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The effects of a six week depth jumping program on the vertical jumping ability of figure skaters Keohane, Anne Louise

Abstract

With the current emphasis on jumps and jump combinations in competitive figure skating, training methods to improve jumping ability would be of great benefit to figure skaters. To be a successful jumper, a figure skater needs leg power in addition to skill and technique. Jump combinations, comparatively new elements of free skating, require leg power combined with balance, positioning, and timing. To develop the leg power required in jumping, depth jumping was tested as a potential training method for skaters. Depth jumping, a relatively new training technique, is designed to improve leg power and the reactive ability of jumpers. In performing a depth jump, the athlete jumps down from an elevated surface and immediately takes off for a second jump upon contact with the floor. The emphasis is on immediate takeoff after landing from a previous jump so that the athlete learns to use the elastic recoil of muscle to produce an additive effect on jump height. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the effects of a six week depth jumping program on vertical jumping ability on and off the ice. A subproblem of this study was to determine the relationship between vertical jumping ability on the ground and on the ice. The sample consisted of twenty-seven female figure skaters from the Vancouver area (mean age 14.9 years) who volunteered to take part. Subjects were randomly assigned to experimental (n = 14) and control (n = 13) groups. The experimental group participated in a six week depth jump training program conducted off the ice in addition to their regular training on and off the ice. The control group did not participate in the depth jump program but participated in their regular training on and off the ice. The depth jump program consisted of two preparatory exercises and five training exercises performed from various heights (12", 15", 18", 21"). Training sessions were held twice per week for the first three weeks and three times per week for the last three weeks. The study included a total of sixteen training sessions. All subjects were tested at the beginning, middle, and end of the study on the Sargent Jump Test and filmed (pre and post only) on the ice performing a single loop, single loop combination jump. Films were analyzed on the Vanguard Motion Analyzer. The following hypotheses were tested for significance at the .05 level: 1. As a result of depth jump training, there is a significant increase in vertical jumping ability on the ground. 2. As a result of depth jump training, there is a significant increase in the height of the second jump of a single loop, single loop combination jump. 3. There is a positive linear relationship between vertical jumping ability on the ground and vertical jumping ability on the ice. Multivariate analysis of variance revealed that hypothesis #1 is supported at the .01 level and hypothesis #2 is supported at the .05 level of significance. The Pearson Product Moment Correlation showed that hypothesis #3 is also accepted at the .05 level.

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