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The effect of speed on leg stiffness and joint kinetics in human running

Journal Paper/Review - Dec 1, 1999

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Citation
Arampatzis A, Brüggemann G, Metzler V. The effect of speed on leg stiffness and joint kinetics in human running. Journal of biomechanics 1999; 32:1349-53.
Project
Type
Journal Paper/Review (English)
Journal
Journal of biomechanics 1999; 32
Publication Date
Dec 1, 1999
Issn Print
0021-9290
Issn Electronic
Pages
1349-53
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Brief description/objective

The goals of this study were to examine the following hypotheses: (a) there is a difference between the theoretically calculated (McMahon and Cheng, 1990. Journal of Biomechanics 23, 65-78) and the kinematically measured length changes of the spring-mass model and (b) the leg spring stiffness, the ankle spring stiffness and the knee spring stiffness are influenced by running speed. Thirteen athletes took part in this study. Force was measured using a "Kistler" force plate (1000 Hz). Kinematic data were recorded using two high-speed (120 Hz) video cameras. Each athlete completed trials running at five different velocities (approx. 2.5, 3.5, 4.5, 5.5 and 6.5 m/s). Running velocity influences the leg spring stiffness, the effective vertical spring stiffness and the spring stiffness at the knee joint. The spring stiffness at the ankle joint showed no statistical difference (p < 0.05) for the five velocities. The theoretically calculated length change of the spring-mass model significantly (p < 0.05) overestimated the actual length change. For running velocities up to 6.5 m/s the leg spring stiffness is influenced mostly by changes in stiffness at the knee joint.