2013, Volume 9, Issue 2

Demographic profile of combat sports athletes: A comparative analysis between genders and competitive achievement in London 2012



Katarzyna Sterkowicz-Przybycień1, Emerson Franchini2

1Department of Gymnastics, Institute of Sport, University School of Physical Education in Cracow
2Martial Arts and Combat Sports Research Group, Sport Department, School of Physical Education and Sport, University of São Paulo, Brazil, Sports Sciences Faculty, Universty of Montpellier, France


Author for correspondence: Emerson Franchini; Martial Arts and Combat Sports Research Group, Sport Department, School of Physical Education and Sport, University of São Paulo, Brazil, Sports Sciences Faculty, Universty of Montpellier, France; email: emersonfranchini[at]hotmail.com


Full text

Abstract

Background and Study Aim: Analysis of results in sports is essential in determination of the profile of a successful athlete. The aim of the study was the demographic profile of athletes who competed in combat sports at the last Olympic Games.
Material and Methods: The official documents of the XXX Olympic Games from tournaments of combat sports were analyzed. Age, height and body mass of 699 participants and five combat sports events (three events were considered in fencing) were considered. Body mass index (BMI), height–weight ratio (HWR) and ectomorphy somatotype component were calculated. Two-way ANOVA was used to compare combat sports and genders.
Results: The youngest subjects in the group of women were taekwondoists, who differed significantly in age from epeests, foilists and judoists. In the group of men, the taekwondoists differed significantly in age from the epeests, i.e., taekwondo representatives were younger than the epeests. The judoists were shorter than those who practised épée, sabre or taekwondo, whereas body mass in judoists was higher than in foilists and taekwondoists. Judoists presented significantly higher BMI than epeests, foilists and sabrists. Taekwondoists had higher HWR compared to judoists. Judoists presented lower scores in ectomorphy compared with epeests, foilists and taekwondo athletes.
Conclusions: Male and female combat sports Olympic athletes differed in terms of their age, height, body mass, HWR and proportionality. The characteristics of world elite female and male athletes can be adopted as model/optimal values and used when searching, in general population, young talents to be trained in combat sports.


Key words: anthropometry, body mass, body mass index, height, olympic athletes