Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
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©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2002) 01, 72 - 79

Research article
Kinematic Instep Kicking Differences Between Elite Female and Male Soccer Players
William Roy Barfield1, , Donald T. Kirkendall2, Bing Yu3
Author Information
1 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina & College of Charleston-Charleston, USA
2 Departments of Orthopaedic Surgery & Exercise & Sport Sciences, University of NC-Chapel Hill, NC, USA
3 Center for Human Movement Science, Division of Physical Therapy, University of NC-Chapel Hill-Chapel Hill, NC, USA

William Roy Barfield
‚úČ Department of Orthopaedic Surgery-Medical University of South Carolina & College of Charleston-Charleston, SC 29425, USA
Email: barfielb@musc.edu
Publish Date
Received: 04-06-2002
Accepted: 15-07-2002
Published (online): 01-09-2002
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ABSTRACT

The rapid rise in female participation in soccer worldwide has not been followed by a corresponding increase in the number of studies biomechanically that target female kicking patterns to determine if differences exist between males and females. The objectives of this study were to examine kinematic instep kicking differences between elite female and male soccer players in dominant and nondominant limbs. Eight elite soccer players, six females and two males, volunteered as subjects in the study. Subjects took a two-step angled approach of 45-60 degrees to a stationary soccer ball positioned between two force platforms and kicked the ball with the instep portion of the foot as hard as possible into netting which was draped from the ceiling. Ball velocity was the dependent variable. We evaluated six additional variables that have previously been shown to be important predictors of instep kicking ball speed. The males generally kicked the ball faster than the females and displayed greater kinematic variables, including maximum toe velocity, ball contact ball velocity, mean toe velocity, mean toe acceleration, and ankle velocity at ball contact, all of which contributed to faster ball speed. There was one exception. One of the elite females kicked faster than the two elite males and demonstrated higher or similar kinematic patterns when compared with the males. Our conclusions were that females do not instep kick the ball as fast as males, but there are exceptions, as our data demonstrates.

Key words: Soccer kicking, biomechanics, gender differences


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