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Keynote Lectures

Perspectives on Innovation in Sport Engineering - Stochastic Resonance and their Application in Modern Training and Rehabilitation
Dietmar Schmidtbleicher, Goethe University, Germany

Monitoring Brain Activity during Exercise
Romain Meeusen, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium

How Sports can Create New Knowledge at a Technical University that Claim not Doing Research in Sport Science
Christian Finnsgård, Research, Centre for Sport and technology, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden


Perspectives on Innovation in Sport Engineering - Stochastic Resonance and their Application in Modern Training and Rehabilitation

Dietmar Schmidtbleicher
Goethe University

Brief Bio
Prof. Dr. Dr. h. c. Dietmar Schmidtbleicher, Head and Chair for Sport Sciences at the Institute of Sport Sciences at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University Frankfurt/Main in Germany. Main topics in his work are strength and power training, neuronal and muscular adaptations after training, diagnostics and regulation of training and the development of measurement devices. Furthermore he developed a method for training in high performance sports and rehabilitation using stochastic resonance.He published more than 400 articles and is a leading expert for strength and power training especially for top level athletes.

The first part of the presentation shows some physiological results from research in the filed of adaptation of the nervous system. It could be shown in the late 70th and 80th that reflexes in human beings are no phylogenetical relict but still contributing strong in a lot of sport specific movements as well as in activities of daily life. Moreover those reflexes can be enhanced by training. Best effects can be produced by stochastic resonance stimuli compared to sinusoidal perturbations.
In the second part the development of different training devices will be presented with a solution of a stochastic resonance training (SRT). The following constants deal with the possibilities of the application of SRT against disturbances in posture control, equilibrium problems etc. as they appear at chronical neuronal diseases like M. Parkinson, Multiple Sclerosis, Spinal Cord Injuries or orthopedical leasons.



Monitoring Brain Activity during Exercise

Romain Meeusen
Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Brief Bio
Prof Dr Romain Meeusen, (PhD) is head of the department of Human Physiology at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and professor at the School of Public Health, Tropical Medicine and Rehabilitation Sciences, James Cook University, Queensland, Australia. His research interest is focussed on “Exercise and the Brain in Health & Disease” exploring the influence of neurotransmitters on human performance, training, rehabilitation. Recent work is on Thermoregulation, Neurogenesis, Cognition, nutrition in health & disease. He teaches on exercise physiology, training & coaching and sports physiotherapy. Romain published ca 500 articles and book chapters in peer-reviewed journals, 18 books on sport physiotherapy, and gave lectures at more than 900 national and international conferences. He is past President of the Belgian Society of Kinesiology, the Belgian Federation of Sports Physiotherapy, and the society of kinesiology Belgium. He is former Board member of the European College of Sport Science ECSS (2000-2013), and of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) (2010-2013). In 2009 he received the Belgian ‘Francqui Chair’ at the Université Libre de Bruxelles on ‘Exercise and the Brain’. He is also holder of two named lecturing chairs at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. He is director of the Human Performance lab of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, where he works with several top athletes, and is scientific advisor of the ‘Lotto Cycling Institute’ (Lotto-Soudal professional cycling team).

Exercise has an powerful influence on the brain. It is now well established that exercise will have a positive effect on brain health. Physical exercise can preserve cognitive function in elderly populations, promote functional recovery after central nervous system (CNS) traumatic injury, and induce neurogenesis in the adult CNS. Physical activity also increases trophic factor production in select regions of the brain. It is known that exercise increases brain neurotransmission and that repeated exercise (training) will influence baseline neurotransmitter release. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a crucial effector of experience-dependent plasticity. It is a neurotrophin that acts as a regulator of the survival, growth, and differentiation of neurons.
Physical activity and, in particular, acute exercise and training seem to be key interventions to trigger the processes through which neurotrophins mediate energy metabolism and, in turn, neural plasticity. In search of mechanisms underlying plasticity and brain health, exercise is known to induce a cascade of molecular and cellular processes that support (brain) plasticity. BDNF could play a crucial role in these induced mechanisms. Therefore, since the early nineties, studies started to investigate the effects of physical activity, acute exercise and/or training on levels of BDNF. The first human studies examined the effects of exercise on peripheral BDNF in subjects with a neurodegenerative disease (i.e., multiple sclerosis patients) in order to explore the restorative potential of exercise in this particular disease. A dozen of other studies on the effects of acute exercise and/or training on BDNF in humans have been carried out, of which most concern healthy subjects. The purpose of the current paper is to provide an overview of the studies we performed on effect of physical activity on neurotransmission, thermoregulation and indicators of neurogenesis such as BDNF.
Recently, new techniques emerge in order to measure brain activity during exercise. Techniques such as fMRI, EEG, NIRS etc. are helping to further elucidate the possible mechanisms behind the positive effects of exercise on the brain.



How Sports can Create New Knowledge at a Technical University that Claim not Doing Research in Sport Science

Christian Finnsgård
Research, Centre for Sport and technology, Chalmers University of Technology

Brief Bio
Christian Finnsgård has master’s degrees from Chalmers University of Technology and University of Gothenburg, and a Ph.D. in Technology Management and Economics. He is working for SSPA Sweden AB as a senior researcher and project manager for research projects in supply chain management, with special interests in the maritime sector. In sports, he is the director for a Centre for Sports and Technology at Chalmers University of Technology, coordinating Chalmers’ research efforts in sports. In terms of his own research efforts in sports the focus is within sailing were he also has a background as a national team member and world champion in the Star class.

The lecture will provide examples of a different approach to research in sports combined with technology. Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden has for the last few years endeavored into research using sports as an application area for applied research. The research efforts has utilised the way that sports are organised in Sweden, with the sports confederations and clubs providing the problem areas to base the research around.
For the university several aspects have been key in the research efforts. Chalmers will not do research in sport science, but all researchers will stay in their respective area of expertise.
The lecture will focus on how this approach strengthens our research in diverse areas such as the automotive industry (with examples from production logistics and crash safety) for the forest industry (composites and cellulose research) and astronomy.