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The effects of ball impact location and grip tightness on the arm, racquet and ball for one-handed tennis backhand groundstrokes

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journal contribution
posted on 18.05.2012 by Mark King, Behzat B. Kentel, Sean Mitchell
A torque-driven, 3D computer simulation model of an arm–racquet system was used to investigate the effects of ball impact location and grip tightness on the arm, racquet and ball during one-handed tennis backhand groundstrokes. The stringbed was represented by nine point masses connected to each other and the racquet frame with elastic springs and three torsional spring-dampers between the hand and the racquet were used to represent griptightness. For each perturbation of nine impact locations and grip tightness, simulations were run for a 50 ms period starting with ball–racquetimpact. Simulations showed that during off-centre impacts below the longitudinal axis of the racquet, the wrist was forced to flex up to 16° more with up to six times more wrist extension torque when compared to a centre impact simulation. Perturbing griptightness had no substantial effect on centre impact simulations. However, for off-centre impacts (below the longitudinal axis of the racquet) a tight grip condition resulted in a substantial decrease in racquet rotation within the hand (less than 2°) and an increase of 6° in wrist flexion angle when compared to the equivalent simulation with a normal grip. In addition there was approximately 20% more wrist extension torque when compared with equivalent off-centre impact simulation with a normal grip. Consequently off-centre impacts below the longitudinal axis of the racquet may be a substantial contributing factor for tennis elbow injuries with a tight grip aggravating the effect due to high eccentric wrist extension torques and forced wrist flexion.

History

School

  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Citation

KING, M.A., KENTEL, B.B. and MITCHELL, S.R., 2012. The effects of ball impact location and grip tightness on the arm, racquet and ball for one-handed tennis backhand groundstrokes. Journal of Biomechanics, 45 (6), pp. 1048 - 1052

Publisher

© Elsevier

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publication date

2012

Notes

This article was published in the Journal of Biomechanics [© Elsevier] and the definitive version is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbiomech.2011.12.028

ISSN

0021-9290

eISSN

1873-2380

Language

en

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