Exploring sport online: Athletes and efficient hearts
Exploring sport online: Athletes and efficient hearts

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2 A first look at the human body

2.1 Introduction

The human body is a sophisticated and amasing entity. Think about the mechanical way the limbs operate, the electrical brain functions and chemicals working together in the different body organs. All of these activities integrate in a largely seamless way to help keep us alive in ways of which most of us are barely aware! Many people are content that their own body works, and don't care much about the details. However, if we want to understand how our own body, or those of elite athletes, function during sport then we have to develop a closer understanding of our knowledge about the body.

This course provides an introduction to the fundamental biology of the human body and will give you an opportunity to:

  • gain an overall appreciation of how the body works in a scientific sense, and
  • understand that a scientific view is necessary for us to study how performance in sport is linked to performance of the body.

It will do this by introducing three different ways to think about the body. The first idea is to simply to think of your body as a machine. The second is to think about the different systems that operate in our bodies. The third is to think about the different parts of the body, the individual bits that we are all made up of.

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