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Herbert Wagner, Michael Buchecker, Serge P. von Duvillard and Erich Müller

Purpose:

The aims of the present study were: (1) to compare the differences in the ball release speed and throwing accuracy between the ABOVE and SIDE throw; (2) to analyze kinematic differences of these two throwing techniques; and (3) to give practical applications to team handball coaches and players.

Methods:

Ball release speed, throwing accuracy, and kinematics were measured via the Vicon MX 13 (Vicon Peak, Oxford, UK) from 12 male elite right-handed team handball players.

Results:

Results of our study suggest that the two throwing techniques differ significantly (P < .0073) in the angles and/or angular velocities of the trunk (flexion, left tilt and rotation) and shoulder (flexion and abduction) of the throwing arm that result in a significantly different ball release speed (1.4 ± 0.8 m/s; P < .001) and that throwing accuracy was not significantly different.

Conclusion:

Our results indicated that the different position of the hand at ball release of the ABOVE and SIDE throws is primarily caused by different trunk flexion and tilt angles that lead to differences in ball release speed but not in throwing accuracy, and that the participants try to move their throwing arm similarly in both throwing techniques.

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Herbert Wagner, Patrick Fuchs, Andrea Fusco, Philip Fuchs, Jeffrey W. Bell and Serge P. von Duvillard

Purpose: Biological differences between men and women are well known; however, literature addressing knowledge about the influence of sex on specific and general performance in team handball is almost nonexistent. Consequently, the aim of the study was to assess and compare specific and general physical performance in male and female elite team-handball players, to determine if the differences are consequential for general compared with specific physical performance characteristics and the relationship between general and specific physical performance. Methods: Twelve male and 10 female elite team-handball players performed a game-based performance test, upper- and lower-body strength and power tests, a sprinting test, and an incremental treadmill running test. Results: Significant differences (P < .05) between male and female players were found for peak oxygen uptake and total running time during the treadmill test, 30-m sprinting time, leg-extension strength, trunk- and shoulder-rotation torque, and countermovement-jump height, as well as offense and defense time, ball velocity, and jump height in the game-based performance test. An interaction (sex × test) was found for time and oxygen uptake, and except shoulder-rotation torque and ball velocity in women, the authors found only a low relationship between specific and general physical performance. Conclusion: The results of the study revealed that male players are heavier, taller, faster, and stronger; jump higher; and have better aerobic performance. However, female players performed relatively better in the team-handball-specific tests than in the general tests. The findings also suggest that female players should focus more on strength training.