In recent years, data on the effect of genes on the physical condition and performance of elite athletes have risen sharply.The study of genetic polymorphisms, that is, mutations, that could explain the differences in physical abilities and the results of training programs between individuals is now widespread.
The data so far from the study of DNA gene polymorphisms and their correlation with fitness characteristics in response to endurance / strength training have highlighted two groups of physical characteristics,cardiorespiratory and skeletal muscle function and support the use of genetic markers (detection of these mutations) to determine the appropriate exercise and lifestyle that lead to the optimization of athletic performance.In general, they confirm the basic principle that athletes may have a genetic predisposition for high performance in one area (speed / strength) at the expense of another (endurance).
Identifying the genetic background that affects an athlete’s ability to excel in one sport (eg sprint) rather than another (eg marathon) is important information that can be used to select the right sport and workout to maximize performance.While the genome of elite athletes, who have been distinguished in the respective sport globally, is being studied to identify polymorphisms, in reality these polymorphisms are common to the general population and are all carriers of some of them.What allows some individuals to stand out and stand out is not one or more polymorphisms but many such mutations that happen to coexist in some individuals.That is, the number of positive mutations is what determines the predisposition for increased performance.Each gene has a small share in the total heredity. In fact, adopting a single-gene philosophy would be incomplete and possibly misleading in sports.
Athletic performance is a multigene and multifactorial trait.Genetic testing is used in the development of genetic tests both for the selection of the appropriate sport at a young age and for the training of coaching guidance based on the specialized needs of the athlete.Mutations can also be detected to control the potential risk of injury to the tendons (eg Achilles tendon rupture) and bones (fractures), which prevents painful injuries during sports with proper training and prevention.The combination of genetics with specialized coaching is not just for professional athletes.
They concern all people who love sports and exercise is a way of life for them.Genetic testing allows parents and children to choose the right sport (endurance or strength) and those who exercise to adopt the right training while avoiding painful injuries.In combination with other predisposing tests, such as that of venous thrombosis control can be a protective shield for the athlete, through prevention always.
The possible predisposition to thrombosis is important information that imposes the administration of anticoagulant therapy in case of injuries that require surgery.Genetic testing for athletic performance and sports-related illnesses gives a lifetime advantage to anyone wishing to use the information “hidden” in the genes to adapt to their lifestyle, individual needs and abilities.
Athanasios Badekas is the Scientific Officer of the Orthopedic Department of the ORTHO REHAB CENTER, which is housed in the center of Glyfada. Our space, recently completely renovated, has been created in such a way as to meet the needs of our doctors and to offer a friendly and functional environment to our patients.
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