The validity and reliability of the "my Jump App" for measuring jump height of the elderly

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Abstract

Background: The ability to jump has been related to muscle strength and power, speed and amplitude of the lower limbs movements, and specifically for the elderly, the vertical jump has been shown to be a good predictor of functional capacity and risk of falling. The use of a mobile application (App) which can measure the vertical jump (i.e., iPhone App My Jump) has recently emerged as a simple, cheap and very practical tool for evaluation of jump ability. However, the validity of this tool for the elderly population has not been tested yet. The elderly usually perform very low jumps and therefore the signal-to-noise ratio may compromise the validity and reliability of this method. Thus, the aim of the current study was to verify the validity and reliability of the iPhone App "My Jump" for the evaluation of countermovement jump (CMJ) height within an elderly population. Methods: After familiarization, 41 participants performed three CMJs assessed via a contact mat and the My Jump App. The intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was used to verify the relative reliability, while the coefficient of variation (CV%) and the typical error of measurement (TEM) were used to verify the absolute reliability. Pearson's correlation coefficient was used to verify the strength of the relationship between methods (i.e., concurrent validity), a Bland-Altman plot to show their agreement, and the Student's t-test to identify systematic bias between them. For reliability analyses, all jumps were considered (i.e., 123). All jumps (i.e., 123), the average height of each attempt (i.e., 41), and the highest jump, were considered for validity analyses. Results: The CMJ height of the highest jump was 10.78 ± 5.23 cm with contact mat, and 10.87 ± 5.32 with My Jump App, with an identified systematic bias of 0.096 cm (P = 0.007). There was a nearly perfect correlation between methods (r = 0.999; P = 0.000, in all cases) with a very good agreement observed (0.3255 to -0.5177 cm, 0.2797 to -0.5594 cm, and 0.3466 to -0.6264 cm, for highest jump height, average jump height, and all jump heights, respectively). The ICC of the My Jump App was 0.948, the TEM was 1.150 cm, and the CV was 10.10%. Conclusion: Our results suggest that the My Jump App is a valid and reliable tool compared to the contact mat for evaluating vertical jump performance in the elderly Therefore, it allows a simple and practical assessment of lower limbs' power in this population. For the elderly, as well as for other populations with low jumping heights, the highest jump height and the average jump height could be used indistinctly.

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Cruvinel-Cabral, R. M., Oliveira-Silva, I., Medeiros, A. R., Claudino, J. G., Jiménez-Reyes, P., & Boullosa, D. A. (2018). The validity and reliability of the “my Jump App” for measuring jump height of the elderly. PeerJ, 2018(10). https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.5804

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