Relation of elite rifle shooters’ technique-test measures to competition performance

Purpose: To describe the long-term changes in shooting technique in relation to competition performances in elite air-rifle shooters. Methods: Seventeen elite shooters completed simulated air-rifle shooting-competition series in 3 consecutive seasons, participating on 15 ± 7 testing occasions. Shooting score and aiming-point-trajectory variables were obtained with an optoelectronic shooting device, and postural-balance variables were measured with force platform. Shooters’ competition results were collected from all international and national competitions during the 3-y period. Results: Mean test score, stability of hold, aiming accuracy, cleanness of triggering, and postural balance improved during the 3-y period (ANOVA, time, P < .05-.01). Seasonal mean test results in stability of hold (R = -.70, P = .000) and cleanness of triggering (R = -.75, P = .000) were related to competition performances. Changes in stability of hold (R = -.61, P = .000) and cleanness of triggering (R = -.39, P = .022) were also related to the changes in competition performances. Postural balance in shooting direction was more related to cleanness of triggering (R = .57, P = .000), whereas balance in cross-shooting direction was more related to stability of hold (R = .70, P = .000). Conclusion: The shooting-technique testing used in the current study seems to be a valid and useful tool for long-term performance assessment. Stability of hold, cleanness of triggering, and postural balance can be further developed even at the elite level, resulting in improved competition performances.
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Subjects: shooting rifle shooting technique biomechanics stability posture balance
Notations: technical sports
DOI: 10.1123/ijspp.2015-0211
Published in: International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
Published: 2016
Volume: 11
Issue: 5
Pages: 671-677
Document types: article
Language: English
Level: advanced