A kinematic analysis of high-speed treadmill sprinting over a range of velocities

R. KIVI, DEREK M.; V. MARAJ, BRIAN K.; GERVAIS, PIERRE

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: April 2002 - Volume 34 - Issue 4 - pp 662-666
APPLIED SCIENCES: Biodynamics

KIVI, D. M. R., B. K. V. MARAJ, and P. GERVAIS. A kinematic analysis of high-speed treadmill sprinting over a range of velocities. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc., Vol. 34, No. 4, pp. 662–666, 2002.

Introduction: The purpose of this study was to measure changes in stride characteristics and lower-extremity kinematics of the hip and knee as a function of increasing treadmill velocity, at velocities ranging from submaximal to near maximal.

Methods: Six power/speed athletes experienced at sprinting on a treadmill performed trials at 70%, 80%, 90%, and 95% of their previous individual maximum velocity, with video data collected in the sagittal view at 60 Hz.

Results: Significant differences were seen in stride frequency (70%, 80%, P < 0.01; 90%, P < 0.05), stance time (70%, 80%, P < 0.01; 90%, P < 0.05) flight time (70%, P < 0.01; 80%, P < 0.05), hip flexion angle (70%, P < 0.01), hip flexion angular velocity (70%, P < 0.01), hip extension angular velocity (70%, 80%, P < 0.01), knee flexion angular velocity (70%, 80%, P < 0.01), and knee extension angular velocity (70%, P < 0.01), as compared with the near maximum (95%) velocity. Coefficient of variation (CV) values showed that the positional variables at the hip and knee were more variable at faster test conditions, indicating that kinematic changes occur as a function of increased treadmill velocity.

Conclusions: The results indicated that at slower velocities, there were differences in the stride characteristics and lower-extremity kinematics while sprinting on a treadmill. As the velocity approached near maximum mechanical breakdown was seen, suggesting that velocities greater than 90% should be used selectively during treadmill training.

Sports Biomechanics Laboratory and Perceptual Motor Behavior Laboratory, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, CANADA

Submitted for publication January 2001.

Accepted for publication August 2001.

©2002The American College of Sports Medicine