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Tethered Swimming Test

Reliability and the Association to Swimming Performance and Land-based Anaerobic Performance

Nagle Zera, Jacquelyn1; Nagle, Elizabeth F.2; Nagai, Takashi3; Lovalekar, Mita4; Abt, John P.5; Lephart, Scott M.6

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: February 14, 2018 - Volume Publish Ahead of Print - Issue - p
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000002501
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The purpose of this study was three-fold: (a) to examine the test-retest reliability of a 30 second maximal tethered freestyle swimming test (TST), (b) to assess the validity of the TST by examining the association to sprint swimming performance and, (c) to examine the associations between a swim-specific and land-based measure of anaerobic performance. A total of twenty-nine male and female swimmers were recruited to participate in the study. Each participant completed a Wingate Anaerobic cycling test (WAnT), two or four TST, and a 22.9 meter (25 yard), 45.7 meter (50 yard), and 91.4 meter (100 yard) maximal freestyle performance swims (PS). Mean and peak force (Fmean, Fpeak) were recorded for both the WAnT and TST, and average swimming velocity and time were recorded for the PS. Additionally, physiological and perceptual measures were recorded immediate post exercise for all tests. The results of the present investigation showed strong intersession and intrasession reliability (R= 0.821-0.975; p<0.001) for force parameters of the TST. Moderate correlations were found between Fmean and PS time and velocity of all distances, with slightly weaker correlations between Fpeak and the 22.9 meter (time and velocity) and 45.7 meter (velocity) PS. Finally, moderate correlations were found for Fmean and Fpeak of the TST and WAnT. This study demonstrated that the TST is a reliable measure, with moderate association to swimming performance, producing similar physiological responses compared to free swimming. Therefore, future research shoulSd focus on investigating the potential benefits of utilizing the TST as a regular assessment tool as a part of a competitive swimming training program to track adaptations and inform training decisions.

1Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Exercise Science and Sports Studies, John Carroll University, University Heights, OH

2Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Health and Physical Activity, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

3Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Sports Medicine, Neuromuscular Research Laboratory, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

4Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Sports Medicine, Neuromuscular Research Laboratory, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

5Ph.D., Associate Professor, College of Health Sciences, Sports Medicine Institute, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY

6Ph.D., Dean, College of Health Sciences, Sports Medicine Institute, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY

Corresponding Author: Jacquelyn Nagle Zera, Ph.D. 1 John Carroll Blvd. University Heights, OH 44118 Office: (216) 397-1566 Email: jzera@jcu.edu

Supported by ONR: N00014-14-1-0022/N00014-15-0069

Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.