2014, Volume 10, Issue 1

The diversity of body composition, body proportions and strength abilities of female judokas in different weight categories

Aleksandra Stachoń1, Jadwiga Pietraszewska1, Anna Burdukiewicz1, Justyna Andrzejewska1

1Department of Physical Anthropology, University School of Physical Education in Wrocław, Poland

Author for correspondence: Aleksandra Stachoń; Department of Physical Anthropology, University School of Physical Education in Wrocław, Poland; email: aleksandra.stachon[at]awf.wroc.pl

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Background and Study Aim: Athletes who belong to the same weight category do not have to possess the identical body build and body composition, since body mass consists of a number of different components. The aim of the study was to find out weather female judokas in different weight categories varied regard to the contributions of particular body components, relative size characterizing musculature and skeletal massiveness and also strength abilities.
Material and Methods: The study material consisted of results of anthropological and body composition measurements of 50 female judo competitors, aged 16-20 years, included in the three weight divisions adopted in judo (lightweight, middleweight, heavyweight). The different anthropometric indices were calculated and the somatotypes according to Sheldon’s typology as modified by Heath and Carter were determined. The body composition was also examined with the use of bioelectrical impedance analysis. The athletes’ handgrip strength was also measured.
Results: The examined female judokas in the lightweight, middleweight and heavyweight categories differed from each other not only in terms of their body mass but also in a number of somatic features. The BIA showed that the heavyweight competitors had higher body fat mass and more massive body build than their counterparts from the two other weight categories. Also the SANOVA revealed significant differences between the somatotypes of judokas in various weight categories. The middleweight judokas had the greatest absolute handgrip strength despite the fact that they had medium content of muscle mass.
Conclusions: The analyzed weight categories of female judokas differed in body massiveness, fatness and musculature. It can be stated that the division of competitors into weight categories is fully justified in martial arts such as judo. The increase in body mass occurs mainly through the increase in fat mass, while muscle mass and skeletal robustness have little impact on excessive body mass. The handgrip strength in female judokas is not strictly depend on the contribution of muscle mass.

Key words: anthropometry, body composition, hand strength, somatotypes