Motor Control

Document Type



Constraining the time available to pre-plan a change of direction (COD) manoeuvre affects the mechanics of both the penultimate foot contact (PFC) and the COD steps. Understanding the effect of anticipation on the PFC stance phase is important to elucidate the temporal sequence of modifications to gait in preparation for the cut. We investigated the temporal localisation within the PFC of two major preparatory requirements for COD, braking and control of body orientation, by comparing the PFC kinematics of planned and reactive maximal 90° COD manoeuvres in 62 male athletes. Planned manoeuvres were associated with greater deceleration and lower-limb joint flexion in early stance, and with greater body reorientation in later stance. Our findings thus suggest that these components may be prioritised at different temporal periods within the penultimate step.