Features of diving reflex in synchronized swimmers


Master student T.A. Zemlyanukhina1
PhD, Associate Professor T.V. Rybyakova2
Master student E.Yu. Podyacheva1
Dr. Biol. T.I. Baranova1
1Saint Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg
2Lesgaft National State University of Physical Education, Sport and Health, St. Petersburg

Objective of the study was to identify the features of diving reflex in synchronized swimmers.
Methods and structure of the study. Sampled for the study were 36 female synchronized swimmers of different sport qualifications (masters of sport and first-rank athletes). Their cardiovascular indices were analyzed.
Results and conclusions. We detected an inverse high correlation between the apnea duration, degree of bradycardia, and rate of its increase during immersion. Considering that the breathhold duration in synchronized swimming and the ease with which it is tolerated is essential for the performance of figures, it can be concluded that the most favorable type of reaction in this sport is an areactive one, characterized by a slight deceleration of the heart rate and moderate constriction of the peripheral vessels. Although the diving reflex performs a protective function during immersion, thus contributing to the economical oxygen consumption and preservation of the cerebral blood flow, during short-term immersion the strong vagal effects on the cardiac function realized at the moment of immersion and slowing down of the blood flow hindered mobilization of the functional reserves of the body. This may adversely affect the competitive results.
Therefore, the optimal type of cardiovascular response to diving in synchronized swimming was identified. The authors propose that evaluation of the cardiovascular response to diving should be included in the sports selection for synchronized swimming.

Keywords: synchronized swimmers, diving reflex, cardiovascular system, functional reserves of the body.


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