Relative Age Effect in Young Swiss Alpine Skiers From 2004 to 2011

Gorski, Tatiane; Rosser, Thomas; Hoppeler, Hans-Heinrich; Vogt, Michael (2016). Relative Age Effect in Young Swiss Alpine Skiers From 2004 to 2011. International journal of sports physiology and performance, 11(4), pp. 455-463. Human Kinetics 10.1123/ijspp.2014-0418

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PURPOSE To verify whether the relative age effects (RAEs) occur among young male and female Swiss alpine skiers of different age groups and performance levels. Additionally, the efficacy of normalizing performance in physical tests to height and body mass to attenuate RAEs eventually present was tested. METHODS The Swiss-Ski Power Test consists of anthropometric measures and physical tests for coordination and speed, endurance and strength and is used since 2004 to evaluate 11- to 19-years old Swiss competitive alpine skiers. We analysed the distribution of 6996 tests performed by 1438 male and 1031 female alpine skiers between 2004 and 2011 according to the athlete's relative age quartile (Q). Differences in anthropometric measures and performance in physical tests according to Q were assessed and the possibility of attenuating eventual RAEs on performance by normalization of results to height and body mass was tested. RESULTS RAEs were found among all female and male age groups, with no differences between age groups. While performance level did not affect RAE for male skiers, it influenced RAE among female skiers. RAEs also influenced results in all physical tests except upper limbs strength. Normalization of results to body mass attenuated most RAEs identified. CONCLUSION small RAEs are present among young Swiss competitive alpine skiers and should be taken into account in training and selection settings, avoiding the waste of possible future talents. When ranking junior athletes according to their performance in physical tests, normalization of results to body mass decreases the bias caused by RAEs.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute of Anatomy > Functional Anatomy
04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute of Anatomy

UniBE Contributor:

Hoppeler, Hans-Heinrich and Vogt, Michael

Subjects:

600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

ISSN:

1555-0265

Publisher:

Human Kinetics

Language:

English

Submitter:

Benoît Zuber

Date Deposited:

09 Feb 2016 11:30

Last Modified:

29 Dec 2016 10:27

Publisher DOI:

10.1123/ijspp.2014-0418

PubMed ID:

26356790

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/75244

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