INVESTIGATIONS OF THE STEP LENGTH-STEP FREQUENCY RELATIONSHIP IN SPRINTING: APPLIED IMPLICATIONS FOR PERFORMANCE
Keywords: athletics, track and field, velocity, joint kinetics, single-subject design
AbstractThe relationship between velocity, step length (SL) and step frequency (SF) has received much attention in the biomechanical literature, but there is not a consensus on which of SL and SF is most important to performance in elite sprinting. This paper presents a series of linked studies aimed at increasing the understanding of the individualised nature of the relationship. The research has revealed that elite sprinters’ velocity can be individually reliant on either SL or SF, and that the athlete’s training programme also plays an important role in determining SL and SF. Furthermore, it is thought that sprinters can manipulate the SL-SF relationship throughout a maximal sprint to maintain velocity. The influence of joint kinetics on SL and SF is not yet fully understood, but further work in this area will accelerate the understanding of the biomechanics of sprint performance.
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