Kinematics of rowing: optimum joint angular displacement in the catch position
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
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The purpose of the study was to determine whether a relationship exists between the angular displacement of the knee and hip when in the catch position of the rowing stroke and the resultant power output. In addition, whether this could be modelled in such a way that optimum angles could be calculated, in order to develop a kinematic template of the catch postion that would maximise power output in rowing. Eight female university rowers completed three ten-stroke power tests on Concept II rowing ergo-meters. The power output from each stroke was recorded and the performances were video recorded. Using digitisation and the two dimensional direct linear transformation methods the joint angular displacements of the knee and hip when the performers were in the catch position, of the stroke with the highest power output of each trial, were obtained. These joint angular displacements were then plotted against the corresponding power output per kilogram of body mass and a line of least squares regression was calculated. Additionally, the relationship between limb lengths, angular displacement utilised, and power output was investigated. The results, of the group data, indicated that an angle of 59.8°, at the knee in the catch position, would result in the greatest power output, however, this result is not reliable due to the low R2 value of the equation from which it was derived. The results indicated that a kinematic template could not be devised for the general population but that for each individual a degree three polynomial could be calculated from which optimum angular displacements for the catch position could be obtained. A relationship was also found between the angular displacement of the knee in the catch position and limb length, indicating that the greater the length of the limbs the greater was the degree of knee flexion used in the catch position.
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