Journal of Trainology



November 2020; Vol. 9, No. 2: Pages 60-63

Regional body composition and its relationship to performance in powerlifters with physical disabilities: A pilot study

Christopher A. Fahs, Kelley Humphries, Meadow Campbell


Objectives: The purpose of this pilot study was to 1) examine the regional body composition characteristics of competitive powerlifters with physical disabilities and 2) to determine the relationships between relative performance and regional LBM in these powerlifters. Design: Cross-sectional, descriptive study. Methods: Dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scans were obtained on 11 powerlifters with physical disabilities along with competition performance on 9 athletes. Total and regional LBM values were indexed relative to height (kg/m2). Results: A strong, significant, relationship was observed between AH (Haleczko) bench press score and LBM index in the arm region (rho = 0.787; p=0.015) but not in the trunk (rho = 0.583; p=0.108), legs (rho = 0.042; p=0.922), or total body (rho = 0.617; p=0.086). Conclusions: These results suggest LBM accretion in the arms may be most beneficial for powerlifting performance for those with physical disabilities.

Received October 16, 2020; accepted November 27, 2020