Does amputation side influence sprint performances in athletes using running-specific prostheses?

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Abstract

© 2015, Hobara et al.Background: For athletes using running-specific prostheses (RSPs), current Paralympic guidelines for track events are generally based on level of amputation, not side of amputation. Although 200- and 400-m sprint races are performed in a counterclockwise direction, little is known about the effects of amputation side on race performance in athletes with unilateral lower limb amputation. The study aim was to test whether athletes using RSPs on their left side have slower race times than those using RSPs on their right side. Findings: Athletes with unilateral lower limb amputation (N = 59 in total) participating in elite-level 200-m races were analyzed from publicly available Internet broadcasts. These races included the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Paralympics, and the International Paralympic Committee Athletics World Championships in 2011 and 2013. For each athlete the official race time and amputation side were determined. There was no significant difference in number of participants and race time between left and right side amputees in T42 men, T44 men, and T44 women. Conclusion: The results of the present study suggest that sprint performance of athletes using RSPs is not affected by amputation side on a standard 400-m track.

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Hobara, H., Potthast, W., Sano, Y., Müller, R., Kobayashi, Y., Heldoorn, T. A., & Mochimaru, M. (2015). Does amputation side influence sprint performances in athletes using running-specific prostheses? SpringerPlus, 4(1), 1–3. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40064-015-1470-0

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