Title

A review of research on the mechanical stiffness in running and jumping: methodology and implications

Document Type

Journal Article

Publisher

Wiley-Blackwell Munksgaard

Place of Publication

Denmark

Faculty

Computing, Health and Science

School

Exercise, Biomedical and Health Science

RAS ID

5976

Comments

This article was originally published as

Brughelli, M. (08.2008). "A review of research on the mechanical stiffness in running and jumping: methodology and implications Mechanical stiffness". Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports (0905-7188), 18 (4), p. 417.

Original article available here

Abstract

Mechanical stiffness (vertical, leg and joint stiffness) can be calculated during normal human movements, such as running and hopping. Mechanical stiffness is thought to influence several athletic variables, including rate of force development, elastic energy storage and utilization and sprint kinematics. Consequently, the relationship between mechanical stiffness and athletic performance is of great interest to the sport and research communities. Unfortunately, these relationships are relatively unexplored by researchers. For example, there are no longitudinal studies that have investigated the effects of strength or power training on mechanical stiffness levels (calculated during human running). In addition to reviewing the available literature on the relationships between mechanical stiffness (calculated during human running) and functional performance, this review focuses its discussion on the various equipment and methods used to calculate leg-spring stiffness during human running. Furthermore, future implications are presented for practitioners and researchers based on both the limitations and the gaps in the literature reviewed. It is our hope that a better understanding of mechanical stiffness will aid in improving the methodological quality of research in this area and its subsequent effect on athletic performance.

 

Link to publisher version (DOI)

10.1111/j.1600-0838.2008.00769.x