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Front. Physiol. | doi: 10.3389/fphys.2019.00613

Age-related changes of sprint kinematics

  • 1Faculty of Medicine, RWTH Aachen University, Germany
  • 2Manchester Metropolitan University, United Kingdom
  • 3Lithuanian Sports University, Lithuania
  • 4University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Târgu Mureş, Romania

The sprint performance of master athletes decreases with age, but little is known about possible contributions of changes in sprint kinematics. The aim of this study was to assess the influence of age, sex and sprinting kinematics on sprint performance. To investigate this, 199 men (30-89 y) and 81 women (33-76 y), bending over, brake, propulsion, leg stiffness and hip flexion angles were assessed during a sprint stride using high-resolution video analyses. Propulsion angle (men 25 ± 4.2, women 23.7 ± 4) was larger and hip flexion angle (men 25.3 ± 7.3, women 28 ± 5.7) smaller in men than women (both p < .001). Bending over angle (p = .004), brake angle (p = .004) and hip flexion angle (p < .001) increased, propulsion angle (p < .001) and leg stiffness angle (p = .001) decreased with age, irrespective of sex. While performance was mainly determined by age (R2 = .501, p < .001) and sex (adjusted R2 = .642), hip flexion angle (adjusted R2 = .686) and bending over angle (adjusted R2 = .705) contributed also to performance in 60-m sprints. In 200-m sprints in addition to age and sex only hip flexion angle (age R2 = .506; age + sex adjusted R2 = 641; age + sex + hip flexion adjusted R2 = .655) contributed to performance. In conclusion, the kinematics of sprinting differ between sexes and change with age. The ageing-related changes of sprinting have a minor contribution to the ageing-related decline in performance

Keywords: Ageing, age, Master athlete, Video Analysis, Locomotion, Track and Field, Running, Sex

Received: 04 Jan 2019; Accepted: 01 May 2019.

Edited by:

Volker Scheer, Fondation de la science des sports ultra, France

Reviewed by:

Pantelis T. Nikolaidis, School of Health and Welfare Sciences, University of West Attica, Greece
Mitsuo Otsuka, Ritsumeikan University, Japan  

Copyright: © 2019 Dahl, Degens, Hildebrand and Ganse. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Mr. Julian Dahl, Faculty of Medicine, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, 52074, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, julian.dahl@rwth-aachen.de