PLYOMETRICS DO NOT ENHANCE THROWING PERFORMANCE
Gencoglu, C., Aksu, D., Sahin, E., Gulbahar, S., Atest, O., & Bediz, C. S. (2009). Effects of upper extremity plyometrics on throwing velocity and isokinetic muscle strength of shoulder rotators in female handball players. A paper presented at the 14th Annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science, Oslo, Norway, June 24-27.
This study investigated the effects of upper extremity plyometrics on throwing velocity and isokinetic muscle strength of the shoulder rotators in female team handball players (N = 16). Ss were formed into a plyometric-exercise group (N = 8) and a daily-training control group (N = 8). The plyometric group performed plyometric exercises in addition to daily training while the control group experienced only the daily training. Throwing velocities were tested in two types of throws; standing-throwing velocity and 3-step throwing velocity. Shoulder internal and external rotation peak torques were examined before and after the six-week training period.
Throwing velocities significantly increased in both groups. Peak torque of the internal rotators in the dominant arm and peak torque of external rotators in the non-dominant arm increased in the plyometric group. Peak torque of the internal and external rotators in the dominant arm and peak torque of the internal rotators in the non-dominant arm significantly increased in the control group. When both groups were compared, there were no significant differences in throwing velocities or peak torques.
Implication. Six weeks of plyometric exercises provides no additional improvements in throwing velocities or isokinetic muscle strength of the shoulder rotators in female handball players.
[It should be noted that this finding for female athletes is contradictory to the conclusions of an investigation (Carter et al., 2007) using male baseball players. Because treatment effects in plyometric studies are equivocal, there must be other variables with which the activity interacts. It would be wrong to assert as a general principle that plyometric training increases throwing velocity. Only under some unspecified circumstances does that occur.]
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