Female health in sport
Wednesday 8th May 14:30 - 15:25
The Female Athlete Triad describes the relationship between energy availability, bone health, and menstrual function and its effects on training, performance and health can be career ending. We need to recognise the signs and symptoms of the Female Athlete Triad, especially when low energy availability is linked to eating disorders and disordered eating. The need for proper nutrition and safe training practises need to be established and monitored closely in order to maintain the health of our female athletes. Strategies to optimise performance, whilst maintaining athlete health need to be developed and evaluated periodically. In particular, energy intake and expenditure need to taken into account when planning and implementing a training and competition programme, in order to avoid long term reproductive and skeletal damage. Moreover, Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S) is a newer concept, which goes beyond the Triad, to include the effects of low energy availability on numerous aspects of physiological functioning and health (almost 20 related outcomes). As such, athletes and practitioners need to be made aware and educated regarding RED-S and its potential associated outcomes.
Associate Professor Kirsty Elliott-Sale, Associate Professor at Female Physiology, Nottingham Trent University
Dr Elliott-Sale completed her undergraduate degree and PhD [Exercise Physiology] at Liverpool John Moores University. Her PhD examined the effects of female reproductive hormones on muscle strength and since then her work has mainly focused on female athletes. She worked as a Lecturer at Brunel University and the University of Brighton before undertaking a four-year Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship at Kings College London. Dr Elliott-Sale joined Nottingham Trent University (NTU) in September 2009. In addition to her research on female athletes [the Female Athlete Triad and Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport], her work in recent years has involved designing exercise interventions for weight management in overweight and obese pregnant and postpartum women. She is an Associate Professor [Reader] of Female Physiology and the Head of the Musculoskeletal Physiology Research Group at NTU.