Electronic Theses and Dissertations


Open Access Thesis




Sled-pulling is a commonly implemented form of training for various sports. However, few studies have used sled-pulling as a means of acutely enhancing sprintrunning performances. The purpose of this study was to investigate how various sledpulling resistance loads (95% and 110% of body mass) effect subsequent, unloaded, sprint-running performances, possibly with aid from the effect known as Post-Activation Potentiation (PAP). PAP is a physiological phenomenon which increases the rate of force development of skeletal muscle which may result in the enhancement of power (speed-strength) dominant activities such as sprint-running and jumping.

Participants were a mix of males (n = 11; age 23.3 ± 1.8 years) and females (n = 4; age = 23.0 ± 3.2 years) who were either recreationally trained, division I collegiate athletes, or strength and conditioning coaches, all of whom regularly employed sprintrunning as part of their normal training program. The participants of this study underwent 2 experimental sled-pulling conditions (95% and 110% of body mass, respectively) as well as a third, unresisted, testing day which acted as the control. Each session was performed on a seperate day. On each experimental day, the participants ran timed, unresisted, 30-meter sprint-runs both before (pre-testing) and after (post-testing) the implementation of the sled-pulling condition. The uinresisted (control) condition consisted of two unresisted 30-meter sprint runs. The first of these sprints acted as the pre-test and the second sprint acted as the post-test. All unresisted sprints were electronically timed at the 10-, 20-, and 30-meter split marks as well as through the duration of the sprint.

A repeated-measures, pre-experimental design was used and the order in which the testing sessions were performed was randomized. Descriptive statistics (mean ± SD) were calculated for all performance variables. A 2X3 factorial MANOVA (time x pulling condition) was used to determine the effect of sled-pulling on sprint performance. Paired samples t-tests with Bonferronni adjustment were used as post hoc analysis when appropriate. The level of significance was set at p

The results of the 2x3 repeated measures MANOVA indicated that there were no significant interactions (F(6,9)=0.31, p=0.92) therefore main effects were analyzed. There was no significant load effect (F(6,9)=1.15, p=0.41) indicating that the loading strategy had no effect on sprint performance. There was a significant time effect (F(3,12)=5.7, p=0.012). The post hoc analysis indicated that the post-testing sprint trial (regardless of loading strategy) was significantly slower than the pre-testing trial for first (F(1)=5.5, p=0.034) and second splits (F(1)=9.4, p=0.008). There was no difference between the pre- and post-testing trials for third split (F(1)=0.71, p=0.41).

In conclusion, the heavy sled-pulling loads implemented in this study did not acutely enhance subsequent sprint-running performances. Furthermore, future studies implementing sled-pulling as a means of enhancing subsequent unresisted sprint-running performances can be directed at a wide variety of variables due to the limited amount of research that has been conducted in this area of sprint training.

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


School of Health, Physical Education, and Leisure Services


Division of Physical Education

First Advisor

Robin Lund, Chair

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (vii, 71 pages)



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