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Clin J Sport Med. 2012 Jan;22(1):65-9. doi: 10.1097/JSM.0b013e3182420677.

Game performance in ice sledge hockey: an exploratory examination into type of disability and anthropometric parameters.

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Faculty of Rehabilitation, Józef Piłsudski University of Physical Education in Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland.



To compare first disability and anthropometric variables and second disability and game efficiency measures.


Prospective cohort study.


Winter Paralympic Games in Vancouver (2010).


A sample of 54 (age, 30.85 ± 7.99 y) of the 114 elite ice sledge hockey athletes participated in this study. To be included in the analysis, an athlete had to participate for a minimum of 45 minutes in total and in a minimum of 2 games during the tournament.


Athletes were categorized according to type of disability into 4 groups: group 1 (double amputee above and below the knee), group 2 (single amputee above and below the knee), group 3 (spinal cord injury), and group 4 (other physical disabilities, including phocomelia, cerebral palsy, sclerosis multiplex, and lower limb paresis, and players with minimal disability). Before the tournament, athletes completed a Personal Questionnaire Form. Data including anthropometric measurements (seated position and range of arms) and length of the sledge were also collected.


All 20 scheduled games were videotaped using 3 video cameras. The games were analyzed after the tournament by 5 observers. All observations were recorded using the Game Efficiency Sheet for Ice Sledge Hockey developed by the authors. Fourteen game parameters were included for analysis.


The instrument was developed specifically for this project's exploratory analysis. Interobserver and intraobserver reliability were established by statistical analysis (r > 0.93 and r > 0.95, respectively). Significant differences between disability groups were found for training frequency (F3,50 = 4.73, P = 0.006), height (F3,50 = 12.54, P = 0.001), and sledge length (F3,50 = 12.35, P = 0.001). The results of the Tukey honestly significant difference post hoc analyses revealed significant differences between groups 1 and 4 (P = 0.026), 2 and 4 (P = 0.007), and 3 and 4 (P = 0.013) for training frequency. There were also significant differences between groups 1 and 2 (P < 0.001), 1 and 4 (P < 0.001), and 2 and 4 (P = 0.021) for body height. In sledge length, significant differences were observed between groups 1 and 2 (P < 0.001), 1 and 3 (P < 0.001), 1 and 4 (P = 0.016), and 2 and 4 (P = 0.028). There was no strong evidence to support disability group differences in game efficiency measures.


The results may confirm the lack of a need for additional classification in sledge hockey beyond minimum eligibility or may enhance the argument that a classification system may be needed because the lower functioning disabilities are not being represented in the sport.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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