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Differences in pacing of cross-country skiers by nationality - The example of Vasaloppet 2004-2017


Nikolaidis, Pantelis Theodoros; Knechtle, Beat (2019). Differences in pacing of cross-country skiers by nationality - The example of Vasaloppet 2004-2017. Research in Sports Medicine, 27(4):485-496.

Abstract

It has been previously observed that athletes of certain origin nationality dominate particular sports; however, this phenomenon has been less studied in cross-country (XC) skiing, especially with regards to performance-related aspects, such as pacing. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of nationality on pacing strategies of XC skiers who finished the "Vasaloppet" from 2004 to 2017. We studied 183,919 finishers (19,465 women and 164,454 men), classified into 15 nationalities, i.e. nationalities with number of finishers larger than 0.25% of the total number of finishers. In women, athletes from Russia (7:47:46 h:min:s) were the fastest and athletes from Denmark (10:01:03 h:min:s) the slowest (p < 0.001, η = 0.057). In men, athletes from Russia (6:33:03 h:min:s) were the fastest and athletes from Denmark (9:03:27 h:min:s) the slowest (p < 0.001, η = 0.069). In women and men, a small nationality× split interaction on speed was observed (p < 0.001, η = 0.016-0.019) with Russians presenting a more even pacing compared to their slower counterparts. It was concluded that fast nationalities present a more even pacing, which should be attributed to the general trend of fast athletes for a more even pacing.

Abstract

It has been previously observed that athletes of certain origin nationality dominate particular sports; however, this phenomenon has been less studied in cross-country (XC) skiing, especially with regards to performance-related aspects, such as pacing. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of nationality on pacing strategies of XC skiers who finished the "Vasaloppet" from 2004 to 2017. We studied 183,919 finishers (19,465 women and 164,454 men), classified into 15 nationalities, i.e. nationalities with number of finishers larger than 0.25% of the total number of finishers. In women, athletes from Russia (7:47:46 h:min:s) were the fastest and athletes from Denmark (10:01:03 h:min:s) the slowest (p < 0.001, η = 0.057). In men, athletes from Russia (6:33:03 h:min:s) were the fastest and athletes from Denmark (9:03:27 h:min:s) the slowest (p < 0.001, η = 0.069). In women and men, a small nationality× split interaction on speed was observed (p < 0.001, η = 0.016-0.019) with Russians presenting a more even pacing compared to their slower counterparts. It was concluded that fast nationalities present a more even pacing, which should be attributed to the general trend of fast athletes for a more even pacing.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of General Practice
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
Health Sciences > Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
Language:English
Date:2 October 2019
Deposited On:12 Oct 2018 09:36
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 07:50
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:1543-8627
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/15438627.2018.1523166
PubMed ID:30260255

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