The effects of initial conditions and takeoff technique on running jumps for height and distance

Cassie Wilson, Mark A King, Maurice R Yeadon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
199 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This study used a subject-specific model with eight segments driven by joint torques for forward dynamics simulation to investigate the effects of initial conditions and takeoff technique on the performance of running jumps for height and distance. The torque activation profiles were varied in order to obtain matching simulations for two jumping performances (one for height and one for distance) by an elite male high jumper, resulting in a simulated peak height of 1.98 m and a simulated horizontal distance of 4.38 m. The peak height reached/horizontal distance travelled by the mass centre for the same corresponding initial conditions were then maximised by varying the activation timings resulting in a peak height of 2.09 m and a horizontal distance of 4.67 m. In a further two optimizations the initial conditions were interchanged giving a peak height of 1.82 m and a horizontal distance of 4.04 m. The four optimised simulations show that even with similar approach speeds the initial conditions at touchdown have a substantial effect on the resulting performance. Whilst the takeoff phase is clearly important, unless the approach phase and the subsequent touchdown conditions are close to optimal then a jumper will be unable to compensate for touchdown condition shortcomings during the short takeoff phase to achieve a performance close to optimum.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2207-2212
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Volume44
Issue number12
Early online date6 Jul 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Aug 2011

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