial conduct, and improving cooperation between football programs and organizations for peace-making and advancement of international relations, tourism, and socio-economic development. Accurate reporting of the sports programs from the media should be encouraged through staff training for better awareness of various events. The systematic integration of these meso-level practices into the balanced development of mass and high-performance football will contribute to international sport success as well as national health, education, and social harmony.

Keywords: football, high performance, mass participation, Nigeria, sport development

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3 Evaluating a Holistic Fitness Program Used by High Performance Athletes and Mass Participants

Authors: Peter Smolianov, Jed Smith, Lisa Chen, Steven Dion, Christopher Schoen, Jaclyn Norberg

Abstract:

This study evaluated the effectiveness of an experimental training program used to improve performance and health of competitive athletes and recreational sport participants. This holistic program integrated and advanced Eastern and Western methods of prolonging elite sports participation and enjoying lifelong fitness, particularly from China, India, Russia, and the United States. The program included outdoor, gym, and water training approaches focused on strengthening while stretching/decompressing and on full body activation-all in order to improve performance as well as treat and prevent common disorders and pains. The study observed and surveyed over 100 users of the program including recreational fitness and sports enthusiasts as well as elite athletes who competed for national teams of different countries and for Division I teams of National Collegiate Athletic Association in the United States. Different types of sport were studied, including territorial games (e.g., American football, basketball, volleyball), endurance/cyclical (athletics/track and field, swimming), and artistic (e.g., gymnastics and synchronized swimming). Results of the study showed positive effects on the participants’ performance and health, particularly for those who used the program for more than two years and especially in reducing spinal disorders and in enabling to perform new training tasks which previously caused back pain.

Keywords: lifelong fitness, injury prevention, prolonging sport participation, improving performance and health

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2 US Track And Field System: Examining Micro-Level Practices against a Global Model for Integrated Development of Mass and Elite Sport

Authors: Peter Smolianov, Steven Dion, Christopher Schoen, Jaclyn Norberg, Nicholas Stone, Soufiane Rafi

Abstract:

This study assessed the micro-level elements of track and field development in the US against a model for integrating high-performance sport with mass participation. This investigation is important for the country’s international sport performance, which declined relative to other countries and wellbeing, which in its turn deteriorated as over half of the US population became overweight. A questionnaire was designed for the following elements of the model: talent identification and development as well as advanced athlete support. Survey questions were validated by 12 experts, including academics, executives from sport governing bodies, coaches, and administrators. To determine the areas for improvement, the questionnaires were completed by 102 US track and field coaches representing the country’s regions and coaching levels. Possible advancements were further identified through semi-structured discussions with 10 US track and field administrators. The study found that talent search and development is a critically important area for improvement: 49 percent of respondents had overall negative perceptions, and only 16 percent were positive regarding these US track and field practices. Both quantitative survey results and open responses revealed that the key reason for the inadequate athlete development was a shortage of well-educated and properly paid coaches: 77 percent of respondents indicated that coach expertise is never or rarely high across all participant ages and levels. More than 40 percent of the respondents were uncertain of or not familiar with world’s best talent identification and development practices, particularly methods of introducing children to track and field from outside the sport’s participation base. Millions more could be attracted to the sport by adopting best international practices. First, physical education should be offered a minimum three times a week in all school grades, and track and field together with other healthy sports, should be taught at school to all children. Second, multi-sport events, including track and field disciplines, should be organized for everyone within and among all schools, cities and regions. Three, Australian and Eastern European methods of talent search at schools should be utilized and tailored to the US conditions. Four, comprehensive long term athlete development guidelines should be used for the advancement of the American Development Model, particularly track and field tests and guidelines as part of both school education and high-performance athlete development for every age group from six to over 70 years old. These world’s best practices are to improve the country’s international performance while increasing national sport participation and positively influencing public health.

Keywords: high performance, mass participation, sport development, track and field, USA

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1 Comparing Practices of Swimming in the Netherlands against a Global Model for Integrated Development of Mass and High Performance Sport: Perceptions of Coaches

Authors: Melissa de Zeeuw, Peter Smolianov, Arnold Bohl

Abstract:

This study was designed to help and improve international performance as well increase swimming participation in the Netherlands. Over 200 sources of literature on sport delivery systems from 28 Australasian, North and South American, Western and Eastern European countries were analyzed to construct a globally applicable model of high performance swimming integrated with mass participation, comprising of the following seven elements and three levels: Micro level (operations, processes, and methodologies for development of individual athletes): 1. Talent search and development, 2. Advanced athlete support. Meso level (infrastructures, personnel, and services enabling sport programs): 3. Training centers, 4. Competition systems, 5. Intellectual services. Macro level (socio-economic, cultural, legislative, and organizational): 6. Partnerships with supporting agencies, 7. Balanced and integrated funding and structures of mass and elite sport. This model emerged from the integration of instruments that have been used to analyse and compare national sport systems. The model has received scholarly validation and showed to be a framework for program analysis that is not culturally bound. It has recently been accepted as a model for further understanding North American sport systems, including (in chronological order of publications) US rugby, tennis, soccer, swimming and volleyball. The above model was used to design a questionnaire of 42 statements reflecting desired practices. The statements were validated by 12 international experts, including executives from sport governing bodies, academics who published on high performance and sport development, and swimming coaches and administrators. In this study both a highly structured and open ended qualitative analysis tools were used. This included a survey of swim coaches where open responses accompanied structured questions. After collection of the surveys, semi-structured discussions with Federation coaches were conducted to add triangulation to the findings. Lastly, a content analysis of Dutch Swimming’s website and organizational documentation was conducted. A representative sample of 1,600 Dutch Swim coaches and administrators was collected via email addresses from Royal Dutch Swimming Federation' database. Fully completed questionnaires were returned by 122 coaches from all key country’s regions for a response rate of 7,63% - higher than the response rate of the previously mentioned US studies which used the same model and method. Results suggest possible enhancements at macro level (e.g., greater public and corporate support to prepare and hire more coaches and to address the lack of facilities, monies and publicity at mass participation level in order to make swimming affordable for all), at meso level (e.g., comprehensive education for all coaches and full spectrum of swimming pools particularly 50 meters long), and at micro level (e.g., better preparation of athletes for a future outside swimming and better use of swimmers to stimulate swimming development). Best Dutch swimming management practices (e.g., comprehensive support to most talented swimmers who win Olympic medals) as well as relevant international practices available for transfer to the Netherlands (e.g., high school competitions) are discussed.

Keywords: sport development, high performance, mass participation, swimming

Procedia PDF Downloads 132