Effect of four different step detection thresholds on nonmotorized treadmill sprint measurement
Lippincott, Williams and Wilkins
Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science
School of Exercise and Health Sciences
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of 4 different step detection thresholds (10, 15, 20, and 30% body mass [BM]) on the kinetics and kinematics of a youth population sprinting on a Woodway nonmotorized treadmill (NMT). A total of 16 male youth athletes sprinted 30 m from a split start position. Of the 15 variables measured, significant differences (p ≤ 0.05) were found in the measurement of 5 kinematic (step length, vertical displacement, contact time, eccentric, and concentric time) and 2 kinetic (vertical and leg stiffness) variables between the 10 vs. 20 and 30% BM step detection thresholds. Contact time was also significantly different (12%) between 15 vs. 30% BM step detection thresholds. In terms of reliability, the 15 and 30% BM step detection thresholds were found the most stable across all variables (average coefficient of variation ∼6.0%). Given this information, a step detection threshold of 15% BM is recommended for quantifying kinematic and kinetic variables on a NMT, as this threshold seems to account for signal variability appropriately without compromising reliability.