Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Dunn, J. Hubert

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Physical Education




The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of four variations of lateral spacing of the starting blocks upon the time required for a runner to start and sprint over distances of 10 and 50 meters. The subjects were 25 undergraduate students enrolled at Northern Illinois University during the spring semester of 1980. They were from 18 to 24 years of age. Their experience in the sprint start in track ranged from 0 to 10 years. An electrical timing system capable of timing to the nearest millisecond was employed to time the runners at the prescribed distances. Subjects reported to five practice and five testing sessions. During the five testing sessions, each subject performed one start and subsequent 50-meter sprint from each of the four randomized lateral block settings of 10.1, 15.2, 20.3, and 25.4 cm. Upon completion of the study, the data were subjected to statistical analysis through a multivariate analysis of variance. Results indicated that the lateral block settings did not significantly affect sprint performance at either the 10- or 50-meter distance. Furthermore, sprint performance did not significantly differ on a day-to-day basis throughout the study. The investigator concluded that sprint performance was not effected by variations in lateral spacing of the feet in the starting position.


Includes bibliographical references.


ix, 77 pages




Northern Illinois University

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