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ERIC Number: EJ1091497
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
ISSN: ISSN-0270-1367
Relative Age Effects in Women's Rugby Union from Developmental Leagues to World Cup Tournaments
Lemez, Srdjan; MacMahon, Clare; Weir, Patricia
Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, v87 n1 p59-67 2016
Annual age cohort groupings promote relative age effects (RAEs), which often, inadvertently, create participation and attainment biases between relatively older and younger players within the same age cohort. In a globally evolving sport, women's rugby team selection practices may potentially bypass qualified players as a result of maturational differences. Purpose: Our study examined the prevalence of RAEs in women's rugby union. Method: Player data (age range = 4-21+ years) were gathered from the 2006 and 2010 Rugby World Cups (n = 498) and from Canadian (n = 1,497) and New Zealand (NZ; n = 13,899) developmental rugby leagues. Results: Although no evidence of an RAE was found in the World Cup samples, chi-square analyses identified some typical and atypical patterns of RAEs at the developmental levels (w = 0.3). Younger developmental groups displayed a typical RAE patterning with a greater representation of older players (Canadian 13-year-olds, w = 0.58; NZ 4-year-olds, w = 0.35), whereas older developmental groups displayed an atypical RAE patterning with a greater representation of younger players (Canadian 19-year-olds, w = 0.58; NZ 17-year-olds, w = 0.32). Further, a traditional RAE emerged in the Canadian 11- to 15-year-old age group, ?[superscript 2](3) = 10.92, p < 0.05, w = 0.30. Conclusion: The lack of homogeneity of traditional RAEs across the sample questions the existence of a single, clear RAE in women's rugby. Some evidence of participation inequalities at the developmental levels suggests that further RAE research in more varied sociocultural contexts may be necessary.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada; New Zealand