Linear Acceleration at Head Impact in Collegiate Divers: A Pilot Study

in International Journal of Athletic Therapy and Training
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  • 1 Northern Illinois University
  • 2 University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign
  • 3 Carle Foundation Hospital
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There is minimal biomechanical research examining head impacts in noncollision sport, such as diving. This pilot study quantified the number of head impacts and magnitude of linear head acceleration in collegiate divers. Three participants wore instrumented swim caps for 10 practice sessions. A total of 1,271 dives were recorded and analyzed. Acceleration at impact ranged from 24.1g to 33.3g for 1-m dives and from 31.6g to 38.4g for 3-m dives. Simple main effects were observed for dive type (p > .001) and dive distance (p > .001). The current data suggest diving athletes experience considerable head acceleration, yet more research is needed to understand the potential implications.

Wood is with the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, College of Education, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL, USA. Tablerion and Sosnoff are with the Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, College of Applied Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, Champaign, IL, USA. Sosnoff is now with School of Health Professions and the Department of Physical Therapy, Rehabilitation Sciences and Athletic Training at University of Kansas Medical Center. Ballard is with the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, Champaign, IL, USA. Zimmerman is with the Carle Foundation Hospital, Urbana, IL, USA.

Sosnoff (jsosnoff@kumc.edu) is corresponding author.
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