A transversal pilot study of the sports nutrition awareness in basketball. From the academic to the elite
Escribano Ott, Ignacio
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Despite the fact that nutrition represents an accessible recovery method for most basketball teams and players, it is usual to observe nutritional behaviour mistakes among them. It has been theorised that this behaviour is influenced by the habits acquired based on the individual's knowledge. In addition, age seems to be a direct factor influencing this behaviour. We have not found any previous studies carried out on this topic, specifically in basketball. Therefore, the main aim of this study was to carry out a descriptive, cross-sectional and observational analysis of the knowledge and practices of sports nutrition in basketball players, in categories of under 18 (n=69), elite (n=21), and non-elite (n=14), offering a diagnosis and a practical proposal for future intervention strategies. The participants (n=104) completed an anonymous online survey to analyse their sports nutrition knowledge and practices. Results are as follows nutrients (U-18: 5.15 vs NON-ELITE: 5.95 vs ELITE: 5.12), hydration (U-18: 4.72 vs NON-ELITE: 5.79 vs ELITE: 5.18), recovery (U-18: 4.19, vs NON-ELITE: 5.52 vs ELITE 4.5), body mass management (U-18: 4.77 vs NON-ELITE: 5.14 vs ELITE: 4.79) and supplementation (U-18: 2.57 vs NON-ELITE: 2.53 vs ELITE: 3.38). Related to nutrient block, significant differences in correlation model were found between categories (p=0.03) with a high effect size (d=0.82). Regarding nutritional practices, nutritional training adjustment (U-18: 81.16% vs NON-ELITE: 78.57% vs ELITE: 76.19%), pre-training (U-18: 66.66% vs NON-ELITE: 21.42% vs ELITE: 19.04) post-training (U-18: 57.97% vs NON-ELITE: 71.42% vs ELITE: 71.42), pre-competition (U-18: 10.45% vs NON-ELITE: 28.57% vs ELITE: 38.89%) post competition (U-18: 46.38% vs NON-ELITE: 35.71% vs ELITE: 47.62%). In view of the results obtained, we can conclude that the knowledge of sport-specific nutrition in U-18 and senior basketball players is insufficient through all the categories.