Ibero-American Journal of Exercise and Sports Psychology

OBSERVATIONAL STUDY OF THE READY AND SET PHASES OF BLOCK STARTS IN TRACK EVENTS

Abstract

Daniel Lapresa, Ricardo Solano, Javier Arana, M. Teresa Anguera y Sonia Aragón

We designed an ad hoc observation instrument for analyzing and interpreting the ready and set phases of block starts in track events. To test the reliability, validity, and functionality of the instrument, we analyzed datasets corresponding to six block starts by five junior female athletes. The reliability of the instrument was shown by calculating Cohen’s kappa coefficient for quantitative intraobserver agreement using the order parameter (κ = .970). Validity was demonstrated using generalizability theory (e2 = .00), which also showed that the number of athletes (e2 = .997) and starts included in the sample (e2 = 1) were sufficient to achieve the desired level of measurement precision. The functionality of the instrument was tested by searching for hidden temporal patterns in the datasets using the software program THEME. We detected specific technical differences (adjustment and error) both within and between athletes with respect to the ideal starting technique.

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