Scaling left ventricular mass in adolescent female soccer players

Diogo V. Martinho, João Valente-dos-santos, Manuel J. Coelho-e-silva, Arturo O. Gutiérrez, João P. Duarte, Pedro Lourenço-farinha, Leonardo G. O. Luz, João Gonçalves-santos, Dalmo R. L. Machado, Neiva Leite, Jorge Conde, Joaquim M. Castanheira, Sean P. Cumming, Lauren B. Sherar, Robert M. Malina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (SciVal)


Background: The aim of the study was to examine the contribution of chronological age (CA), skeletal maturation, training experience and concurrent body size descriptors, to inter-individual variance in left ventricular mass (LVM) among female adolescent soccer players. Methods: The sample included 228 female soccer players 11.8-17.1 years. Training experience defined as years of participation in competitive soccer (range 2-9 years), was obtained by interview. Stature, body mass and skinfolds (triceps, medial calf) were measured. Fat mass was estimated; Fat-free mass was derived. LVM was assessed by echocardiography. Skeletal maturity status was as the difference of skeletal age (SA, Fels method) minus CA. Results: Fat-free mass was the most prominent single predictor of LVM (R2 = 36.6%). It was associated with an allometric coefficient close to linearity (k = 0.924, 95%CI: 0.737 to 1.112). A significant multiplicative allometric model including body mass, fat-free mass, CA, training experience and skeletal maturity status was also obtained (R = 0.684; R2 = 46.2%). Conclusion: Stature has limitations as a valid size descriptor of LVM. Body mass, fat-free mass, training experience, CA, body mass and skeletal maturity status were relevant factors contributing to inter-individual variability in LVM.

Original languageEnglish
Article number157
JournalBMC Pediatrics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 13 Apr 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Author(s).


  • Cardiac function
  • Female athletes
  • Growth
  • Scaling
  • Skeletal age
  • Youth sport

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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