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Prosthet Orthot Int. 2012 Sep;36(3):306-11. doi: 10.1177/0309364612446651.

Sprint prostheses used at the Paralympics: a proposal for an assessment method to maintain fairness.

Author information

1
Bournemouth University, Poole, Dorset, UK. brdyer@bournemouth.ac.uk

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Unique to sport with a disability such as those performed at the Paralympics, the need to improve the performance of lower limb prostheses can conflict with the need to provide an equal opportunity to win whilst still needing to encourage and maximise participation.

OBJECTIVES:

This paper extends previous research by attempting to propose a method suitable for sports governing bodies to help any functional assessment of sprinting lower limb prosthesis technology in the future.

STUDY DESIGN:

The study comprises two elements: 1) A historical review and evaluation of drop jump assessment techniques. 2) A pilot test of a candidate using two mechanically different lower limb regions.

METHODS:

A unilateral drop jump technique is assessed historically as an evaluation technique for sprinters with a lower-limb amputation. Further, a unilateral drop jump using mechanically altered lower limbs is piloted.

RESULTS:

The historical review provides no evidence to suggest that this technique is not suitable for athlete participants. The pilot trials show a statistically stable and repeatable method of demonstrating a mechanical deficiency of one limb to another. Six jumps are suitable to obtain stable results but the mechanical behaviour of one limb may eventually change based on accumulated fatigue.

CONCLUSIONS:

The unilateral drop jump is shown to be viable for application to an athlete population with a lower limb unilateral amputation.

PMID:
22918907
DOI:
10.1177/0309364612446651
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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