Improving mobility performance in wheelchair basketball

Thom T.J. Veeger, Annemarie M.H. de Witte, Monique A.M. Berger, Rienk M.A. van der Slikke, Dirkjan H.E.J. Veeger, Marco J.M. Hoozemans*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Objective: This study aimed to investigate which characteristics of athlete, wheelchair and athlete-wheelchair interface are the best predictors of wheelchair basketball mobility performance. Design: A total of 60 experienced wheelchair basketball players performed a wheelchair mobility performance test to assess their mobility performance. To determine which variables were the best predictors of mobility performance, forward stepwise linear regression analyses were performed on a set of 33 characteristics, including 10 athlete, 19 wheelchair, and 4 athlete-wheelchair interface characteristics. Results: A total of 8 of the characteristics turned out to be significant predictors of wheelchair basketball mobility performance. Classification, experience, maximal isometric force, wheel axis height, and hand rim diameter-which both are interchangeable with each other and wheel diameter-camber angle, and the vertical distance between shoulder and rear wheel axis-which was interchangeable with seat height-were positively associated with mobility performance. The vertical distance between the front seat and the footrest was negatively associated with mobility performance. Conclusion: With this insight, coaches and biomechanical specialists are provided with statistical findings to determine which characteristics they could focus on best to improve mobility performance. Six out of 8 predictors are modifiable and can be optimized to improve mobility performance. These adjustments could be carried out both in training (maximal isometric force) and in wheelchair configurations (eg, camber angle).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-66
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of sport rehabilitation
Volume28
Issue number1
Early online date16 Oct 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019

Keywords

  • Athletic performance
  • Paralympic
  • Wheelchair configuration
  • Wheelchair-athlete interface

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