The effect of two additional dry-land active warm-up protocols on the 50-m front-crawl swimming performance
Dalamitros, Athanasios | 2018
Purpose. The purpose of the study was to compare the effectiveness of 2 different dry-land active warm-up protocols on 50-m front-crawl swimming performance, biomechanical variables (stroke rate, stroke length, and stroke index), rate of perceived exertion, and exercise heart rate in swimmers of both genders.Methods. The total of 10 male and 9 female national-level swimmers completed a standardized 1000-m in-water warm-up protocol followed by a 30-min transition phase and a 50-m front-crawl time-trial. During this 30-min period, each swimmer executed, on different occasions, a protocol consisting of either a dynamic stretching routine (stretch) or a power exercise circuit (power) of equal duration (~ 5 min) in a randomized sequence. A control condition (control) including a passive recovery strategy after the in-water warm-up protocol was also analyzed.Results. An improvement in 50-m time-trial performance was demonstrated in male swimmers after executing the power protocol (p = 0.034), while in female swimmers a trend towards faster performance times was revealed after the stretch protocol (p = 0.064). Stroke index was improved after the stretch routine only in female swimmers (p = 0.010). Stroke rate, stroke length, rate of perceived exertion, and exercise heart rate showed no differences among all the 3 conditions in either gender (p > 0.05).Conclusions. Male and female swimmers respond differently to a power or a dynamic stretching protocol. In addition, the variation in responses to different warm-up conditions highlights the importance of individualizing the dry-land warm-up procedure to promote maximum performance during 50-m front-crawl swimming events.