Advanced materials and sporting performance
Author: Jenkins, Mike
Source: Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, Volume 27, Number 1, March 2002 , pp. 61-66(6)
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Abstract:Athletic performance appears to be continually improving, and the upward trends can be observed in a wide range of sports from sprinting to golf. There are a range of factors that contribute to these observed increases. Some, such as improved levels of fitness and technique, are related to the human element of competition. Others are associated with sports equipment design and the materials used in its construction. In field athletics, for example, different factors have contributed to improvements in performance in different disciplines: events such as the hammer are dominated by the human element, whereas the pole vault is strongly affected by materials technology. Enhancement of performance through materials technology is not without its critics, particularly in sports such as golf and tennis. Governing bodies are becoming increasingly proactive in the specification of detailed regulations for the design and construction of sports equipment. However advances in materials technology can also make sport more enjoyable for novice to intermediate athletes, resulting in increased participation, as well as increased health and wealth for society as a whole.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: March 2002