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By studying this chapter, you should be able to do the following:

  1. Describe the incidence of amenorrhea in female athletes versus the general population.

  2. List those factors thought to contribute to “athletic” amenorrhea.

  3. Discuss the general recommendations for training during menstruation.

  4. List the general guidelines for exercise during pregnancy.

  5. Define the term female athlete triad. 6. Discuss the possibility that chronic exercise presents a danger to (1) the cardiopulmonary system or (2) the musculoskeletal system of children.

  6. List those conditions in individuals with type 1 diabetes that might limit their participation in a vigorous training program.

  7. Explain the rationale for the selection of an insulin injection site for people with type 1 diabetes prior to a training session.

  8. List the precautions that people with asthma should take during a training session.

  9. Discuss the question “does exercise promote seizures in people with epilepsy?”

  10. Graph the change in muscle mass and muscular strength that occur with age.

  11. Discuss the factors that contribute to the age-related changes in muscle mass and muscular strength.

  12. Discuss the impact of aging on VO2 max in both men and women.

  13. Outline the factor(s) that are responsible for the age-related decline in endurance performance.


Factors Important to Women Involved in Vigorous Training

  • Exercise and Menstrual Disorders

  • Training and Menstruation

  • The Female Athlete and Eating Disorders

  • Eating Disorders: Final Comments

  • Bone Mineral Disorders and the Female Athlete

  • Exercise During Pregnancy

  • Risk of Knee Injury in Female Athletes

Sports Conditioning for Children

  • Training and the Cardiopulmonary System

  • Training and the Musculoskeletal System

  • Progress in Pediatric Exercise Science

  • Competitive Training for People with Diabetes

Training for People with Asthma

Epilepsy and Physical Training

  • Does Exercise Promote Seizures?

  • Risk of Injury Due to Seizures

Exercise Performance and Training for Masters Athletes

  • Age-Related Changes in Muscular Strength

  • Aging and Endurance Performance

  • Training Guidelines for Masters Athletes

Key Terms


anorexia nervosa

articular cartilage




female athlete triad

growth plate (epiphyseal plate)


The general physiological principles of exercise training to improve performance apply to anyone interested in improving athletic performance (see Chap. 20). However, when planning competitive training programs for special populations, several specific issues require individual consideration. For example, special training concerns exist for both the female athlete and children. Also, there are specific guidelines for the training of people with diabetes, asthma, or epilepsy. Finally, a growing number of masters athletes are competing in endurance events. How does aging affect their physiological capability and ability to train? This chapter addresses each of these issues. Let’s begin our discussion with the topic of exercise training for the female athlete.


The involvement of women in competitive athletics has increased markedly over the past several decades. Previously, many of the decisions regarding the participation of women in sports and exercise programs ...

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