PERFORMANCE DIAGNOSTICS WITH INSTRUMENTED RACING WHEELCHAIRS: COMPARISON OF ATHLETES OF CLASS T52 AND T53

  • F. K. Fuss
  • Z-E. J. Ow
Keywords: wheelchair, instrumentation, mechanics, racing, disability, classification.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to develop a cheap and flexible instrumentation system for on-track monitoring of velocity and associated parameters. Two wheelchairs of two top athletes (class T52 and 53) were equipped with a ferrite motor connected to the rear wheels and the back EMF (electromotive force) was converted to velocity after filtering and calibrating. Drag and rolling resistance were determined from the decreasing velocity when rolling freely and from a differential equation. In two 100 m races per athlete, the velocity, peak push acceleration, push frequency, inertial, drag and friction forces, peak push power and energy were calculated. Athlete 1 (T53) reached twice the maximum velocity and six times the average peak push power of Athlete 2, and produced 2.7 times as much energy over 100m. The system developed is useful for optimising race training.