The short track speed skating (STSS) race start (i.e. from start line to first block of first corner) is potentially overlooked as a training variable in most elite environments. Although the start is indicated to predict 500 m race outcome, the magnitude of relationship is currently unknown. In limited ice time environments, the start is most commonly trained exclusively on-ice. Thus start training competes with other training variables relevant outside of the 500 m event for training resource time. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis was to systematically determine the relationship between the start and international 500 m race outcome and, if warranted, to determine and evaluate alternative off-ice methods of effective start training. To perform this investigation: tau rank correlations were used to compare skater position entering first corner (i.e. start performance) with race outcome over three years of World Cup competitions and two Olympic Games (Chapter 3). Considering these results, determining the kinematic similarity between the dry-land sprint start and the on-ice start was required as the dry-land sprint start was identified as a potential means to improve on-ice start performance. Previous works performed with long track speed skaters have demonstrated biomechanical similarity between the speed skating and dry-land sprint start; thus, a kinematic comparison of the STSS start and the dry-land sprint start was performed both intra-athlete and with the sprint literature (Chapter 4). The application of these findings warranted an 8 week dry-land sprint start intervention (4 weeks control, 4 weeks intervention) utilizing elite and trained skaters. A crossover design (control followed by intervention) was used to compare changes in on-ice start time pre- to post- over four weeks of 14.43 m dry-land sprint start training (three sets of three starts performed two times per week; Chapter 5).
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Award date||01 Aug 2015|
|Place of Publication||Australia|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|