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J Electromyogr Kinesiol. 2013 Dec;23(6):1467-73. doi: 10.1016/j.jelekin.2013.08.001. Epub 2013 Sep 3.

Unweighted state as a sidestep preparation improve the initiation and reaching performance for basketball players.

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Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan; Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Japan.


The preparatory motion of a defensive motion in contact sport such as basketball should be small and involve landing on both feet for strict time and motion constraints. We thus proposed the movement creating a unweighted state. Ten basketball players performed a choice reaction sidestepping task with and without the voluntary, continuous vertical fluctuation movement. The results indicated that the preparatory movement shortened the time of their sidestep initiation (301 vs. 314 ms, p = 0.011) and reaching performance (883 vs. 910 ms, p = 0.018) but did not increase their peak ground reaction force or movement velocity. The mechanism of the improvement was estimated to be the following: in the preparation phase, the vertical body fluctuation created the force fluctuation; after the direction signal, the unweighted state can shorten the time required to initiate the sidestepping (unweighted: 279 ms; weighted: 322 ms, p = 0.002); around the initiation phase, the dropping down of the body and weighted state can contribute to the reaching performance. We conducted additional experiment investigating muscle-tendon-complex dynamics and muscle activity using ultrasound device and electromyography. The result suggests that the building up of active state of muscle might explain the improvement of sidestepping performance.


Biomechanics; Coaching; Preparatory motion; Reaction

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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