A BIOMECHANICAL ANALYSIS OF THE TAKE-OFF PHASE IN BELOW-KNEE AMPUTEE HIGH JUMP

  • Lee Nolan
  • Benjamin L. Patritti
  • Kathy J. Simpson
Keywords: high jump, amputee, biomechanics, technique, below-knee

Abstract

An analysis of below-knee amputee take-off technique was performed on two athletes competing in the high jump finals of the 2004 Paralympic Games. Two digital video cameras were used to film the event with the data later digitised and reconstructed using standard 3-0 OLT procedures. Some similarities with non-amputee high jump technique were noted in that centre of mass height was low at touch-down (TO), there was a similar reported magnitude of negative vertical velocity at TO, and most of the vertical velocity generated occurred in the first half of the take-off phase. However, both below-knee amputee athletes exhibited a slower horizontal approach velocity, a lower positive vertical take-off velocity, a more upright leg position at touch-down and a greater range of motion of the hip throughout the take-off phase compared to what is known about non-amputee high jump technique. These differences may be associated with taking off from the prosthetic limb on the last stride of approach. Understanding why these differences occur has implications for coaching and improving technique.
Published
2008-03-02
Section
Coaching and Sports Activities