ISSN: 1899-1955
Human Movement
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vol. 23
Original paper

Three weeks of combined resisted and assisted in-water training for adolescent sprint backstroke swimming: a case study

Khalid Abdullah Saleh Al-Shdoukhi
Carl Petersen
Jenny Clarke

Department of Sports Science and Physical Activity, University of Hail, Hail, Saudi Arabia
School of Health Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
Hum Mov. 2022;23(4):133-139
Online publish date: 2022/02/04
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Resisted and assisted in-water training methods are often employed in swimming training but their effectiveness remains unsubstantiated for different strokes and age groups. The study aim was to quantify the effects of a 3-week combined assisted and resisted in-water training program on 50- and 100-m adolescent backstroke performance.

In addition to regular swimming training, 9 (5 male, 4 female; age: 15.4 ± 1.7 years; 50-m backstroke FINA points: 346 ± 142) competitive backstroke swimmers performed a combined in-water machine-resisted and bungee-assisted training program 3 days/week with 3 resisted and 3 assisted 25-m sprints per session. Before and after the 3-week training, 50- and 100-m backstroke time trials were undertaken, with stroke rate, heart rate, and rating of perceived exertion collected.

There was a significant small improvement in 100-m backstroke times (3.4 ± 3.4% faster; ES = 0.27, p < 0.01), but only a trivial improvement in 50-m backstroke times (1.0 ± 3.1% faster; ES = 0.07, p = 0.19). Females had substantially greater improvements than males in both 50-m (2.4 ± 2.7% faster vs. –0.2 ± 3.2% slower) and 100-m (5.1 ± 2.6% faster vs. 2.0 ± 3.5% faster) backstroke time trials, but with the small sample size, this warrants further investigation.

We demonstrated that adding a 3-week combined in-water resisted and assisted training was likely more beneficial for the longer 100-m distance; females seemed to benefit more than males.


strength, physiology, youth sport

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