Date of Award

Fall 2020

Rights

Access is available to all users

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS) in Physical Education: Exercise Science

Department

Physical Education, Health and Recreation

Abstract

Most research in ski sports performance, injury, and sport physiological demands focuses on alpine ski racing. Very little research is available describing aerial and moguls ski competitors. Purpose: Compare lower extremity strength limb symmetry index (LSI) and relative strength (RS) among alpine, mogul, and aerials ski competitors. Methods: Archival data from 156 males and females from the U.S. Ski Team at Olympic, World Cup, and national levels were analyzed to compare RS and LSI among ski sports. Strength data consisted of maximal isometric bilateral squat strength values from each leg independently. A 3x2x2 factorial ANOVA was conducted to determine differences and interactions between sex, competitive level, and sport type on LSI. A second factorial ANOVA was conducted to compare RS among the same factors. Results: The main effects of sport type (p = 0.194), competitive level (p = 0.061), and sex (p = 0.260) were not significant for LSI. There were no significant interactions between independent variables for LSI. The main effects of sport type (p = 0.041) and sex (p < 0.001) were significant for relative strength. Alpine racers were significantly stronger than moguls (p = 0.002) and aerials (p = 0.001) competitors. Males were significantly stronger than females (p < 0.001) in all three disciplines. No other significant findings for main effects or interactions were found. Conclusion: The low presence and variation in LSI may indicate that a bilateral maximum strength test may not be ideal for identifying LSI. Strength differences among sports may exist due to exposure to forces associated with speed. Sex differences in relative strength may be due to anthropometric variations.

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