Fulton, Clifton D.
M.S. (Master of Science)
Department of Physical Education
Base running (Baseball)
The purpose of this study was to determine whether there is a difference in time between the head-first and feet-first slides as used in baseball. The study also attempted to determine whether there is a relationship between the total elapsed time and actual sliding distance for both slides. Twenty Milton College baseball players were tested on both the head-first and feet-first slides. Each subject performed a sprint and slide for three trials over a distance of eighty-two feet. Two chronometers, one measuring the time required to run from a point eight feet from second base to a point fifteen feet from third base, and the other measuring elapsed time to the edge of third base, were used during the experiment. The test was administered to only two groups of five subjects each at one time. The first group of five performed the head-first slide. After the first group was completed the second group performed the feet-first slide. After completion of this arrangement the first group performed the feet-first slide. After the first group was finished the second group performed the head-first slide. Groups three and four followed the same procedure as groups one and two. After testing had been concluded each subject was individually asked which slide he preferred and used. From this questioning two groups of ten subjects each were formed and used for preferred versus non-preferred group analysis. The best total elapsed time and associated sliding distance, for each subject, for each slide, was recorded for statistical analysis. The mean total elapsed time for all subjects for the headfirst slide was 3.71 seconds. The mean total elapsed time for the feet-first slide was 3.72 seconds. Therefore, the head-first slide was slightly faster than the feet-first slide. However, the t̲ value for paired observations indicated no significant difference between the means at the .05 level of significance. Even though the head-first slide was shorter in terms of total elapsed time it had a one foot greater sliding distance than the feet-first slide. When comparing the group preferring the head-first slide versus the group preferring the feet-first slide, it was found that both groups had an identical total elapsed time of 3.70 seconds. A Pearson product moment correlation coefficient of -.16, for the head-first preferred group, indicated a slight negative relationship between the total elapsed time and sliding distance. A Pearson product moment correlation coefficient of +.63, for the group preferring the feet-first slide, indicated a positive relationship between the total elapsed time and sliding distance. When performing the head-first slide, the group preferring this slide had a mean total elapsed time of .028 seconds less than the group preferring the feet-first slide. However, the t̲ value did not indicate a significant difference between the means at the .05 level of significance. When performing the feet-first slide, the group preferring this slide had a mean total elapsed time of .041 seconds less than the group preferring the head-first slide. The t̲ value did not indicate a significant difference between the means at the .05 level of significance. In every comparison the head-first sliding distance mean was four to twelve inches greater than the mean sliding distance for the feet-first slide. However, even though the head-first slide was longer it either was equal to or had a shorter total elapsed time than the feet-first slide in each of the comparisons made.
Birk, Thomas J., "A comparison between the head-first slide and the feet-first slide with respect to time and distance" (1976). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 138.
iv, 34 pages
Northern Illinois University
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