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Florence, AL, United States

The University of North Alabama is a coeducational university located in Florence, Alabama, and the state's oldest four-year public university.Occupying a 130-acre campus in a residential section of Florence, UNA is located within a four-city area that also includes Tuscumbia, Sheffield and Muscle Shoals. The four cities comprise a metropolitan area with a combined population of 140,000 people.The University of North Alabama, which celebrated its 175th anniversary in 2005, has undergone numerous sweeping changes in the course of its long history. Originally founded as LaGrange College in 1830, it was reestablished in 1872 as the first state-supported teachers college south of the Ohio River. A year later, it became one of the nation's first coeducational colleges.Within the last half century, the University of North Alabama has developed into a comprehensive regional university exerting a major influence over the cultural, social and economic life of Northwest Alabama and providing educational opportunities for students pursuing undergraduate and graduate majors offered through the colleges of Arts and science, Business, Education and Nursing and Health.UNA has strong commitment to improving academic quality, an effort perhaps reflected in the 2008 edition of U.S. News and World Report's America's Best Colleges, which ranked the university as a top tier public university.UNA also underwent continued growth in 2009, with 7,243 undergraduate and graduate students enrolled for the fall semester. Wikipedia.

Kraft J.A.,Missouri Western State University | Green J.M.,University of North Alabama | Thompson K.R.,Missouri Western State University
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research

Kraft, JA, Green, JM, and Thompson, KR. Session ratings of perceived exertion responses during resistance training bouts equated for total work but differing in work rate. J Strength Cond Res 28(2): 540-545, 2014-Session ratings of perceived exertion (SRPE) during resistance training may be influenced by specific exercise parameters. The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of work rate (total work per unit time) and recording time on SRPE. Participants performed 3 exercise bouts of bench press, lat pulldown, overhead press, upright row, triceps extension, and biceps curl at 60% of predetermined 1 repetition maximum according to these protocols: (a) 3 sets × 8 repetitions (reps) × 1.5 minutes of recovery, (b) 3 sets × 8 reps × 3 minutes of recovery, and (c) 2 sets × 12 reps × 3 minutes of recovery. Session ratings of perceived exertion for the × 3 8 × 1.5-minute recovery (5.3 ± 1.8) and 2 × 12 × 3-minute recovery trials (6.2 ± 1.7) were significantly greater vs. × 3 8 × 3-minute recovery trial (4.2 ± 1.8). The difference approached significance between work rate-matched protocols (p = 0.08). No difference was observed between SRPE at 15 minutes (5.1 ± 1.8) vs. 30 minutes (5.2 ± 1.9) post exercise. Post-set in-task ratings of perceived exertion were higher for the 2 × 12 × 3-minute recovery trial (5.9 ± 1.4) vs. × 3 8 × 1.5-minute recovery trial (4.8 ± 1.2) and × 3 8 × 3-minute recovery trial (4.0 ± 1.6). The difference approached significance (p = 0.07) for the × 3 8 × 3-minute recovery trial vs. × 3 8 × 1.5-minute recovery trial. Session ratings of perceived exertion responded to changes in work rate with no significant difference at matched work rates, indicating that SRPE is responsive to training load. Results indicated that more proximal monitoring (15 minutes post exercise) yielded reliable estimates of SRPE increasing the practical utility of the measure. © 2014 National Strength and Conditioning Association. Source

Fleming J.P.,University of North Alabama | Dibble E.D.,Mississippi State University

Aquatic plants (macrophytes) are important components of freshwater ecosystems and serve numerous purposes that structure aquatic communities. Although macrophytes represent an essential component of stable aquatic communities, invasive macrophytes negatively alter ecosystem properties. Non-native, invasive species have been identified as a major cause of biodiversity loss and the increasing prevalence of invasive species has prompted studies to help understand their impacts and to conserve biodiversity. Studying mechanisms of invasion also give insight into how communities are structured and assembled. This paper examined mechanisms that contribute to macrophyte invasion through a literature review. Mechanisms identified with this review included competition, enemy release, evolution of increased competitive ability, mutualisms, invasional meltdown, novel weapons, allelopathy, phenotypic plasticity, naturalization of related species, empty niche, fluctuating resources, opportunity windows, and propagule pressure; and were then placed within the context of the invasion process. Results of this review indicated that many invasion mechanisms have been tested with fully aquatic macrophytes with varied levels of support (i.e., some mechanisms are not supported by evidence in the context of macrophyte invasions). Future research should continue the search for evidence of invasion mechanisms that allow introduced species to establish. It is likely that general principles governing these invasions do not exist, at least among comparisons across ecosystem types. However, ecologists should continue to search for general patterns within definable ecosystem units to increase understanding about factors contributing to invasibility. © 2014, Springer International Publishing Switzerland. Source

I examined the effect of body size on the locomotor cost of caudal autotomy in the plethodontid salamander Desmognathus quadramaculatus. In this primarily aquatic species, larger individuals autotomize the tail less readily than smaller individuals, and this may be related to a greater locomotor cost of tail loss for larger individuals. To determine whether the rate of regeneration for tail length and the recovery of maximal locomotor performance after caudal autotomy vary with body size, I measured the rate of tail re-growth and the swimming burst speed for 14 individuals (snout-vent length = 42-106 mm) as they regenerated their tails. Burst speeds of individuals were significantly reduced after caudal autotomy. With the loss of about 62% of tail length, mean burst speed declined about 50%. Thus, caudal autotomy was costly in terms of a reduction in maximal locomotor performance in an aquatic environment. After the regeneration of 50% of the tail length that was lost, post-autotomy swimming speeds were not significantly different from pre-autotomy swimming speeds. The time required for this amount of tail length regeneration (about 63-143 d) increased significantly with body size. The rate of re-growth for the lost tail length declined significantly after the regeneration of 50% of tail length. These results demonstrate that the locomotor cost of tail loss is greater for larger individuals of D. quadramaculatus, and this may be related to a lower propensity for caudal autotomy and a greater propensity for alternative antipredator mechanisms (e.g., biting) for such individuals. © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2011. Source

Peveler W.W.,Northern Kentucky University | Green J.M.,University of North Alabama
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research

In cycling, saddle height adjustment is critical for optimal performance and injury prevention. A 25-35° knee angle is recommended for injury prevention, whereas 109% of inseam, measured from floor to ischium, is recommended for optimal performance. Previous research has demonstrated that these 2 methods produce significantly different saddle heights and may influence cycling performance. This study compared performance between these 2 methods for determining saddle height. Subjects consisted of 11 well-trained (V̇O2 max = 61.55 ± 4.72 ml·kg -1·min-1) male cyclists. Subjects completed a total of 8 performance trials consisting of a graded maximal protocol, three 15-minute economy trials, and 4 anaerobic power trials. Dependent measures for economy (V̇O2, heart rate, and rating of perceived exertion) and anaerobic power (peak power and mean power) were compared using repeated measures analysis of variance (α = 0.05). V̇O2 was significantly lower (reflecting greater economy) at a 25° knee angle (44.77 ± 6.40 ml·kg-1·min-1) in comparison to a 35° knee angle (45.22 ± 6.79 ml·kg -1·min-1) and 109% of inseam (45.98 ± 5.33 ml·kg-1·min-1). Peak power at a 25° knee angle (1,041.55 ± 168.72 W) was significantly higher in relation to 109% of inseam (1,002.05 ± 147.65 W). Mean power at a 25° knee angle (672.37 ± 90.21 W) was significantly higher in relation to a 35° knee angle (654.71 ± 80.67 W). Mean power was significantly higher at 109% of inseam (662.86 ± 79.72 W) in relation to a 35° knee angle (654.71 ± 80.67 W). Use of 1 09% of inseam fell outside the recommended 25-35° range 73% of the time. Use of 25° knee angle appears to provide optimal performance while keeping knee angle within the recommended range for injury prevention. © 2011 National Strength and Conditioning Association. Source

Although tail autotomy often has an immediate survival benefit, tail loss may subsequently hinder locomotion and the ability to escape from predators. Maximal locomotor performance can be reduced after tail autotomy in the plethodontid salamander Desmognathus quadramaculatus. The loss of a large proportion of the tail length (>60%) is costly for this semiaquatic species in terms of a reduction in maximal swimming performance (i.e., burst speed is about 50% less after such autotomy). However, the minimal amount of tail loss that causes a significant reduction in swimming performance (i.e., the "critical tail autotomy" for locomotion) is unknown. I examined the effect of partial tail loss (either 15% or 30% of tail length) on burst swimming performance. After the loss of about 15% of tail length in one experimental group (N = 15), burst speeds for individuals were not significantly different from preautotomy burst speeds. After the loss of about 30% of tail length in a second experimental group (N = 15), burst speeds for individuals were significantly less than preautotomy burst speeds. These results indicate that the critical tail autotomy for reduction of maximal swimming performance is between 15% and 30% of tail length. About 50% of individuals in the field (N = 69) experienced tail autotomy and most (80%) of these individuals lost more than 30% of their tails. This study shows that tail autotomy often results in a reduction in maximal swimming performance and thus a locomotor cost for individuals of this species. Copyright 2013 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles. Source

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