A biomechanical comparison of accelerative and maximum velocity sprinting: specific strength training considerations

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James Wild with Neil Bezodis, Richard Blagrove and Ian Bezodis

Numerous biomechanical research studies have been conducted in both accelerative and maximum velocity sprinting. Whilst there clearly exists a relative wealth of biomechanical data regarding these phases of sprinting, the differences between them are seldom discussed. Although accelerative and maximum velocity sprinting have not been directly assessed within a single cohort of athletes, general similarities such as the triple extension (proximal-to-distal hip, knee, ankle sequencing) can clearly be identified from the aforementioned research. However, both subtle and gross differences can also be identified between accelerative and maximum velocity sprinting from existing literature. These include differences in the basic temporal and kinematic factors such as step length, step frequency and flight and contact times, the magnitude and direction of the forces generated against the ground during stance, and the kinematic and kinetic patterns exhibited by the ankle, knee and hip joints.

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