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The purpose of the study was to investigate the effects of fatigue on lower extremity joint kinematics, and kinetics during repetitive drop jumps. Twelve recreationally active males (n = 6) and females (n = 6) (nine used for analysis) performed repetitive drop jumps until they could no longer reach 80% of their initial drop jump height. Kinematic and kinetic variables were assessed during the impact phase (100 ms) of all jumps. Fatigued landings were performed with increased knee extension, and ankle plantar flexion at initial contact, as well as increased ankle range of motion during the impact phase. Fatigue also resulted in increased peak ankle power absorption and increased energy absorption at the ankle. This was accompanied by an approximately equal reduction in energy absorption at the knee. While the knee extensors were the muscle group primarily responsible for absorbing the impact, individuals compensated for increased knee extension when fatigued by an increased use of the ankle plantar flexors to help absorb the forces during impact. Thus, as fatigue set in and individuals landed with more extended lower extremities, they adopted a landing strategy that shifted a greater burden to the ankle for absorbing the kinetic energy of the impact.

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This document was originally published by Human Kinetics in Journal of Applied Biomechanics. Copyright restrictions may apply.