Testing and evaluation of athlete’s performance skills is essential in the field of strength and
conditioning. On day one of meeting with any athlete a strength and conditioning coach needs a baseline assessment to determine the physical-motor characteristics of the athlete. Once the coach has this information, they can objectively set up a training program (D'Isanto, 2019). The series of tests that Athlete Performance uses investigates the physical qualities of strength, power, and mobility for the purpose of verifying to the coaches that they can proceed with training and minimize injury.
At Athlete Performance we do a series of movement analysis and jump testing during our Movement Efficiency Test (MET) to observe the physical-motor characteristics of each athlete. We look at the characteristics of the squat, split squat, goodmorning, and hand release push- ups. The squat is a bilateral core movement that uses the stretch shortening cycle. This key movement in strength and conditioning tells us a lot about the mobility of the athlete and is key in programming to work both sides of the force- velocity curve. The split squat is a unilateral/compound movement that is used to increase lower limb strength and flexibility. The single leg good morning is also a unilateral exercise that utilizes the hip hinge which is how athletes produce maximum force during their sport. Hand release push up is the upper body test that also shows the coaches how strong the athlete's core is. These four exercises together make up the Athlete Performance movement analysis portion of the MET. By assessing these key components, we can see what imbalances exist in the athlete, which areas need improvement, and which the athlete already is experienced in performing.
The second component to the MET assessment is the jump testing series where the G-Flight
device measures jump height, ground contact time and reactive strength index. The G-flight is an affordable, and portable device that is used at all 3 locations. It has been found to be valid and reliable in the literature when compared to force plates, and jump mats (Schmarzo, 2017). This sport performance technology is used on Athlete Performance athletes for a
countermovement jump, non-countermovement jump, single leg jumps, and a RSI test. Jump testing is a way to objectively measure any bilateral asymmetries suspected to increase the risk of injury and have a negative effect on performance (McElveen, 2010). In addition, jumping requires motor coordination between upper and lower body segments, and the propulsive action of lower limbs during vertical jump evaluates explosive characteristics from sedentary individuals to elite athletes (Markovic, 2004). Therefore, this set of tests within the MET assessment is very effective due to the wide variety of athletes that are at Athlete Performance.