Purpose: To evaluate non-specific and ski-specific performance development in male (M) and female (F) peri-pubertal cross-country skiers and to evaluate their relationship with cross-country skiing (XCS) performance and biological maturation within each age category and sex. Methods: Twenty-one and 19 athletes under 14 and 16 years old, respectively (U14 and U16), were tested for biological maturation; non-specific speed, agility, strength, endurance, and balance; ski-specific speed, agility, and endurance. XCS index was considered as average percentage time-gap from the winner in four official races. Sex and age-category effects were verified and a model predicting XCS index was extrapolated for each group. Results: Performance capacities raised across age categories (p < 0.05) except for non-specific speed, agility, balance, and relative arm strength (p > 0.05). F showed advanced biological maturation and greater balance than M (p < 0.05), while M showed higher performance capacities (p < 0.05). XCS index was not related to biological maturation within each group (p > 0.05); its variance was explained by non-specific speed and ski-specific upper-body endurance in M-U14 (p = 0.014), lower-limb strength and ski-specific agility in M-U16 and F-U14 (both p = 0.001), ski-specific upper-body endurance in F-U16 (p = 0.002). Conclusion: Ski-specific performance capacities still develop during peri-puberty, with peri-pubertal M overperforming with respect to F of comparable performance level. XCS index was not influenced by biological maturation withing each age category, but it was rather explained by specific parameters that commonly undergo the "adolescent spurts", accordingly to the average biological maturation level of M and F athletes of each age category.

Non-specific and ski-specific performance development in peri-pubertal cross-country skiers

Zoppirolli, Chiara
;
Modena, Roberto;Bortolan, Lorenzo;Schena, Federico;Pellegrini, Barbara
2023-01-01

Abstract

Purpose: To evaluate non-specific and ski-specific performance development in male (M) and female (F) peri-pubertal cross-country skiers and to evaluate their relationship with cross-country skiing (XCS) performance and biological maturation within each age category and sex. Methods: Twenty-one and 19 athletes under 14 and 16 years old, respectively (U14 and U16), were tested for biological maturation; non-specific speed, agility, strength, endurance, and balance; ski-specific speed, agility, and endurance. XCS index was considered as average percentage time-gap from the winner in four official races. Sex and age-category effects were verified and a model predicting XCS index was extrapolated for each group. Results: Performance capacities raised across age categories (p < 0.05) except for non-specific speed, agility, balance, and relative arm strength (p > 0.05). F showed advanced biological maturation and greater balance than M (p < 0.05), while M showed higher performance capacities (p < 0.05). XCS index was not related to biological maturation within each group (p > 0.05); its variance was explained by non-specific speed and ski-specific upper-body endurance in M-U14 (p = 0.014), lower-limb strength and ski-specific agility in M-U16 and F-U14 (both p = 0.001), ski-specific upper-body endurance in F-U16 (p = 0.002). Conclusion: Ski-specific performance capacities still develop during peri-puberty, with peri-pubertal M overperforming with respect to F of comparable performance level. XCS index was not influenced by biological maturation withing each age category, but it was rather explained by specific parameters that commonly undergo the "adolescent spurts", accordingly to the average biological maturation level of M and F athletes of each age category.
2023
Biological maturity
Laboratory measurements
On-snow measurements
Performance
Pre-adolescence
Young athletes
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/1115968
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