Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Brian Rider, Kinesiology; Valerie Smith-Hale, MS. Wayne State University

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BACKGROUND: “Internal load” represents the physiological and psychological stress experienced by athletes during training and competition. The ability to accurately monitor and assess an athlete’s internal load can be valuable for both training purposes and injury prevention. Advances in wearable technology provide the ability to objectively quantify an athlete’s internal load via the continuous measurement of heart rate (HR). This HR data can be used to determine an athlete’s training impulse (TRIMP) which is a validated measure of internal load. An athlete’s ability to self-monitor their perceived exertion during practice (sRPE) might also prove helpful in assessing internal load. However, despite the technological advances and widespread use of wearable devices to monitor physiological responses to exercise, there is a lack of research examining the internal load female athletes experience over the course of a collegiate season. Additionally, it is important to understand how an athlete’s sRPE correlates to their TRIMP scores. Such information may inform aspects of training to improve performance and avoid injury or burnout.

METHODS: Members of the Hope Women’s Basketball team wore HR monitors during practice. HR data was collected continuously throughout each practice. At the end of each practice players rated their level of exertion (sRPE). RESULTS: Using this data we aimed to examine the changes in TRIMP and sRPE scores over the duration of the 2021-2022 season. Additionally, we examined these two measurements to see how the athletes’ subjective experience (sRPE) would correlate to the objective assessment (TRIMP) of their internal load. Final data will not be available until after the women’s season. Results will be presented at the Celebration for Undergraduate Research.

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Kinesiology Commons