Biomechanics of the Badminton Smash
This excellent blog post
by Harley Towler summarises the current research on factors associated with increased shuttlecock speed in the badminton smash. It is an incredibly detailed write-up of the literature, in terms that are hopefully understandable for players, coaches, and researchers alike. On a personal note, it’s great to see our studies on smash technique
and racket-shuttlecock impact characteristics
get a mention.
Biarticular Joint Torques in Simulations of Sporting Technique
In our recent review article
on the use of simulation models to predict ‘optimal’ sporting technique, we discussed Martin Lewis’ work on biarticular (two joint) torque representations. Forward-dynamics simulation models of maximal effort sporting movements have predominately adopted monoarticular (single joint) representations, neglecting any unique effect of muscles that cross two joints (e.g. the hamstrings). I was therefore particularly interested to read Lewis et al.‘s new paper
, which concluded that a two joint representation is likely to be more appropriate for simulating dynamic tasks requiring large joint torques and near-maximal joint velocities. This builds upon their previous dynamometer method
and applications at the ankle
, and hip
A Gymnastics Deep-Dive
For anybody interested in biomechanics or sporting technique, gymnastics offers many ideal case studies. The latest of these is Simone Biles’ performance of the ‘Yurchenko double pike’. If (like me) you have no idea what this is or why it’s so impressive, grab a coffee and have a scroll through this Twitter thread
. Suzanne Boswell uses video examples to illustrate the historical development of this vault technique and each of its constituent parts. For more on the biomechanics and motor control of gymnastics, you can check out this lecture
by Gareth Irwin.