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Hum Mov Sci. 2012 Feb;31(1):78-90. doi: 10.1016/j.humov.2011.05.005. Epub 2011 Aug 10.

Movement variability and skill level of various throwing techniques.

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Department of Sport Science and Kinesiology, University of Salzburg, Austria.


In team-handball, skilled athletes are able to adapt to different game situations that may lead to differences in movement variability. Whether movement variability affects the performance of a team-handball throw and is affected by different skill levels or throwing techniques has not yet been demonstrated. Consequently, the aims of the study were to determine differences in performance and movement variability for several throwing techniques in different phases of the throwing movement, and of different skill levels. Twenty-four team-handball players of different skill levels (n=8) performed 30 throws using various throwing techniques. Upper body kinematics was measured via an 8 camera Vicon motion capture system and movement variability was calculated. Results indicated an increase in movement variability in the distal joint movements during the acceleration phase. In addition, there was a decrease in movement variability in highly skilled and skilled players in the standing throw with run-up, which indicated an increase in the ball release speed, which was highest when using this throwing technique. We assert that team-handball players had the ability to compensate an increase in movement variability in the acceleration phase to throw accurately, and skilled players were able to control the movement, although movement variability decreased in the standing throw with run-up.

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