Title

Kinematic Analyses of Parkour Landings From as High as 2.7 Meters

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

3-31-2020

Publication Title

Journal of Human Kinetics

Volume

72

First page number:

15

Last page number:

28

Abstract

During landing tasks, forces and moments are generated by the musculoskeletal system at surface contact to progressively decelerate the velocity of the body (Dufek and Bates, 1990; McNitt-Gray, 1993). When landing after a forward jump, the body’s downward velocity must be decelerated by an upward acceleration, while its forward velocity needs to be decelerated by a backward acceleration. Inappropriate landing patterns can cause excessive loading to the body, resulting in musculoskeletal injuries. The anterior cruciate ligament is commonly injured by abnormal landing patterns during athletic activities (Dai et al., 2015b; Krosshaug et al., 2007). Military training also involves jump-landing tasks such as parachuting, jumping off a vehicle, and traversing a ditch; all which increase exposure to jump-landing associated injury risk (Ekeland, 1997; Owens et al., 2007; Sell et al., 2010). Developing safe and effective landing strategies has implications for both injury prevention and performance training. Investigators have examined the effects of landing heights, distances, and techniques on performers’ motion, impact forces, and their associated risk of injury (Dai et al., 2015a; Dufek and Bates, 1990; McNitt-Gray, 1993). Lower extremity loading increases when the landing height and distance are increased (Dufek and Bates, 1990; McNitt-Gray, 1993; Zhang et al., 2000). Potential strategies to decrease lower extremity loading include landing on the forefoot, increasing knee and hip joint range of motion, and lengthening landing time (Dai et al., 2015a; Devita and Skelly, 1992; Zhang et al., 2000). However, previous findings are based on landing heights less than 1.5 m in combination with traditional landing techniques. An increased landing velocity resulting from a high landing height does not necessarily result in injury if appropriate landing techniques are utilized. As an example, Parkour is a form of acrobatic street gymnastics that has gained public popularity in the last decade (Puddle and Maulder, 2013). One important skill in Parkour is to land safely from high heights (>1.5 m) such as vertical walls. Novel landing techniques with the use of hands and rolling motions have been utilized by Parkour practitioners. Investigators have quantified the effect of Parkour precision and roll landings on landing forces from a landing height of 0.75 m (Puddle and Maulder, 2013). The biomechanics of how Parkour practitioners land from higher heights remains unclear. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to quantify the landing kinematics of Parkour practitioners landing from 0.9, 1.8, and 2.7 m utilizing the squat, forward, roll, and stiff landing techniques. It was hypothesized that the stiff landing would exhibit the least landing time and greatest change in vertical velocity during the early landing, while the roll landing would demonstrate the greatest landing time and least changes in vertical and horizontal velocities during the early landing for all landing heights. In addition, it was hypothesized that the four landing techniques would exhibit different lower extremity kinematics.

Keywords

Jump-landing; Impact; Injury; Performance; Lower extremities

Disciplines

Biomechanics

Language

English

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