SPECIFIC STRATEGY FOR THE MEDALLISTS VERSUS FINALISTS AND SEMI-FINALISTS IN THE WOMEN'S 200 M BREASTSTROKE AT THE SYDNEY OLYMPIC GAMES

  • J. Chatard
  • N. Caudal
  • J. Cossor
  • B. Mason
Keywords: swimming, biomechanics, performance, breaststroke, women

Abstract

The performances of the women's 200 m breaststroke at the Sydney Olympic games (final and semi-final) were studied using 12 video cameras. For each of the four 50 m laps, stroke velocities, stroke frequency, stroke length, and turn velocities were calculated using a specific competition analysis computer program. The medallists swam faster than the nonmedallist finalists in the four 50 m laps of the race. However, the difference was not statistically significant. In contrast, the medallists had a longer stroke length than the two other groups. For the 16 swimmers, the 200 m breaststroke velocity was mainly related to the velocity of the third and fourth 50 m laps (r = 0.88 and 0.86; p < 0.01). From the stroke frequency and stroke length perspective, three different technique strategies were observed. However, they were not related to the final result.