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This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY). The focus of this paper was to identify crucial kinematic factors that contribute to the countermovement jump (CMJ) height between different skilled levels of female volleyball players.
Cite this paper: Cheng Tu Hsieh, Lung Cheng, Kinematic Factors in Countermovement Jump for Female Volleyball Players with Different Skill Levels, International Journal of Sports Science, Vol. IntroductionThe ability to jump is so crucial that it has been studied extensively over the last few decades. The results of standard multiple regression indicated that the best model accounted 64% and 45% of the variance in the jump height for skilled and non-skilled group, respectively, with different combinations of variables during the preparation phase. In particular, the countermovement jump (CMJ) is a fundamental movement for athletes in multiple sports.
A small portion of variance in jump height (11% and 22%) was accounted for during the propulsive phase for both groups. In volleyball, CMJ is essential for both defensive and offensive performances such as jump setting, standing (in-place) blocking, and jousting. The skilled group exhibited more contributors from the preparation phase of the countermovement jump which indicated that skilled female volleyball players better utilize stretch-shortening cycle in jumping performance resulting in higher jump height than non-skilled female volleyball players. This also confirms the importance of storing and re-utilizing energy for jumping performance. Additionally, hip extension velocity and trunk angular displacement were essential for jump height during propulsive phase.
Several pedagogical guidelines are provided to improve female volleyball players’ CMJ performance.
Argon-Vargas and Gross [6, 7] and Dowling and Vamos [1] identified multiple contributors to jump height in different mechanical levels among and within subjects.
Both studies concluded that the best model for jump height was peak and average mechanical power (accounted 83-88% of the variance).

Vanezis and Lees [12] (2005) concluded that muscle capability was the main factor that differentiated good and poor jumpers. Although power, force, and takeoff velocity are the strongest predictors of jump height, they are not practical instructional variables to enhance sport performance outside of a laboratory setting. For example, force and power are not directly observable traits without equipment and subject to bias based on outcome. Finally, takeoff velocity and gravity dictate the vertical displacement of CoM after takeoff and is actually the outcome of jumping performance.
However, there are several other limitations (besides the lack of practical pedagogical application) in the literature that need to be addressed. First, studies identified men and women have different biomechanical parameters for the same movement [5, 8, 9].
Finally, despite the similarity of the term CMJ, the performance outcome and the related biomechanical contributors would most likely differ according to specific background training of athletes and the particular sport. The heterogeneous samples of the previous studies including sample population and sport type fail to provide sport-specific and pedagogically significant information for female volleyball players. The first goal is to investigate the important kinematic variables for the CMJ jump height and identify the differences of the CMJ kinematic variables in different skill level of female volleyball players. Furthermore, the second aim of this current study is to provide useful and effective pedagogical information to improve female volleyball players’ jumping performance.2. All 20 participants had no injury during and prior to the data collection that could interfere the jumping performance. All policies and procedures for the use of human subjects were followed and approved by the university Institutional Review Board. Every player was required to warm-up for at least five minutes by stretching all major muscle groups for jump performance and practicing several CMJ jumps in front of the cameras in the university biomechanics lab. E., 2006, Maturation leads to gender differences in landing force and vertical jump performance a longitudinal study.

Data were collected from the tenth frame before the movement onset until the tenth frame after the peak of the jump. Jump height was determined from the height of CoM at instant of takeoff to the peak of the jump. The linear and angular kinematics variables of preparation and propulsive phases for CMJ were calculated. The preparation phase started from the beginning of downward movement to the lowest position of CoM. C., 2010, Relationship between kinematic factors and countermovement jump height in trained track and field athletes.
J., 1986, A Fortran package for generalized, cross-validatory spline smoothing and differentiation. G., 1996, The effectiveness of a modified plyometric program on power and the vertical jump.
M., 1996, Eccentric contractions require unique activation strategies by the nervous system.
S., 2007, Eccentric loading and range of knee joint motion effects on performance enhancement in vertical jumping. 2011, Study of the technical and tactical variables determining set win or loss in top-level European men’s volleyball.

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