Drafting in swimming is a tactic in which an athlete (drafter) swims in the wave of another athlete (leader). Our aim was to compare the effects of this tactic on the drafter, as far as muscle fatigue, muscle activity, and swimming efficiency are concerned. Fifteen drafters performed three 200 m front crawl trials at a controlled submaximal pace in three configurations: Behind Drafting (BD), Lateral Drafting (LD), and Free Swimming (FS). Muscle fatigue, muscle activity, and swimming efficiency were obtained by surface electromyography (EMG) and video analysis from flexor carpi radialis, triceps brachii, latissimus dorsi, and rectus femoris muscles. The outcome measures were: time slope of Mean Frequency (MNF), for muscle fatigue; time slope of Root Mean Square (RMS), for muscle activity; and Stroke Index (SI) for swimming efficiency. Negative variations of MNF were 5.1 ± 1.7%, 6.6 ± 4.1%, and 11.1 ± 2.7% in BD, LD, and FS, respectively. Statistical significance was found for all cases except for the rectus femoris. Positive variations of RMS were 3.4 ± 1.2%, 4.7 ± 2.7%, and 7.8 ± 4.6% in BD, LD, and FS, respectively. Statistical significance was found only for the slopes of latissimus dorsi in FS and LD. The largest mean in SI was measured in the BD (2.01 m2/s), while the smallest was measured in the FS (1.86 m2/s). BD was found to be the best swimming configuration, in terms of lower muscle fatigue and higher swimming efficiency. Also, LD resulted to be advantageous with respect to FS.

Muscle Fatigue and Swimming Efficiency in Behind and Lateral Drafting

Puce, Luca;Marinelli, Lucio;Mori, Laura;Bove, Marco;Faelli, Emanuela;Fassone, Marco;Cotellessa, Filippo;Trompetto, Carlo
2022

Abstract

Drafting in swimming is a tactic in which an athlete (drafter) swims in the wave of another athlete (leader). Our aim was to compare the effects of this tactic on the drafter, as far as muscle fatigue, muscle activity, and swimming efficiency are concerned. Fifteen drafters performed three 200 m front crawl trials at a controlled submaximal pace in three configurations: Behind Drafting (BD), Lateral Drafting (LD), and Free Swimming (FS). Muscle fatigue, muscle activity, and swimming efficiency were obtained by surface electromyography (EMG) and video analysis from flexor carpi radialis, triceps brachii, latissimus dorsi, and rectus femoris muscles. The outcome measures were: time slope of Mean Frequency (MNF), for muscle fatigue; time slope of Root Mean Square (RMS), for muscle activity; and Stroke Index (SI) for swimming efficiency. Negative variations of MNF were 5.1 ± 1.7%, 6.6 ± 4.1%, and 11.1 ± 2.7% in BD, LD, and FS, respectively. Statistical significance was found for all cases except for the rectus femoris. Positive variations of RMS were 3.4 ± 1.2%, 4.7 ± 2.7%, and 7.8 ± 4.6% in BD, LD, and FS, respectively. Statistical significance was found only for the slopes of latissimus dorsi in FS and LD. The largest mean in SI was measured in the BD (2.01 m2/s), while the smallest was measured in the FS (1.86 m2/s). BD was found to be the best swimming configuration, in terms of lower muscle fatigue and higher swimming efficiency. Also, LD resulted to be advantageous with respect to FS.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11567/1078947
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