Intraindividual Movement Variability Within the 5 m Water Polo Shot

in Journal of Applied Biomechanics
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  • 1 Australian Catholic University
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The purpose of this study was to explore movement variability of throwing arm and ball release parameters during the water polo shot and to compare variability between successful (hit) and unsuccessful (miss) outcomes. Seven injury free, subelite, females completed 10 trials of the 5 m water polo penalty shot. Intraindividual coefficient of variation percentage (CV%) values were calculated for elbow and wrist angular displacement, wrist linear velocity and ball release parameters (height, angle and velocity). Coordination variability (elbow/wrist angular displacement) was calculated as the CV% of the mean cross-correlation coefficient. Elbow and wrist displacement variability decreased to 80% of throwing time then increased toward release. Wrist linear velocity variability reduced toward release. Individual CV% values ranged between 1.6% and 23.5% (all trials), 0.4% and 20.6% (hit), and 0.4% and 27.1% (miss). Ball release height and velocity variability were low (< 12%; all trials) whereas release angle variability was high (>27%; all trials). Cross-correlation results were inconclusive. Roles of the elbow and wrist in production of stable ball release height and velocity and control of the highly variable release angle in the water polo shot are discussed and suggested for further study. Optimal levels of variability warrant future investigation.

Paul G. Taylor, Raul Landeo, and Jennifer Coogan are with the School of Exercise Science, Australian Catholic University, Australia. Address author correspondence to Paul G. Taylor at paul.taylor@acu.edu.au.

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