In sports science, it is widely acknowledged that warming up before vigorous activity is important(Caliskan et al., 2019). As it helps to increase the body temperature and facilitates increased blood flow to the working muscles to supply oxygen and nutrients. The overall goal of any pre-activity routine is to prevent muscle injuries and to prepare athletes for practice or competition ahead (Caliskan et al., 2019). It has been suggested that coaches and physical trainers should consider the warm-up in order not to cause a loss of physical performance in the players and to get individual improvement in preparation for the competition(Yanci, Iturri, Castillo, Pardeiro, & Nakamura, 2019).
Warm protocols normally involve some stretching either be dynamic stretching, static stretch or both, which facilitates blood flow and range of motion through the joints. Increasing blood flow provides a greater amount of oxygen delivery to the working muscles and better perfusion of muscles allow the possibility of better nutrition(Caliskan et al., 2019). Increasing oxygen and nutrients in the blood, to the working muscles can greatly enhance the performance of an athlete. According to (Caliskan et al., 2019) different muscles in the body show proportional change resulting from previous training and frequency of use or function.
According to (Chaâri et al., 2015) athletes and coaches must take into account the time of the day, duration and load of the warm-up protocol before undertaking physical performance.(Avloniti et al., 2016) added that relatively short duration protocols (≤ 60 sec) that are usually employed during warm-up sessions prior to training or competition may not impair speed and agility performance. Prolonged Static Stretching protocols are not usually employed during everyday practice or competition during which the development of maximal force is the main issue. They are rather used when a chronic enhancement of muscle’s stretching potential is the primary training goal(Avloniti et al., 2016). In their study (Yanci et al., 2019) speculated that a greater warm-up load may be associated with greater fatigue, an aspect that may have influenced the decrease in sprint performance.
The Wingate test (WAnT) is composed by 30 s all-out effort against a constant load and is the most commonly used test to evaluate the anaerobic performance of athletes on upper and lower body cycle ergometers(Nikolaidis et al., 2018). Variables such as peak power (PP) and mean power (MP) are usually utilized to measure the anaerobic power and capacity. Regular, programmed physical activity leads to physical and physiological benefits, and increase in strength and endurance(Nikolaidis et al., 2018). Assessment of the physical capacities of athletes is one of the most important issues in modern sports, and many tests are used in order to monitor the efficacy of training regimes and improvement of sport performance(Jakovljević et al., 2018).
The ability of an athlete to be able to meet the demand of the sport they participate in is closely related to their capacity to produce maximum power in single action during performance. (Jakovljević et al., 2018) suggested that physiological determinants like explosive power, which are affected by anaerobic energy pathways, should also be incorporated in the planning of training processes, performance prediction and talent identification in sport. These physiological variables are not only the determinants of sport success, it takes more than those alone, whereby motivation and tactics are important contributing factors as well. A well planned and systematic warm up duration prior to physical performance to activate these variables is also a vital element when it comes to the success of an athlete(Nikolaidis et al., 2018).
From the observations I made generally in sports, specifically in sporting practice or competition performance, many athletes just before they engage in physical performance activities, they usually undertake some warm up haphazardly without a proper plan and time frame to perform those particular warm ups. Those untimely warm ups protocols entirely depends on the interest and preference of an athlete. They are normally not done with proper monitoring of their effects on the subsequent physical performance. This could affect the outcome of the physical performance if not done properly in a systematic manner.
A systematic well planned warm up protocols with time frame that govern the duration it is suppose to take and the content of the warm up, would be an important step in the right direction by coaches and physical trainers. However, it is very important that these exercise specialists, when formulating these warm up protocols that they should develop them in such a way that they cater for every athlete`s individual uniqueness and needs. This is because athletes respond differently under different circumstances
The main purpose of the current study is to investigate the effect of warm-up durations (WU8min, WU15min, and WU25min) on Wingate Anaerobic Test (WAnT) performance and physical performance of elite athletes. There is a need to investigate the effect of warm-up with different duration (WU8min, WU15min, and WU25min) on Wingate Anaerobic Test (WAnT) and physical performance of elite athletes; athletes in different sport perform warm-up routines randomly without taking into consideration the duration of the warm-up in preparation for physical performances. This study therefore, purpose to find out whether or not the different warm-up durations has an effect on the WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes.
Statement of the problem
Duration of the warm-up protocol has a significant impact on the subsequent performance of physical activity or any particular sport. The aim of warming up before any sport or physical performance is to increase the core temperature, increase blood flow with oxygen to the working muscles to get an athlete ready for the performance. Athletes are different as individuals and respond differently to warm ups depending on its duration and circumstances. Some athletes respond quickly to short warm-up protocols, some they take longer to respond or even get ready for the physical performance within the time period given. Athletes respond differently to warm up depending on its duration, content or even the intensity of the warm up, it could affecting the outcome of physical performance of those particular athletes, if not catered for. This is to say that coaches and physical trainers should not use one warm up protocol for all the athletes.
(Yanci et al., 2019) carried out a study of similar nature, though they have investigated effects of warm up durations using only team sport (soccer) and did not used the WAnT or combined both elite team sport and individual sport codes.(Frikha, Chaâri, & Souissi, 2015)examined the effects of sport practice and warm-up duration on diurnal changes in anaerobic exercise performance and RPE.(Frikha et al., 2015) used physical education student those who trained and those who did not train, but not elite athletes from different sporting codes.
Maximizing and preventing injuries with a systematic and well planned warm up protocol, as an athlete is of great importance. It can even boast one`s confidence to perform to their maximum ability. (Yanci et al., 2019) recommended that athletes and coaches should consider controlling the duration of the warm up protocols.
Purpose of the study
The purpose of this study is to investigate the effect of different warm up durations on WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes. Specific knowledge for time period for warm up may be of good benefit to athletes, coaches and physical trainers. They may be able to optimize their level of performance by manipulating their training or competition progarmmes. Furthermore, the data from this study will be original; since it will be collected from different elite sport codes, comprising both team and individual sport. As a benefit, many sport codes could adopt it and utilize it for their optimum benefit.
Rationale for the study
Warm up prior to strenuous physical activities has always attracted the attention of sport scientists(Harmancı & Karavelioğlu, 2017). The main aim of warm up is to enhance the athlete`s performance as they ready themselves for physical performance and prevent possible injuries that could happen, if it is not performed accordingly. Furthermore (Harmancı & Karavelioğlu, 2017) highlighted that approaches with regarding to warm up exercise have been continuously changed and brings about the contradictions related to the effects of warm up and duration on the performance . Elements in the warm up protocol, such as duration and the intensity of the warm up and subsequent performance of physical high intensities may determine the success and execution of power activities. A well planned and systematic warm up protocol, that in campuses adequate content, duration and intensity, performed by an elite athlete could enhance their subsequent physical performance and help to prevent injuries.
With regards to the duration of warm up, previous studies have used different durations ranging from 5 min (Baklouti, Chtourou, Aloui, Chaouachi, & Souissi, 2015) to 25 min (Yanci et al., 2019). It has been suggested that a greater warm up load may be associated with greater fatigue, an aspect that may have influence the decrease in speed performance activities (Yanci et al., 2019). Several studies have investigated this aspect in order to find out effect of warm up duration on physical performance(Chaâri et al., 2015; Frikha et al., 2015; Yanci et al., 2019). It has been found that when applying two different warm durations, one of 5 – 15 min, and one of 17 – 35 min, participants showed an increased power generation, after both protocols where performed. So far, there is no work done that investigated the effect of warm up duration on WAnT and physical performance of elite athletes from different sporting codes. A study by(Baklouti et al., 2015) investigated the effect of active warm up duration on morning short term maximal performance during Ramadan, and concluded that during Ramadan food and fluid intake is limited, as such the beneficial effect of prolonged warm up was no longer observed. Most studies did not utilize athletes or elite athlete from different sporting codes(Baklouti et al., 2015; Caliskan et al., 2019; Chaâri et al., 2015; Frikha et al., 2015).
The effect of warm duration on WAnT and physical performance of elite athletes, should be investigated, specifically teams and individual sport; emphasizing the duration of the warm up protocol, that is to say how long it takes. If not, the warm up on itself could have a great impact on the activity that will be performed afterwards. Warm up is meant to elevate the core temperature, and activate physiological responses in the body. Athletes are different and respond differently under different circumstances, some respond fast to shorter warm up duration and be ready for the main even instantly while some may take longer to respond to the same warm up protocol, especially in team sports where by the warm up normally is performed as a team. Due to these differences no single warm up protocol should be generalized to different athletes or players, coaches and physical trainers should design warm up protocols taking into considerations the individual differences amongst athletes. In that regard warm up protocols will fully benefic the athletes, and as a result helps to improve the performance. This is an attempt to show that warm up duration is very important aspect of physical performance; specifically in those sport activities that requires generation of explosive power.
With this knowledge, this study could address the gap on scientific knowledge on the effect of warm up duration on WAnT and physical performance of elite athletes, of different sporting codes. This might also help the coaches and physical trainers to not design the warm up protocol that is for everyone but individualized one.
Objective of the study
The objective of this study is to investigate the effect of duration (WU8min, WU15min, and WU25min) on WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes.
The following research questions will direct this study.
- a) Is there a significant difference between WU8minon WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes?
- b) Is there a significant difference between WU15minon WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes?
- c) Is there a significant difference between WU25minon WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes?
- d) There is no significant difference between WU8minon WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes?
- e) There is no significant difference between WU15minon WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes?
- f) There is no significant difference between WU25minon WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes
The following assumptions will be considered in the study.
- a) It is assumed that the selected elite athletes will not miss the test sessions until the end of the study
- b) It is assumed that the data that will be collected will be accurate to the precision of the instruments used
- c) It is assumed that the instruments that will be used to collect data will be valid, reliable and of international standard
- d) It is assumed that the researchers that will be collecting data will be skilled and certified in data collection
Significant of the study
The study investigates the effect of warm up durations (WU8min, WU15min, and WU25min) on WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes. There is currently limited work specifically investigating effect of warm up durations (WU8min, WU15min, and WU25min) on WAnT performance and physical performance of elite athletes. Therefore, the findings could be used by the athletes, coaches and physical trainers to incorporate them in their sporting programmes to improve their performance. The study could provide the basis for coming up with suitable warm up duration that will be best utilized to optimize athlete’s performance.
Both athletes and coaches should know and be able to utilize the best warm up protocol duration which will help them improve their athletic performance. The only way to know is to identify the suitable warm up protocol duration that will help to effectively enhance the physical performance, which will not have a detrimental effect on the performance of an athlete, but helps to produce the best result possible. To athletes this could minimize the fatigue that is caused by longer warmup duration, in which athletes may feel tired before even the main performance. With effective and efficient warm up duration physical performance could improve and limited injuries occurrence among athletes.
Participants of the study will be elite athletes comprising of sprinters, soccer players and basketball players, who are competing in different elite leagues in Botswana. The study will use elite athletes only. Therefore, the results of the study could not be generalized to everyone who is not an elite athlete. The success of this study will be based on the willingness of the participants to take part in it.
- a) Participants may not fully commit to duration of the study
- b) Participant may not give out their all, despite the fact that the importance of giving “all-out” to give them maximum power output during the Wingate anaerobic test having been explained to motivate them.
The study will be confined in the University of Botswana campus indoor sports center. The study will be delimited in Gaborone city, where the fitness laboratory, with the relevant equipment needed for the test is located. The study is also delimited to the elite athletes from different sporting codes.
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