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Are Male Judokas with Visual Impairments Training Properly? Findings from an Observational Study
Abstract: Structured Abstract: Introduction: One aim of the study was to describe the temporal structure of judo combat among male judokas with visual impairments. Another aim was to determine the possible differences between the judokas with visual impairments and sighted male judokas to determine whether judokas with visual impairments need specific training to achieve their maximum performance level. Methods: Observational methodology was used in 184 combats (n = 92 male senior judokas with visual impairments). A T-Patterns study (THEME) and a descriptive statistical analysis (SPSS) were conducted. Results: The results showed that most of the observed combats ended before the regulation time was over (81%). The temporal structure observed in judokas with visual impairments was as follows: total combat time: 4 minutes, 26 seconds; total pause time: 2 minutes, 38 seconds; total stand-up fight time: 1 minute, 22 seconds; and total ground fight time: 60 seconds. The number of sequences were as follows: 6.9 pause sequences with a duration of 19.6 seconds each, 12.4 work sequences with a duration of 22 seconds each, 7.9 work sequences in stand-up judo with a duration of 11.7 seconds each, and 4.5 work sequences in ground judo with a duration of 12.9 seconds each. Discussion: The combats' mean values revealed that, compared to male sighted judokas, judokas with visual impairments perform shorter work sequences and need longer pause sequences because of their impairment. Implications for Practitioners: These data indicate that the temporal structure of judo combat in athletes with visual impairments is different from the temporal structure of judo combat in sighted athletes, which indicates that the appropriate training for each group should be different. This article describes a specific temporal structure that is applicable to traditional judo training methods, fits these athletes' needs, and is available for coaches who train judokas with visual impairments.
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