STROKE LENGTH FACTORS DIFFER BETWEEN MALES AND FEMALES
Cappaert, J. M., & Gordon, B. J. (1998). Technique variables of elite level freestyle swimmers. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 30(5), Supplement abstract 156.
Specific freestyle technique parameters associated with stroke length were assessed in US Junior and Senior National Team members (M = 24; F = 24). Ss were videotaped from the front at 40-45 m of a 50-m sprint. Variables measured were average shoulder roll angle, vertical mid-hips to mid-shoulder displacement, the percentage of the stroke cycle that the entry arm was stretched in front of the body, frontal surface area, and stroke length.
In male swimmers both shoulder roll (r = .564) and percentage of time in front of the body (r = .580) were significantly related to stroke length. The size of these relationships is small and indicates many other variables are associated with stroke length. In females no significant factors were revealed.
Implication. In male swimmers a good reach forward and purposeful set-up of the stroke coupled with a substantial body roll are two variables that contribute to stroke length. In females, such variables are less important.
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