Author

Aaron Runner

Date of Award

5-2014

Level of Access

Campus-Only Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Kinesiology and Physical Education

Advisor

Stephen Butterfield

Second Committee Member

Robert Lehnhard

Third Committee Member

Shihfen Tu

Abstract

Many tests have been used to predict speed in athletes across various sports. However, studies examining the tests most strongly associated with on- ice speed in ice hockey players are few and yield varying results. The purpose of this study was to examine the associations between on-ice speed and selected performance measures in male collegiate ice hockey players. It was hypothesized that a horizontal test would be a better predictor of linear speed than a vertical measure. Performances of 40 male college hockey players were included in this study. Off-ice independent variables (IV) included the Vertical Jump (VJ), Standing Broad Jump (SBJ), 40-Yard Dash (40YD), and Maximal Back Squat (1RMBS). On-ice dependent variables (DV) included the Forward 90-ft Acceleration Test (AF), Backward 90-ft Acceleration Test (AB), and the Flying 50-ft Top Speed Test (F50). Pearson correlation coefficients were used to compare the strength of association between each selected off-ice performance measure and the on-ice performance measures. Three multiple regression equations were used to compare the weighted strengths of association between the set of IV’s and each DV. A preliminary analysis examined the correlation between the 4 IV’s (VJ, SBJ, 40YD, 1RMBS) and the 3 DV’s (AF, AB, F50). The findings indicated that VJ and 40YD were consistently related to all three DV’s, while SBJ and 1RMBS had marginally significant associations with AF. The unique effect of each IV on each DV was examined through 3 multiple regression equations. Only VJ had a significant effect on each outcome variable [AF: b= - .029, t(35)= -2.349, p=.025; AB: b= -.055, t(35)= -2.412, p=.021; F50: b= -.029, t(35)= -2.68, p=.011]. Given the results of the Pearson coefficient and the 3 multiple regression equations, it appears VJ is the best predictor of linear speed in male collegiate ice hockey players. Strength and conditioning coaches should consider incorporating more explosive vertical movements into training programs.

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