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Ten male recreational runners were filmed using three-dimensional cinematography while running on a treadmill at 3.8 m/s, 4.5 m/s, and 5.4 m/s. A 14-segment mathematical model was used to examine the influence of the arm swing on the three-dimensional motion of the body center of mass (CM), and on the vertical and horizontal propulsive impulses (“lift” and “drive”) on the body over the contact phase of the running cycle. The arms were found to reduce the horizontal excursions of the body CM both front to back and side to side, thus tending to make a runner's horizontal velocity more constant. The vertical range of motion of the body CM was increased by the action of the arms. The arms were found to make a small but important contribution to lift, roughly 5–10% of the total. This contribution increased with running speed. The arms were generally not found to contribute to drive, although considerable variation existed between subjects. Consistent with the CM results, the arms were found to reduce the changes in forward velocity of the runner rather than increasing them. It was concluded that there is no apparent advantage of the “classic” style of swinging the arms directly forward and backward over the style that most distance runners adopt of letting the arms cross over slightly in front. The crossover, in fact, helps reduce side-to-side excursions of the body CM mentioned above, hence promoting a more constant horizontal velocity.
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... In the transverse plane, trunk rotations are not fully compensated by the head during forward walking and running tasks, as shown by a primarily trunk dominant coordination pattern during stance while running (94.5%), but greater contributions from the head have been observed with increased visual task demands (Cromwell et al., 2004;Lim et al., 2020). To successfully change direction, the CoM must be laterally moved toward the new direction of travel; thus this may require a different trunk control strategy than forward running, as the transition from a forward running task to a new direction may be accompanied by greater trunk range of motion (Preece et al., 2016;Weir, Stillman, et al., 2019;) and a smaller vertical CoM range of motion (Hinrichs, Cavanagh, & Williams, 1987;. Collectively, these findings suggest: 1) trunk rotations are not fully compensated by the head in the transverse plane during forward locomotion; and 2) demands placed on both the head and trunk have the potential to modify head-trunk intrinsic coordination dynamics. ...
... Our first hypothesis was partially met, as we observed greater transverse plane head and trunk motion during the sidestepping compared with running. However, we observed greater vertical trunk displacement as a result of direction change which contradicts prior observations (Hinrichs et al., 1987;Wyatt et al., 2019). We directly compared trunk CoM in the same sample while prior literature reported whole body CoM in two separate studies with different protocols and different samples, which may have led to different findings than what we report here. ...
Conference Paper
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