25th Mar 2024

Introduction: Meeting moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) guidelines may not enough to counteract the negative cardiometabolic effects of prolonged sitting time. Athletes involved in diverse sports often comply with 60 minutes per day in MVPA guidelines proposed by World Health Organization, benefiting physical fitness (PF) levels. However, they also often engage in more sedentary activities. We aimed to investigate the impact of practicing at least a second sport (SP2) and sitting time (ST) on PF levels in female volleyball players.
Methods: This study comprises 89 female volleyball players aged 12 to 30 years (15.7±2.6 years). PF was assessed considering three components: muscular (the counter-movement jump, handgrip-strength test, standing-broad jump and step-approach jump), cardiorespiratory fitness (three-minute-step test) and motor component (T-test, shuttle run, and 30-meter run). Individual z-scores, adjusted for age, were computed for each test. Subsequently, aggregated z-scores for motor, muscular, cardiorespiratory fitness and overall PF were derived by summing the scores from the corresponding tests. Body fat percentage (BF%) was evaluated using a bioelectrical impedance analysis. Sports participation and ST were obtained through questionnaire. Linear regression models were using to analyse the links between SP2 and ST and each PF component as well as overall PF. All models were adjusting for BF%.
Results: The prevalence of players exclusively playing volleyball is 90% (N=80) and the mean time spent sitting is 11.22±0.37 hours. Athletes who participate at least two sports tend to have higher overall PF levels (β=3.448±1.405, p=0.016) and higher motor fitness (β=1.874±0.725, p=0.012) compared to those who practice only volleyball. No association was found between ST and overall PF or PF components (p>0.05).
Conclusions: Engaging in at least a second sport might enhance the intensity of PA which could potentially contribute to improved overall PF and motor fitness. Sitting time does not impact physical fitness levels in Volleyball Players.

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