This study examined potential differences between maximally cushioned (MAX) shoes and standard cushioned (STND) shoes during countermovement vertical jump (CMVJ) performance. Twenty-one males (23 y; 86.5[15.4] kg; 179.8[6.3] cm) completed eight jumps each in MAX and STND shoes while three-dimensional kinematic and kinetic data were collected. Paired-samples t-tests (α = 0.05) and Cohen’s d effect sizes (ES) were used to compare the following variables: vertical jump displacement, jump time, hip, knee and ankle joint angles at the start of the countermovement, the end of the unloading phase, the end of the eccentric phase, and at takeoff, peak joint power, and the joint contributions to total lower extremity work during the eccentric and concentric phases. The ankle was more dorsiflexed at the end of the countermovement in the MAX shoe (p = 0.002; ES = 0.55) but greater plantarflexion occurred in the STND shoes at takeoff (p = 0.028; ES = 0.56). No other differences were observed. The result of this study suggests that unique ankle joint angular positioning may be employed when wearing MAX versus STND shoes. Since the unique ankle joint positioning did not alter jump performance, potential MAX footwear users might not need to consider the potential for altered CMVJ performance when determining whether to adopt MAX footwear.
- Maximal shoes
- countermovement vertical jump
- standard shoes