An Analysis of the Rollover Backstroke Turn by Age-Group Swimmers

Brian Blanksby, S. Skender, Bruce Elliott, K. Mcelroy, Grant Landers

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30 Citations (Scopus)


Kinetic (3‐D force plate), kinematic (videography) and temporal characteristics of backstroke turns by 20 male and 16 female swimmers were recorded to identify and describe key elements of backstroke turning performance. Data were recorded during a 50m maximum effort swim in a 25 metre pool. A Pearson product moment correlation matrix revealed that the 5 m RTT was significantly correlated with anthropometric measures of height, mass, trochanteric height and age; kinetic measures of horizontal impulse and peak force; and kinematic measures of wall contact time and peak velocity. The stepwise multiple regression equation to predict 5 m RTT was: 19.6‐0.75 trochanteric height‐1.8 wall exit velocity‐0.03 peak vertical force. Four key factors were identified from a principle components factor analysis ‐ anthropometry and force, post‐turn velocity, force preparation and rotational skills. Implications from the findings were that age‐group backstrokers should ‘hit the wall hard’ with relatively extended legs to reduce swim distance and push‐off deceleration; use minimal wall contact time, and maximise forces to develop high horizontal velocities in a streamlined position.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-14
JournalSports Biomechanics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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