Relations between force-velocity characteristics of the multijoint movement of the lower limbs and vertical jump performance were investigated. A total of 67 untrained subjects (age: 19.54 +/- 2.38 years; height: 166.88 +/- 8.53 cm; body mass: 59.14 +/- 10.82 kg, mean +/- SD) performed isometric and isotonic knee-hip extension movements on a servo-controlled dynamometer, and the force-velocity relations were determined. Also, vertical jump (VJ) performance was measured with a jump gauge. The force-velocity relation was described with a linear function so that the maximum isometric force (Fmax) and the maximum unloaded velocity (Vmax) for the knee-hip extension movement were estimated by extrapolation. Maximum isometric force coincided with maximum isometric force, F0 (F0/Fmax = 1.03 +/- 0.24). Maximum isometric force, Vmax, and maximum power output (Pmax) were positively correlated with VJ (r = 0.48, 0.68, and 0.76, respectively; p > 0.001). However, when Fmax, Vmax, and Pmax were normalized with body mass (BM), leg length (LL), and BM, respectively, no correlation was seen between Fmax/BM and VJ (r = 0.24, p > 0.05), and significant correlations were seen between Vmax/LL and VJ (r = 0.56, p > 0.001) and between Pmax/BM and VJ (r = 0.65, p > 0.001). On the other hand, Fmax and Vmax (r = 0.12, p > 0.05) and Fmax/BM and Vmax/LL (r = 0.05, p > 0.05) were not significantly correlated, indicating that Fmax and Vmax were independent variables. The present estimates of Fmax, Vmax, and Pmax can be useful for evaluating the actual performance of multijoint movement of the lower limbs. It is suggested that, although in untrained individuals the speed of movement might be a more important determinant of jump performance, jump performance ability has a potential to improve with increases in strength of the lower limb.
(C) 2007 National Strength and Conditioning Association