KINEMATIC COMPARISON OF GRAB AND TRACK STARTS IN SWIMMING

  • M. Holthe
  • S. McLean
Keywords: swimming, grab start, track start

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to compare takeoff and entry characteristics of track starts performed with normal and restricted spacing of the feet to grab starts. Track starts produced a faster (p = 0.06) and steeper (p = 0.07) entry further from the block (p = 0.18) than grab starts despite similar takeoff speeds and angles. Differences contributing to the improved entry characteristics included increased takeoff height (p = 0.01) and lowered entry height (p = 0.2). Little difference was found in takeoff and entry trunk orientation. These data suggest that track starts offer performance advantages over the grab start. Furthermore, these advantages were not diminished by restricting the spacing of the feet in the track start suggesting that the track start can be performed on shorter starting blocks without diminishing performance.