Kinematics of preferred and non-preferred handballing in Australian football Academic Article uri icon


  • In Australian football (AF), handballing proficiently with both the preferred and non-preferred arm is important at elite levels; yet, little information is available for handballing on the non-preferred arm. This study compared preferred and non-preferred arm handballing techniques. Optotrak Certus (100 Hz) collected three-dimensional data for 19 elite AF players performing handballs with the preferred and non-preferred arms. Position data, range of motion (ROM), and linear and angular velocities were collected and compared between preferred and non-preferred arms using dependent t-tests. The preferred arm exhibited significantly greater forearm and humerus ROM and angular velocity and significantly greater shoulder angular velocity at ball contact compared to the non-preferred arm. In addition, the preferred arm produced a significantly greater range of lateral bend and maximum lower-trunk speed, maximum strike-side hip speed and hand speed at ball contact than the non-preferred arm. The non-preferred arm exhibited a significantly greater shoulder angle and lower- and upper-trunk orientation angle, but significantly lower support-elbow angle, trunk ROM, and trunk rotation velocity compared to the preferred arm. Reduced ROM and angular velocities found in non-preferred arm handballs indicates a reduction in the degrees of freedom and a less developed skill. Findings have implication for development of handballing on the non-preferred arm.

publication date

  • 2015