Stroke timing analysis
Time representative curves
This graph is designed for the analysis of stoke timing. The average force and power curves are shown plotted on a time scale that shows the typical (averaged) stroke timing.
[example graph coming soon]
The left-stroke catch of reference paddler (usually the front seat paddler) is set to t=0 and the power and force curves of the other athletes in the boat are shown in relation to this stroke. The first (left most) curve represents the left stroke, and the second (right most) indicates the right stroke.
This graph highlights:
- Stroke timing – The relative catch timing of each athlete. In the above graph, it can be seen that athlete #2 is early on the catch for both the left and right stroke.
- Position of peak forces and power – Insight into the level of synchronisation of peak power and force. In the graph above, Athlete #2 has good peak power timing on the right stroke, but is earlier than athlete #1 on the left stroke.
- Relative stroke duration – Do all athletes have the same stroke time? Athlete #2 is applying power over the stroke for a longer period of time than Athlete #1. This means that at times Athlete #2 is solely propelling the boat.
- Exit timing – The relative timing that the paddle exits the water. Do the strokes end at the same time? Is there one athlete still applying power? In the example graph above, there is an exit timing difference on the right stroke exit. Athlete #2 is still applying power whist Athlete #1 is setting up for the left stroke.
Based on the results of this analysis, the team can identify aspects of each person's stroke that require development. Focus can be made on particular parts of the stroke (e.g. Focus on advancing left catch and left exit). Different team boat combinations or seating configurations can be tested to find which one result in more ideal behavior. The boat can perform at its best if each paddler is working in time, and together with the rest of the team.
Force and power based timing analysis can not be carried out by visual inspection, even with the aid of high speed video. There have been cases where athletes appeared to have perfect stroke timing, indicated by synchronized blade entry, but the timing of the applied force and power was significantly different. Once addressed, the team experienced real performance improvements.