Biomechanical Performance Factors for Development of Minimum Disability Requirements in Para-taekwondo – Part 1
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Objective: To assess taekwondo sparring performance variables, such as joint ranges of motion, reaction times, and kicking foot speeds, to serve as a framework for developing sport-specific classification in Para-taekwondo competition. Methods: After a standard taekwondo warm up, athletes executed five popular scoring techniques, back kick, cut kick, fast kick, turning kick, and tornado kick five times each (25 total). Kinematic and kinetic variables were recorded by a motion capture system of seven infrared cameras and two force plates. Maximum joint range of motion, foot velocities, and reaction time were calculated. Results: Collapsed over kick, maximum hip abduction motion, maximum hip flexion, maximum knee flexion, peak foot velocity, reaction time for male athletes were 47.8 ±10.4°, 46.3 ±7.6°, 105.3 ±14.0°, 11.5 ±2.4 m/s, and 0.46 ±0.06 s respectively. maximum hip abduction motion, maximum hip flexion, maximum knee flexion, peak foot velocity, reaction time for female athletes were 49.1 ±6.8°, 43.9 ±11.0°, 94.2 ±13.7°, 10.9 ±2.2 m/s, and 0.48 ±0.11 s respectively. Conclusions: The results of this study provide a foundational framework for future studies designed to compare and assess Para-taekwondo athletes with various physical and neurological impairments. From this, future studies may move towards developing practical on-site sport specific testing methods which may ultimately assist in making taekwondo-specific classification for Para-taekwondo competitions.
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