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Basketball: Identification of anthropometric and physiological characteristics relative to participation in college basketball

McKenzie Gillam G.
Strength & Conditioning Journal: June 1985
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Thirteen college basketball players, tested within two weeks after their last competitive game, were compared with 14 physical education majors not involved in varsity sports for purposes of identifying those physical and anthropometric qualities necessary for participating in college basketball. Three anthropometric characteristics were found as significantly contributing to participation. Basketball plyers were 10.53 cm taller and heavier in terms of lean body weight (9.39 kg.) than the nonparticipants. No differences were found between total body weight, percent body fat, and fat weight of the two groups. The basketball players were found to have a lower endomorphy (3.33) value. No other body type differences were identified from Health-Carter somatotype evaluations. Physical qualities contributing to basketball ability were also identified. The collegiate athletes were found to be superior to the nonathletes in terms of both acceleration and maximum speed and agility. The power of basketball players (154.12 kg-m/sec.) exceeded that of nonplayers (135.20 kg-m/sec.). General muscular endurance of the players was 35% greater than the nonplayers. Isotonic measures of upper and lower extremity muscular strength did not differ significantly between the two groups. No significant difference in predicted maximum oxygen consumption was found between the basketball players (46.4 ml/kg.min.) and the nonparticipants (42.7 ml/kg.min.). Flexibility of the lower back and posterior thigh was also not found to be a factor contributing to basketball participation. Application of these findings could prove most useful in the recruitment of basketball personnel and in the establishment of training programs to optimize playing ability.

© 1985 National Strength and Conditioning Association