An assessment of swinger techniques for the playground swing oscillatory motion
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionComputer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, 15(10), 1103-1109 http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10255842.2011.572280
Much attention has been devoted to how playground swing amplitudes are built up by swinger techniques, i.e. body actions. However, very little attention has been given to the requirements that such swinger techniques place on the swinger himself. The purpose of this study was to find out whether different swinger techniques yield significantly different maximum torques, endurance and coordinative skills, and also to identify preferable techniques. We modeled the seated swinger as a rigid dumbbell and compared three different techniques. A series of computer simulations was run with each technique, testing performance with different body rotational speeds, delayed onset of body rotation, and different body mass distributions, as swing amplitudes were brought up towards 90° . One technique was found extremely sensitive to the timing of body actions, limiting swing amplitudes to 50° and 8° when body action was delayed by 0.03s and 0.3s , respectively. The two other more robust techniques reached 90° even with the largest of these delays, although more time (and endurance) was needed. However, these two methods also differed with respect to maximum torque and endurance, and none was preferable in both these aspects, being dependent on the swinger goals and abilities.