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Effects of camber on the ergonomics of propulsion in wheelchair athletes

journal contribution
posted on 26.06.2014, 13:59 by Barry Mason, Lucas H.V. van der Woude, Sonja de Groot, Vicky Goosey-Tolfrey
Purpose: To examine the effects of rear-wheel camber on the physiological and biomechanical responses during manual wheelchair propulsion in highly trained wheelchair athletes. Methods: Participants (N = 14) pushed on a motorized treadmill (2.2 m·s-1, 0.7% gradient) in four standardized camber conditions (15°, 18°, 20°, and 24°). Standardization was achieved by controlling seat height, the distance between top dead center of the main wheels and "toe-in toe-out" across all camber settings. Power output (PO) and cardiorespiratory measures were collected for each camber setting. Three-dimensional upper body joint kinematics were also analyzed via two high-speed video cameras (100 Hz). One-way ANOVA with repeated measures was applied to all data with statistical significance accepted when P < 0.05. Results: A significantly higher PO was observed for 24° camber (24.3 W) in relation to 15° (20.3 W) and 18° (21.3 W), and also for 20° (23.3 W) in relation to 15°. This resulted in an improvement in mechanical efficiency (ME) for both 24° (6.8%) and 20° (6.7%) compared with 15° (5.9%). However, significantly higher oxygen uptake (reduced economy) and HR responses were observed for 24° (1.04 L·min-1; 105 bpm) compared with 15° (0.98 L·min-1; 102 bpm) and 18° (0.97 L·min-1; 102 bpm). Also, significantly greater ranges of motion were established for shoulder flexion and elbow extension during the push phase for 24° and were likely to have contributed toward the increased oxygen cost in this setting. Conclusions: This study revealed that 20° and 24° camber improved the ME of wheelchair propulsion in highly trained wheelchair athletes, yet these increased external power requirements and reduced the economy.

History

School

  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Published in

MEDICINE AND SCIENCE IN SPORTS AND EXERCISE

Volume

43

Issue

2

Pages

319 - 326 (8)

Citation

MASON, B. ... et al, 2011. Effects of camber on the ergonomics of propulsion in wheelchair athletes. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 43 (2), pp. 319 - 326.

Publisher

Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins / © American College of Sports Medicine

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Publication date

2011

Notes

This article is closed access.

ISSN

0195-9131

Language

en

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