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Weight-to-height ratio and aerobic capacity in 15-year-old male taekwondo martial artists.



Martial arts are growing in popularity throughout the whole world. Their beneficial influence on physical development and fitness is noteworthy. Martial arts are an attractive form of physical recreation, constitute a perfect means for combating stress, and have a positive effect on general health, including during rehabilitation.


The aim of this study is to assess physical development and aerobic capacity in boys who practice taekwondo and to determine the relationships between results of a fitness test and particular parameters of physical development.


Study participants comparised 51 boys aged 15 years who practiced taekwondo (with training experience ranging from 1 to 6 years). VolkovĀ“s modification of the Harvard Step Test was used to assess body height and body mass. BMI was also calculated. Centile charts were used to assess weight-to-height ratio and the level of measured parameters. BMI was analyzed according to the Cole classification system. Dispersion was calculated using a coefficient of variation. The Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient between selected parameters was also calculated.


Most study participants had normal BMI, but 30% showed overweight and 13% showed underweight or emaciation. Weight-to-height ratio differed significantly from the norm in 33% of the boys when compared to centile charts. All participants had average aerobic capacity. However, when weight-to-height ratio was compared to the results of the Harvard Step Test, boys with normal body proportions performed much better in the test than boys with abnormal body mass (p<0.05).


Study participants showed abnormal weight-to-height ratio mainly in terms of overweight. The boys had greater body height and body mass compared to the general Polish population. Aerobic capacity differed considerably between participants.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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