Scientific Progress or Regress in Sports Physiology?

In modern societies there is strong belief in scientific progress. But unfortunately a parallel partial regress occurs because of often evitable mistakes. Mistakes are mainly forgetting, erroneous theories, errors in experiments and manuscripts, prejudice, selected publication of “positive” results and fraud. An example for forgetting is that methods introduced decades ago are used without knowing the underlying theories: basic articles are no longer read nor cited. This omission may cause incorrect interpretation of results. For instance false use of actual base excess instead of standard base excess for calculation of the number of hydrogen ions leaving the muscles raised the idea that an unknown fixed acid is produced additionally to lactic acid during exercise. An erroneous theory led to the conclusion that lactate is not the anion of a strong acid but a buffer. Mistakes occur after incorrect application of a method, exclusion of unwelcome values, during evaluation of measurements by false calculations, or during preparation of manuscripts. Coauthors as well as reviewers do not always carefully read papers before publication. Peer reviewers might be biased against a hypothesis or an author. A general problem is selected publication of positive result. An example of fraud in sports medicine is the presence of doped subjects in groups of investigated athletes. To reduce regress it is important that investigators search both original and recent articles on a topic, and examine conscientiously the data. All coauthors and reviewers should read the text thoroughly and inspect all tables and figures in a manuscript.

Autor / Fonte:Dieter Böning International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance 2016 October 13, : 1-16