The Effect of Plié on the Force and Axial Accelerations of a Jump

The goal of this experiment was to determine if landing in plié versus straight-legged effects the force and x, y, and z-accelerations of a jump. Many dancers incur career-threatening injuries from landing jumps improperly. This experiment hoped to prove that the impact of a jump can be lessened by landing in pliť, therefore ideally preventing such serious injuries. Ten dancers ranging in age from 14-17 were asked to perform five different jumps: a sauté, a cabriole, a pas de chat, an arabesque ton leve, and a tour jete. The dancers performed each jump six times, three landing in plié, and three landing with straight legs. The average force and x, y, and z-acceleration values were then found and analyzed. The x and z-accelerations showed no patterns when comparing the values from landing in plié to landing straight-legged, so those numbers were not analyzed. The force and y-accelerations did show patterns, so two separate two-sample t tests were performed. The t tests showed that the force on the dancerís joints when landing in plié is significantly lower than the force landing straight-legged, and that there is no significant difference in the y-accelerations of the dancer while landing in plié versus straight-legged.

Research Done By:

Sheridan Brown
Lakeview High School

Leanna Lim
Lakeview High School

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