MECHANICAL MODEL FOR DETERMINING BASE RUNNING SPEED OF SOFTBALL PLAYERS

  • S. Miller
  • C. Tant
  • L. Beasley
  • M. Jocson

Abstract

INTRODUCT10N -Speed on the bases is critical for fast pitch softball players. A mechanical model of critical features contributing to this speed is important for both the coach and athlete for success. The purpose of this study was to develop a model and determine which variables the coach could manipulate to enhance the success of the players. METHODS• Hat (1993) proposed a deterministic model for sprinting. Average speed was determined by stride length (SL) and stride frequency (SF). SL was further divided into takeoff distance, flight distance, and landing distance with mechanical variables which contribute to these distances supporting SL. SF was also further divided into stride time and additional mechanical variables. Our model incorporated these variables and included variables related to the physical characteristics of the subjects which could be manipulated by the athlete coach. Thirty-nine female NAIA and Division 11 softball players served as subjects. RESULTS -A database was created to determine the demographics of the population selected and of the preliminary data for the proposed model. The data in the table 00low represents the demographics of the population. The data were used 10 support our model and develop a practical approach to enhancing speed of a softball player. Hay, J.G. (1993). The Biomechanics of Sport Techniques. New Jersey: PrenliceHall, pp. 396-422 (Track and fjeld: Running).