Sports Science

Kell Brook and two of the Sheffield Hallam University team. Credit: Sheffield Hallam University.

By Alan Ruddock, Sheffield Hallam University

Amid all the flashing lights, it was a moment of sheer exhilaration when the winner was finally announced: “By a majority decision, the new IBF welterweight champion on the world – Kell Brook.”

The world's fastest sprinters have unique gait features that account for some of their ability to achieve fast speeds, according to two new studies which indicate that the secret to elite sprinting speeds lies in the distinct limb dynamics sprinters use to elevate ground forces upon foot-ground impact.

The new findings address a major performance question that has remained unanswered for more than a decade.

Do women and men ride differently? If so, would a horse know in a blind human rider test?

For centuries, horses were a tool of wealthy elites during war and so riding was largely restricted to males. By contrast, today nearly 80 percent of riders are women. Modern-day equestrian sports is one of very few fields where men and women compete directly against one another at all levels, from beginners in gymkhanas to national champions in the Olympic Games.  Even chess insists women are different than men while equestrians do not.

A new study investigated the value of the Pre-Exhaustion (PreEx) training method and found that that the various arrangements of different exercise protocols is of less relevance than simply performing resistance training exercises with a high intensity of effort within any protocol. 

Was Spanish hurdler María José Martínez-Patiño a male or female athlete? If science can't answer such a basic biological question as that, how can it determine if Lance Armstrong took performance-enhancing drugs? Yet the answer is sometimes cloudy. 

Males and females compete in different categories because men are biologically different. If men competed against women in many events, the participation of women would be scant because men would hold win all of the events and hold most of the records.  Martínez-Patiño
was a successful hurdler in the Spanish nationals but a persistent rumor - invoked again and again by female competitors - turned out to be true; Martínez-Patiño

In the NFL. there is a salary cap and while money in contracts can be guaranteed, the contract itself is not. For people outside the US this makes no sense but basically every contract has a bonus, which is guaranteed, and then an annual salary, which is not. A team can waive a player and the money of the bonus counts 'against the cap' while the annual salary is prorated.

Since emerging from the primordial ooze, organic life has been doing unnatural things in defiance of nature. Nothing is as unnatural as endurance running but sentient beings like to push boundaries.

Endurance running is impressive, but it is risky. There are calls for pre-participation electrocardiogram (ECG) screenings because of an alarming number of sudden death occurrences in athletes. including undetected heart disease in a young and seemingly healthy people, but it turns out heart attack is not the greatest health risk for runners, as is commonly believed. 

Concert promoters and sports teams have long insisted that scalping - private ticket sales outside a venue - hurts their revenue and forces fans to pay exorbitant prices for tickets.

Not so, according to a new analysis which concludes that resale markets can add value to tickets sold by concert venues and Ticketmaster. Suppose you are interested in a Bruno Mars and Pharrell Williams concert that is three months away. You're not 100 percent sure you'll be able to make it because you  have to travel, so you don't buy tickets at all.

Female triathletes are at risk for pelvic floor disorders, decreased energy, menstrual irregularities and abnormal bone density, according to researchers at Loyola University Health System (LUHS). These data were presented at the American Urogynecologic Society 2014 Scientific Meeting in Washington, DC.

The study found that one in three female triathletes suffers from a pelvic floor disorder such as urinary incontinence, bowel incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse. One in four had one component of the female athlete triad, a condition characterized by decreased energy, menstrual irregularities and abnormal bone density from excessive exercise and inadequate nutrition.

There are a lot of conflicting reports about the common elbow surgery made famous by Major League Baseball pitcher, Tommy John - Ulna Collateral Ligament (UCL) reconstruction surgery. Some reports show it helps pitchers win more games, some show it does not.