Journal Title (Medline/Pubmed accepted abbreviation): J. Intl. Soc. Sports Nutr.
First Page: 13
Background: Fencing is a combat sport that requires both aerobic and anaerobic activity. Many Kuwaiti fencers are not educated on healthy nutritional practices to maximize health and performance in their sport.
Research goals: To collect data on nutritional practices and physiological profiles (body mass, fat percentage, blood lipid profile) and compare them to international measures.
Subjects: Fifteen male, national-class fencers age 21.5 ± 2.6 y.
Experimental design:field study (no intervention)
Protocol:Body composition was assessed via BODPOD and calculation of BMI. In order to assess diet habits, athletes completed 3-day dietary records (two training days and one rest day). Lastly, blood samples were collected after an overnight fast for assessment of total serum cholesterol, triglycerides, high-, low-, and very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and hemoglobin. VO2max was determined on a treadmill.
Despite the fencers’ healthy body composition, their diet was very poor (high in saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium; low in dietary fiber). This diet may lead to heart disease and other health problems later in life. Nutrition should be a key component of any athlete’s lifestyle and it is important for coaches to assure that athletes understand nutritional recommendations and aid them in implementing them. Poor nutritional practices may lead to suboptimal performance, and often times it is unknown how improving the diet of an athlete could further improve athletic performance that is already well developed.