Fresh from the Journal of Experimental Biology (JEB), here is an interesting Biology article:
Katja Söhnel, Christian Rode, Marc H. E. de Lussanet, Heiko Wagner, Martin S. Fischer, and Emanuel Andrada
A considerable body of work has examined the dynamics of different dog gaits, but there are no studies that have focused on limb dynamics in jumping. Jumping is an essential part of dog agility, a dog sport in which handlers direct their dogs through an obstacle course in a limited time. We hypothesized that limb parameters like limb length and stiffness indicate the skill level of dogs. We analyzed global limb parameters in jumping for 10 advanced and 10 beginner dogs. In experiments, we collected 3D kinematics and ground reaction forces during dog jumping at high forward speeds. Our results revealed general strategies of limb control in jumping and highlighted differences between advanced and beginner dogs. In take-off, the spatially leading forelimb was 75% (P<0.001) stiffer than the trailing forelimb. In landing, the trailing forelimb was 14% stiff... Read more at the Journal of Experimental Biology Blog.
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