Int J Sports Med 2014; 35(08): 670-675
DOI: 10.1055/s-0033-1358473
Training & Testing
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Upper-limb Power Test in Rock-climbing

G. Laffaye
1  UR CIAMS – Motor Control and Perception Group, Sport Sciences Department, Université Paris-Sud, Orsay, France
,
J.-M. Collin
2  Motor Control and Perception Group, Sport Sciences Department, Université Paris-Sud, Orsay, France
,
G. Levernier
2  Motor Control and Perception Group, Sport Sciences Department, Université Paris-Sud, Orsay, France
,
J. Padulo
3  Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of “Tor Vergata”, Rome, Italy
4  SPO Sport Performance Optimization Lab, CNMSS, Tunis, Tunisia
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History



accepted after revision 27 September 2013

Publication Date:
19 February 2014 (eFirst)

Abstract

The goal of the present study was to validate a new ecological power-test on athletes of different levels and to assess rock climbers’ profiles (boulderers vs. route climbers). 34 athletes divided into novice, skilled and elite groups performed the arm-jump board test (AJ). Power, time, velocity, and efficiency index were recorded. Validity was assessed by comparing the distance with the value extracted from the accelerometer (500 Hz) and the reliability of intra- and inter-session scores. Moreover, a principal component analysis (PCA) was used to assess the climbers’ profiles. The AJ test was quite valid, showing a low systematic bias of −0.88 cm (−1.25%) and low limits of agreement (<6%), and reliable ( Intra-class correlation coefficient=0.98 and CV<5%), and was able to distinguish between the 3 samples (p<0.0001). There was a good correlation between relative upper-limb power (r=0.70; p<0.01) and the AJ score. Moreover, the PCA revealed an explosive profile for boulderers and either a weak and quick or slow profile for route climbers, revealing a biomechanical signature of the sub-discipline. The AJ test provides excellent absolute and relative reliabilities for climbing, and can effectively distinguish between climbing athletes of different competitive levels. Thus, the AJ may be suitable for field assessment of upper limb strength in climbing practitioners.