Ethical policy and procedures

Publication ethics
TRENDS in Sport Sciences follow Best Practice Guidelines established by Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) (

The Editor-in-Chief and the reviewers evaluate manuscripts for their intellectual content without regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political philosophy of the authors.

Research ethics (human subjects)
When reporting on research that involves human subjects, human material, human tissues, or human data, authors must declare that the investigations were carried out following the rules of the Declaration of Helsinki ( The approval from an ethics committee should be obtained before undertaking the research, and an adequate statement should be placed in the Methods Section of the article (including the project identification code, date of approval, and name of the ethics committee).In addition, a scan of such consent should be attached during the submission process.

Example of an ethical statement: "All subjects gave their informed consent for inclusion before they participated in the study. The study was conducted in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki, and the protocol was approved by the Ethics Committee of ........ (identification code)."

Research ethics (animals)
Authors should ensure that their research follows the commonly-accepted '3Rs':
- Replacement of animals by alternatives wherever possible,
- Reduction in number of animals used, and
- Refinement of experimental conditions and procedures to minimize the harm to animals.

Authors are encouraged to follow the ARRIVE (Animal Research: Reporting of In Vivo Experiments) guidelines ( Studies on animals must be approved by an appropriate committee and the approval should be indicated in Methods Section of the article.

Editors reserve the right to reject any submission that does not meet these requirements.

The Editor-in-Chief, the members of the Editorial Board, and any editorial staff must not disclose any information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the authors of the manuscript, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher, as appropriate.
Unpublished materials disclosed in a submitted manuscript will not be used in the own research of the Editor-in-Chief or the members of the Editorial Board without the express written consent of the author.

Authorship credit is to be based on:
  1. substantial contributions to the conception and design, data acquisition, analysis and interpretation;
  2. drafting an article or revising it critically for important intellectual content;
  3. final approval of the version to be published.
Authors should meet all three requirements. If research has been carried out by multiple authors, individuals who accept direct responsibility for the manuscript should be identified. When submitting a co-authored manuscript, the corresponding author should clearly indicate the preferred citation order of authors and clearly identify all individual authors as well as the name of any authoring team(s). The authorship order on the byline should be a joint decision of the co-authors. All persons designated as authors should qualify for authorship, and all those who qualify should be listed. Each author should contribute sufficiently to the work and take public responsibility for respective fragments of the study, the content and any conflict of interests. All contributors who do not meet the authorship criteria should be listed in the acknowledgments section.

Conflict of interests
The authors must disclose all conflicts of interest to the Editor and describe them on a separate page enclosed with the manuscript:
  1. financial relationships (employment, consultation, stock ownership, remuneration, paid expertise),
  2. personal relationships,
  3. academic competition and others which could affect, according to the Editor or Readers, the content of the study,
  4. sponsorship of the whole or part of the study – draft, collection, analysis and interpretation of data, report writing and decision on submitting for publication.
The reviewers and editors are also obliged to disclose in a letter to Editor-in-Chief all connections which could be suspected as conflict of interests with the Author. The letter should contain all links with commercial companies dealing with products described in the manuscript.

Additional requirements for authors
Authors are obliged to state their contribution to the article in a short cover letter. Ghost authorship exists when someone has made substantial contributions to writing a manuscript and this role is not mentioned in the manuscript itself. Ghost authorship is not permitted in any form and under any circumstances. All persons involved in the preparation of the manuscript submitted to TSS must be declared as authors or identified in an acknowledgments section. No persons whose contribution to the submitted work was insignificant may be included among the authors.

Civil responsibility
The Editor is responsible for the content of the manuscript; however, full responsibility for the content of the article lies with the Author, and for the advertisements with the sponsoring company or marketing company. The Editorial Board and the Publisher do not take responsibility for any possible unreliability of presented research results.

Unless otherwise specified, when submitting the manuscript to the Editor the Authors transfer copyright (including printing, electronic publishing and on-line publishing) to the Publisher.

Author self-archiving
The authors are permitted and encouraged to post published articles on their personal or institutional website, with a clear indication of that the paper was published in this journal and with a link to the journal's site.

Publication decision
The Editor-in-Chief of the journal is responsible for deciding which of the articles submitted to the journal should be published. The editor may be guided by the editorial policies of the journal and constrained by such legal requirements as shall then be in force regarding libel, copyright infringement, and plagiarism. The editor may confer with the members of the Editorial Board or reviewers in making this decision.

Duties of authors

Reporting standards
Authors of reports of original research should present an accurate account of the work performed as well as an objective discussion of its significance. Underlying data should be represented accurately in the paper. A paper should contain sufficient detail and references to permit others to replicate the work. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable.

Data access and retention
Authors are encouraged to provide the raw data in connection with a paper for both editorial review and public access (consistent with the ALPSP-STM Statement on Data and Databases) if possible, and should in any event be prepared to retain such data for a reasonable time after publication.

Originality and plagiarism
The authors should ensure that they have written entirely original works, and if the authors have used the work and/or words of others that this has been appropriately cited or quoted.

Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication
An author should not in general publish manuscripts describing essentially the same research in more than one journal or conference. Submitting the same manuscript to more than one journal or conference constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable.

Acknowledgement of sources
Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must always be given. Authors should cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work.

Authorship of the paper
Authorship should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to the conception, design, execution, or interpretation of the reported study. All those who have made significant contributions should be listed as co-authors. Where there are others who have participated in certain substantive aspects of the research project, they should be acknowledged or listed as contributors. The corresponding author should ensure that all appropriate co-authors and no inappropriate co-authors are included on the paper, and that all co-authors have seen and approved the final version of the paper and have agreed to its submission for publication.

Disclosure and conflicts of interest
All authors should disclose in their manuscript any financial or other substantive conflict of interest that might be construed to influence the results or interpretation of their manuscript. All sources of financial support for the project should be disclosed.

Authors will be asked to sign a copyright transfer agreement as well as a conflict of interest statement. This enables the publisher to administer copyright on behalf of the authors and the society, while allowing the continued use of the material by the author for scholarly communication.

Fundamental errors in published works
When an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in his or her own published work, it is the author’s obligation to promptly notify the journal editor or publisher and cooperate with the editor to retract or correct the paper.

Peer review process

The authors who submit manuscripts for publication agree to undergo a reviewing process. All submitted manuscripts are first subjected to editorial review, and, subsequently, peer review by experts.

The submitted manuscripts will not be sent to reviewers representing the authors’ institutions, or to persons who can be in conflict of interest with the authors. All reviews are confidential and anonymous. The reviewers may not use the content of the manuscript before its publication.

The manuscript is given an editorial number for identification at all stages of the editorial process. The author is notified about the reviews and corresponds with the Editor of the journal concerning remarks or qualification of the study for printing.

All submitted papers are subject to strict double-blind peer-review process by at least two international reviewers that are experts in the area of the particular paper. The factors that are taken into account in a review are as follows:
  1. Compatibility with the scope of the TRENDS in Sport Sciences
  2. Elements of novelty and originality
  3. Scientific and/or practical value of the article
  4. Ethic requirements
  5. Abstract depicting of the entire article
  6. Material and design of the experiments
  7. Methodology and statistics
  8. Credibility and importance of results
  9. Presentation of data (necessary tables and figures)
  10. Discussion and interpretation of results
  11. Conclusions logically justified by the evidence adduced
  12. Selection of up-to-date references
Of these, the main factors taken into account are significance and originality.

The possible decisions include:
  1. Accept
  2. Accept after minor corrections
  3. Re-evaluate after major revision
  4. Reject
Articles that are often rejected include those that are poorly written or organized or are written in poor English. If authors are encouraged to revise and resubmit a submission, there is no guarantee that the revised submission will be accepted. Rejected articles will not be re-reviewed. Articles may be rejected without review if the Editor-in-Chief considers the article obviously not suitable for publication.

The ultimate decision regarding the publication of the manuscript, irrespective of the review's outcomes, resides with the editor-in-chief, deputy editor-in-chief, or another duly authorized person. The decision is irrevocable and appeal is not admissible.

Duties of reviewers

Contribution to editorial decisions
Peer review assists the Editor-in-Chief, Deputy Editor, and the Editorial Board in making editorial decisions, and through the editorial communications with the author, it may also assist the author in improving the paper.

A selected referee who feels unqualified to review the research reported in a manuscript or knows that its prompt review will be impossible should notify the editor and decline to review the paper.

The manuscripts received for review will be treated as confidential documents. They will not be shown to or discussed with others except as authorized by the editor.

Standards of objectivity
Reviews should be conducted objectively. Personal criticism of the author is unacceptable. Referees should express their views clearly with supporting arguments.

Acknowledgement of sources
Reviewers should attempt to identify relevant published work that has not been cited by the authors. Any statement that a result or argument has been previously reported should be accompanied by the relevant citation. A reviewer should also call to the editor's attention any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other published paper of which they have personal knowledge.

Disclosure and conflict of interest
Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage. Reviewers should not consider manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies, or institutions connected to the papers.
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