Data_Sheet_1_Physiological, Anthropometric, and Motor Characteristics of Elite Chinese Youth Athletes From Six Different Sports.csv

Several talent selection programs in elite sport schools are based on motor diagnostics for the purpose of recommending or transferring promising talents to general groups of sports; game sports, combat sports or endurance sports, and to more concrete sports such as gymnastics, skiing, or tennis. However, the predictive value of such testing is unclear. This study evaluated the concurrent validity of physiological performance prerequisites, body dimensions, as well as specific motor performances. The sample consisted of N = 97 youth athletes from all ninth grade classes of a Shanghai Elite Sport school belonging to six different sports including basketball (n = 7), fencing (n = 23), judo (n = 20), swimming (n = 10), table tennis (n = 15), and volleyball (n = 22). The performance diagnosis took place between September 2016 and March 2017, and comprised five physiological measurements of the heart rate at rest, vital capacity, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and hemoglobin concentration in the blood, eighteen anthropometric parameters, and two motor tests on back strength and complex reaction speed. The aim of the study was to investigate whether U15 age group athletes participating in six different sports already at this age show a sport specific anthropometric, motor performance, and physiological profile which is in line with the specific requirements of each of the sports. A discriminant analysis and a Neural Network (Multilayer Perceptron) were used to test whether it is possible to discriminate between athletes of the six sports and to assign each individual of the Under-15 athletes to his own sport on the basis of a unique profile of the morphological, motor, and physiological prerequisites. All diagnostic methods exhibited medium to high validity to discriminate between the six different sports. The relevance of the eighteen body dimensions, five physiological measures, and two motor tests for talent identification was confirmed.