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2015 | 49 | 1 | 65-74

Article title

Interaction Between Leg Muscle Performance and Sprint Acceleration Kinematics


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This study investigated relationships between 10 m sprint acceleration, step kinematics (step length and frequency, contact and flight time), and leg muscle performance (power, stiffness, strength). Twenty-eight field sport athletes completed 10 m sprints that were timed and filmed. Velocity and step kinematics were measured for the 0-5, 5-10, and 0-10 m intervals to assess acceleration. Leg power was measured via countermovement jumps (CMJ), a fivebound test (5BT), and the reactive strength index (RSI) defined by 40 cm drop jumps. Leg stiffness was measured by bilateral and unilateral hopping. A three-repetition maximum squat determined strength. Pearson’s correlations and stepwise regression (p ≤ 0.05) determined velocity, step kinematics, and leg muscle performance relationships. CMJ height correlated with and predicted velocity in all intervals (r = 0.40-0.54). The 5BT (5-10 and 0-10 m intervals) and RSI (5-10 m interval) also related to velocity (r = 0.37-0.47). Leg stiffness did not correlate with acceleration kinematics. Greater leg strength related to and predicted lower 0-5 m flight times (r = -0.46 to -0.51), and a longer 0-10 m step length (r = 0.38). Although results supported research emphasizing the value of leg power and strength for acceleration, the correlations and predictive relationships (r2 = 0.14-0.29) tended to be low, which highlights the complex interaction between sprint technique and leg muscle performance. Nonetheless, given the established relationships between speed, leg power and strength, strength and conditioning coaches should ensure these qualities are expressed during acceleration in field sport athletes.









Physical description


1 - 12 - 2015
1 - 12 - 2015
30 - 12 - 2015


  • California State University, Northridge, Department of Kinesiology, 18111 Nordhoff Street, Northridge, CA 91330, USA
  • Department of Kinesiology, California State University, Northridge, Northridge, USA
  • School of Exercise and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Australia
  • Faculty of Health, University of Technology, Sydney, Lindfield, Australia
  • Sports Studies, Exercise and Sports Science, and Clinical Exercise Physiology Department, School of Science and Technology, University of New England, Armidale, Australia


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