Stress and muscle damage monitoring in high-level basketball players


  • Audrius Gocentas Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences, Lithuania
  • Anatoli Landõr Faculty of Medicine, University of Tartu, Estonia



stress, cortisol, monitoring, basketball


Close complex monitoring during the entire training period is essential for professional athletes to assess the effect of the training programme and to determine the quality of recovery. Follow-up of biochemical and hormonal variables throughout the season can help realize the above-mentioned goals.
Objectives: To determine baseline blood creatine kinase (CK) and cortisol (C) levels in professional basketball players before the beginning of regular training and to follow up the subsequent levels of blood C and CK over an entire season with analysis of dynamic changes in relation to individual coefficients of variation.
Methods: Six professional basketball players were monitored from the first pre-season day to the end of a regular season. Blood samples were collected at six time points: before the pre-season, after the pre-season and four times during the in-season to determine blood C and CK concentrations.
Results: Individual trends of the investigated variables were established and analysed with respect to the calculated intra- and inter-individual coefficients of variation for C and CK. Dynamic changes in C and CK levels coincided with changes in the content of the training process.
Conclusion: In summary, the findings in the present study suggest that long-term intensive exercise in basketball has a significant influence on the blood cortisol profile. Muscle damage was associated with bodily collisions between the players but not with stress response in the current study.


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