Dancer perceptions of quantified dance surface mechanical properties
Hopper, L. S., Alderson, J., Elliott, B., Ackland, T. R., & Fleming, P. R. (2011). Dancer perceptions of quantified dance surface mechanical properties. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part P: Journal of Sports Engineering and Technology, 225 (2), 65-73.
Dance floor surfaces are important environmental factors in dance activity and
have been suggested to be a factor in the aetiology of dance injury. Measurement of the injury risk associated with floor surfaces is difficult as the validity of the relationship between mechanical surface measures and human–surface interactions is unclear. Dancer perceptions of the mechanical properties of floor surfaces were investigated with reference to mechanical quantification measures. Student (n = 27) and professional (n = 27) dancers completed a questionnaire investigating their perceptions of the force reduction, vertical deformation, energy restitution and overall ratings of five sample dance floors. Dance floor mechanical properties were quantified using sport surface testing apparatus, the Advanced Artificial Athlete (AAA) (Metaalmaatwerk, Netherlands). Student and professional cohort perceptions were not significantly different for 18 of the 20 perception variables. Vertical deformation was the only mechanical variable to differ between cohort perceptions. Dancers demonstrated a preference for floors with greater force reduction magnitudes than specified by European sport surface standards, suggesting that bespoke floor standards for dance may be beneficial. Considerable discrepancies were found between particular dancer perceptions and related AAA outputs, highlighting the need for further investigation of valid mechanical tests that are used to represent human–surface interactions.
Peer-reviewed, dance, floor surfaces, human perceptions, surface testing
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