Turn Performance Variation in European Elite Short-Course Swimmers.

Cuenca-Fernández, Francisco; Ruiz-Navarro, Jesús; Polach, Marek; Arellano, Raúl; Born, Dennis (2022). Turn Performance Variation in European Elite Short-Course Swimmers. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(9), p. 5033. MDPI 10.3390/ijerph19095033

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Turn performances are important success factors for short-course races, and more consistent turn times may distinguish between higher and lower-ranked swimmers. Therefore, this study aimed to determine coefficients of variation (CV) and performance progressions (∆%) of turn performances. The eight finalists and eight fastest swimmers from the heats that did not qualify for the semi-finals, i.e., from 17th to 24th place, of the 100, 200, 400, and 800 (females only)/1500 m (males only) freestyle events at the 2019 European Short Course Championships were included, resulting in a total of 64 male (finalists: age: 22.3 ± 2.6, FINA points: 914 ± 31 vs. heats: age: 21.5 ± 3.1, FINA points: 838 ± 74.9) and 64 female swimmers (finalists: age: 22.9 ± 4.8, FINA points: 904 ± 24.5 vs. heats: age: 20.1 ± 3.6, FINA points: 800 ± 48). A linear mixed model was used to compare inter- and intra-individual performance variation. Interactions between CVs, ∆%, and mean values were analyzed using a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). The results showed impaired turn performances as the races progressed. Finalists showed faster turn section times than the eight fastest non-qualified swimmers from the heats (p < 0.001). Additionally, turn section times were faster for short-, i.e., 100 and 200 m, than middle- and long-distance races, i.e., 400 to 1500 m races (p < 0.001). Regarding variation in turn performance, finalists showed lower CVs and ∆% for all turn section times (0.74% and 1.49%) compared to non-qualified swimmers (0.91% and 1.90%, respectively). Similarly, long-distance events, i.e., 800/1500 m, showed lower mean CVs and higher mean ∆% (0.69% and 1.93%) than short-distance, i.e., 100 m events (0.93% and 1.39%, respectively). Regarding turn sections, the largest CV and ∆% were found 5 m before wall contact (0.70% and 1.45%) with lower CV and more consistent turn section times 5 m after wall contact (0.42% and 0.54%). Non-qualified swimmers should aim to match the superior turn performances and faster times of finalists in all turn sections. Both finalists and non-qualified swimmers should pay particular attention to maintaining high velocities when approaching the wall as the race progresses.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


Swiss Federal Institute of Sports Magglingen SFISM > EHSM - Leistungssport > Trainingswissenschaft


Cuenca-Fernández, Francisco;
Ruiz-Navarro, Jesús;
Polach, Marek;
Arellano, Raúl and
Born, Dennis0000-0002-1058-4367








Sabina Wolfensberger

Date Deposited:

11 Jul 2023 10:47

Last Modified:

11 Jul 2023 10:47

Publisher DOI:


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Uncontrolled Keywords:

Race analysis Swimming Competition analysis Freestyle Performance Trainingswissenschaft





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