Early Access

The articles shown below have been posted as Early Access Release articles. These articles have been peer reviewed, copyedited, and reviewed by the authors. Additional changes or corrections may appear in these articles when they are published in a future issue of the “Pedagogy of Physical Culture and Sports". When articles are published in an issue, it will be removed from this page and appear in that issue’s table of contents.


  • Cytokine responses to small sided games in young soccer players
    Veysel Böge | Selcuk University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7466-1173
    Patlar Suleyman | Selcuk University | https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3817-3575
    Mehtap Bekir | Selcuk University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8639-1983
    Early Online 2022-06-06 | pages: 222 - 227 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract  The aim of this study was to determine of cytokine responses to small-sided games (SSG) in young soccer players
    This study included fourteen male soccer players (14.5± 0.6 years). Soccer players are divided into 2 groups as 3x3 and 4x4 groups. 3x3 group players played 2x6x1 minutes small-sided games in 25x20 m area and 3x6x2 minutes small-sided games in 30x25 m area for 4x4 group players. Blood samples were collected at baseline [pre-training (PRE)] and at immediately after the exercise [post-training (POST)] to measure Interleukin-6 (IL-6), Tumor Necrosis Factor (Tnf-α), and Lactate (La) parameters. And also Heart Rate (HR) and rating of perceived exertion (RPE) determined both PRE and POST.
    In the study, POST levels of La, IL-6, Tnf-α, HR, and RPE both in 3x3 group and in 4x4 group were found to be significantly higher than PRE (P<0.05). When the POST parameters of both groups were examined, only the Tnf-α level increased significantly in the 4x4 group (p<0.05), while no difference was found in the other parameters (p>0.05).
    SSG which is acutely applied in young soccer players, both 3x3 group and 4x4 group is are similar. However with a more players can increase tnf-α released and this can effect performance as negatively in young soccer players.

  • The effect of 8 weeks plyometric exercise on physical and motoric features of mental disabled
    Ahmet Kurtoğlu | Bandirma Onyedi Eylul University | http://orcid.org/0000-0002-9292-5419
    Bekir Çar | Bandirma Onyedi Eylul University | http://orcid.org/0000-0001-7422-9543
    Nurettin Konar | Bandirma Onyedi Eylul University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2542-7524
    Early Online 2022-06-30 | pages: 228 - 232 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract Background and Study Aim. Physical activity for disabled people is a long-debated issue. The number of studies examining the effects of alternative exercise programs on the physical and motor outcomes of people with intellectual disabilities is limited. For this reason, the purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of 8-week plyometric exercises on some physical and motor characteristics of mentally retarded people.
    Material and Methods. The method of this study is the experimental method, one of the quantitative research methods. The sample of the study consists of 24 moderately and mildly mentally retarded students aged 11-17 years old studying at a special vocational school. Participants completed a plyometric training program 3 days per week for 8 weeks. Before the training program, height, weight, BMI, vertical jump, sit and reach, standing long jump, circumference measurements, handgrip strength, shuttle test, leg strength, and back strength were compared with those after the training program. The SPSS 25 program was used for the statistical operations. The Wilcoxon test, one of the non-parametric tests, was used to compare the data.
    Results. As a result of statistical analysis, significant differences were found in height, weight, vertical jump, sit and reach, handgrip strength, shuttle test, leg strength, and back strength of the participants before and after the training program (p < 0.05). There was no significant difference between the body circumference measurements and BMI results (p > 0.05).
    Conclusions. When evaluating the results of the study, it was found that plyometric exercises have a positive effect on the physical and motor characteristics of the intellectually disabled people.
  • Effect of Physical Exertion oThe effect of physical exertion on the concentration of copper and blood pressure in athletesn the Concentration of Copper and Blood Pressure in Athletes
    Mohammed N. Shalaby | Suez Canal University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0228-3003
    Mona M.A. Sakoury | Imam Abd Al-Rahman Al- Faisal University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0228-3003
    Haitham F.M. Akl | Imam Abd Al-Rahman Al- Faisal University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2704-4017
    Rasha H.A. Hassan | Alexandria University | https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3076-0302
    Hana A.S. Ababtain | Imam Abd Al-Rahman Al- Faisal University | https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4124-045X
    Ahmad Alghamdi | Imam Abd Al-Rahman Al- Faisal University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2590-9152
    Early Online 2022-08-02 | pages: 260 - 264 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract Background and Study Aim. Several mineral elements are necessary for the athlete's body, which significantly impact the development of sports achievements because of their active role in bringing internal balance to the athlete's body. The study aims to determine the concentration of copper in the blood before and after the implementation of physical exertion at a level of 180 pulse/min on middle-distance runners.
    Material and Methods. Twelve athletes who are team members at Egyptian clubs were chosen deliberately as a research sample. The study participants were at the end of their special preparation. The experiment was conducted between July 12, 2021, and July 14, 2021, on the research sample, resting after exerting physical effort by running on a treadmill at a speed of 10 km / h. The runner continued at this speed for 3 minutes, after which the device's speed increased by 2 km / h every minute until reaching a heart rate of 180 pulse/ min.
    Results. The mineral differences in the copper element are attributed to the immediate induced by physical exertion by increasing the copper element in the blood within the normal level. This causes many changes and responses within the body cells. The copper element plays a significant role in oxidation and reduction processes via enzymes that require the copper element to produce energy in the cells and tissues due to the body's exposure to physical exertion. Athletes' exposure to physical exertion causes copper-dependent enzymes to produce energy in cells and tissues due to the element's requirement.
    Conclusions. Copper affected the physical effort of middle-distance runners at a heart rate of 180 pulse/min. In addition,  Middle-distance runners' blood pressure (systolic and diastolic) was affected by the physical exertion at a heart rate of 180 rpm.
  • The effects of deep breathing on the mental toughness of athletes in Puchong Fuerza football club
    Fakrul Hazely Ismail | Sultan Idris Education University | http://orcid.org/0000-0001-9629-5779
    Zulakbal Abd Karim | Sultan Idris Education University | http://orcid.org/0000-0001-9883-5767
    Nuraliah Amani Rozali | Sultan Idris Education University | http://orcid.org/0000-0002-3841-5071
    Ramesh Ram Ramalu | Sultan Idris Education University | http://orcid.org/0000-0001-6080-6100
    Early Online 2022-08-02 | pages: 265 - 269 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract Background and Study Aim.  A group of psychological traits that are essential to achieving peak performance are referred to collectively as mental toughness. One of the most significant  psychological traits linked to sports success, according to athletes, coaches, and sport psychologists, is mental toughness. This study aims to identify the effects of deep breathing on the mental toughness of athletes in Puchong Fuerza Football Club who played in M3 Football League, the Malaysia's third-tier football league.
    Material and Methods. The research was conducted experimentally with two sessions which include pre-test and post-test. Mental Toughness Questionnaire 48 (MTQ48) and deep breathing techniques were used in this research. Data findings were analyzed to answer the research questions and null hypothesis. Hypothesis testing was used, and inferential statistics analyzed the data. Paired sample t-test was used to identify the effects of deep breathing techniques on mental toughness scores in pre-test and post-test.
    Results.  The analysis results showed that data on mental toughness was negative. It proved by the mean score difference of the pre-test and post-test, in which there were increments of mental toughness score after applying deep breathing technique. Meanwhile, there was a significant difference in mean scores between players toward their mental toughness based on pre-test and post-test results.
    Conclusions. Therefore, the deep breathing technique has relations with performance and psychological outcomes and can be use as a pre-match mental preparation. It is suggested that coaches and athletes may include the deep breathing technique in training program. The players need to undergo psychological skill training such as deep breathing technique to improve their mental toughness and to ensure that anxiety is at an optimal level in order to achieve excellent performance in competitions.
  • The effects of small-sided games versus traditional training on physical fitness and skills among Under-12 hockey players
    Faizal Izwan M. Tajudin | Sultan Idris Education University | https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6651-9751
    Nor Fazila A. Malek | Sultan Idris Education University | https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8998-228X
    Abdul Muiz N. Azmi | Sultan Idris Education University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2405-1369
    Kevin Tan | Management and Science University | https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3676-5614
    Rajkumar K. Vasanthi | INTI International University | https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6866-8224
    Fariba H. Abadi | Sultan Idris Education University | https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9273-2572
    Ali Md Nadzalan | Sultan Idris Education University | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0621-2245
    Early Online 2022-08-02 | pages: 270 - 275 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract Background and Study Aim. Despite many evidences showed the effectiveness of small sided games (SSG) to be included in sport training programs, majority of the study was done in soccer, while is very limited in hockey. The purpose of this study was to determine and compare the effects of small sided games and traditional training on physical fitness components (cardiovascular endurance, power, speed) and skills (dribbling, hitting, passing) among Under-12 hockey players.
    Material and Methods. A total of 36 primary schools’ male students aged below 12 that represent their district were randomly divided into three groups; i) 3x3, ii) 4x4 and iii) traditional training (TT). The yo-yo test (cardiovascular endurance), standing long jump test (power) and 30m sprint test (speed) were conducted to measure level of physical fitness performance while the skills of the players was tested based on the skills of dribbling, hitting and passing. Pre- and post-tests were conducted on all fitness and skill level before and after 8 week intervention period. Mixed between within analysis of variances (ANOVA) was used to analyze the differences in physical fitness and skills performance between and within the three groups.
    Results. The results of this study showed all groups managed to improve their physical fitness and skills in the post test. However, the 3x3 and 4x4 SSG have better improvement compared to TT in physical fitness while no significant differences were found in skills tests.
    Conclusions. In conclusion, SSG interventions were found to be more effective in improving physical fitness but not in terms of skills. Coaches are encouraging to implement SSG in their training program in order to improve both physical and skills among hockey players.
  • Optimization of body balance indices according to Body Mass Index categories during physical education lessons for university students
    George D. Mocanu | "Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3534-5055
    Gabriel Murariu | “Dunarea de Jos” University of Galati | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7107-2007
    Vladimir Potop | University of Pitesti | https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8571-2469
    Early Online 2022-08-06 | pages: 233 - 243 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract Background and Study Purpose. Body stability is an important factor in the manifestation of human motor skills. The purpose of the research is to evaluate the efficiency of balance exercises, applied for 28 weeks, with a frequency of one activity / week, on a group of undergraduate students of the “Dunărea de Jos” University of Galați.
    Material and Methods. 195 subjects participated (99 males and 96 females), divided for analysis into 3 groups (underweight, N = 21, age = 20.16 ± .38, BMI = 17.46 ± .20); (normal weight, N = 111, age = 20.30 ± .21, BMI = 21.70 ± .17); (overweight / obese, N = 63, age = 19.90 ± .18, BMI = 30.69 ± .61). The tests were applied at 3 distinct times: initial T1 at the beginning of the academic year, intermediate T2 towards the end of semester 1 and final T3 at the end of semester 2. 3 static balance assessment tests were used (One leg standing test with closed eyes, Stork test and Flamingo test), respectively 4 tests to evaluate the dynamic balance (Bass test, Functional reach test, Walk and turn field sobriety test and Fukuda test).
    Results. ANOVA with repeated measurements and the differences between the test moments highlight in most cases values ​​of F associated with significant thresholds (p <0.05), so there is an improvement in results for all 3 groups. The differences between T1 and T2 tests are larger than those between T2 and T3, so for almost all tests the progress is higher in the first semester, and in semester 2 there is a slight reduction, as a result of adapting to the proposed exercises. Even if they progress significantly, the group of overweight people has obviously weaker average results than normal weight and underweight people, signaling numerous individual cases that have problems in maintaining static balance and commit errors in dynamic balance tests. The better performances of the underweight in 3 cases (One leg standing test, Flamingo test Fukuda test and Walk and turn field sobriety test) cannot be generalized due to their small number compared to the other 2 groups, and this aspect can be considered as a new direction of investigation.
    Conclusions. There are premises for a favorable evolution of the balance indices for the group tested in this age group, but it must be taken into account that the low initial fitness level (generated by the lack of concerns for a lifestyle based on physical activities) is a factor that facilitated these less spectacular advances, but still statistically significant.
  • Main research areas in kickboxing investigations: an analysis of the scientific articles of the Web of Science Core Collection
    Leonid V. Podrigalo | Kharkiv State Academy of Physical Culture | http://orcid.org/0000-0002-7893-524X
    Keo Shi | Kharkiv State Academy of Physical Culture | http://orcid.org/0000-0003-3092-0548
    Olha O. Podrihalo | Kharkiv State Academy of Physical Culture | http://orcid.org/0000-0003-1519-5632
    Olexandr A. Volodchenko | Kharkov State Academy of Physical Culture | http://orcid.org/0000-0002-1189-3524
    Olexandr I. Halashko | Kharkiv State Academy of Physical Culture | https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0829-2186
    Early Online 2022-08-11 | pages: 244 - 259 | https://doi.org/
    Abstract Background and Study Aim. Combat sports are among the most popular sports nowadays. Scientific support of combat sports is one of the urgent tasks of modern sports science. The purpose of this article is an analytical analysis of studies devoted to kickboxing.
    Material and methods. The bibliometric database Web of Science Core Collection (WoS) is analyzed. 194 articles that met the search criteria were selected for the primary analysis. We used bibliometric methods for processing the information received in the context of kickboxing. The VOSviewer 1.6.18 software was used: keyword analysis method and direct citation analysis with the construction of bibliometric maps, visualization of cluster density, and citation weights.
    Results. The constructed bibliometric maps made it possible to identify the leading thematic areas of research, the most popular areas of research in this area. They can be divided into sports and rehabilitation and recreational areas. In a sports context, these include the performance of technical and tactical elements of kickboxing, the study of the physiological characteristics of combat sports athletes; assessment of the main physical qualities and analysis of the adaptive potential of athletes; the study of biochemical and features of homeostasis, the state of the cardiorespiratory system; highlighting factors important for winning competitions. In the rehabilitation context, kickboxing is used to optimize the functional state, recover from injuries, and improve the quality of life of patients with chronic diseases. The use of the VOSviewer software, version 1.6.18, made it possible to conduct a comprehensive analysis of the problem, to determine the priority scientific directions in this area. In sports, this is an analysis of the technical and tactical indicators of athletes, the time spent on their implementation, the study of the metabolic characteristics of combat sports athletes, and the assessment of their physical qualities.
    Conclusions. The conducted bibliometric analysis of publications on the problem of kickboxing confirms the relevance of this area of sports science. There is a lack of research on a comprehensive study of success, monitoring the state of kickboxing athletes. These directions should be recognized as the most relevant in this area.