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Misuse of "power" and other mechanical terms in sport and exercise science research

Winter, Edward M.; Abt, Grant; Brookes, F. B. Carl; Challis, John H.; Fowler, Neil E.; Knudson, Duane V.; Knuttgen, Howard G.; Kraemer, William J.; Lane, Andrew M.; Van Mechelen, Willem; Morton, R. Hugh; Newton, Robert U.; Williams, Clyde; Winter, Edward; Yeadon, M. R.


Edward M. Winter

F. B. Carl Brookes

John H. Challis

Neil E. Fowler

Duane V. Knudson

Howard G. Knuttgen

William J. Kraemer

Andrew M. Lane

Willem Van Mechelen

R. Hugh Morton

Robert U. Newton

Clyde Williams

Edward Winter

M. R. Yeadon


© 2015 National Strength and Conditioning Association. Despite the Système International d'Unitès (SI) that was published in 1960, there continues to be widespread misuse of the terms and nomenclature of mechanics in descriptions of exercise performance. Misuse applies principally to failure to distinguish between mass and weight, velocity and speed, and especially the terms "work" and "power." These terms are incorrectly applied across the spectrum from high-intensity short-duration to long-duration endurance exercise. This review identifies these misapplications and proposes solutions. Solutions include adoption of the term "intensity" in descriptions and categorizations of challenge imposed on an individual as they perform exercise, followed by correct use of SI terms and units appropriate to the specific kind of exercise performed. Such adoption must occur by authors and reviewers of sport and exercise research reports to satisfy the principles and practices of science and for the field to advance.


Winter, E. M., Abt, G., Brookes, F. B. C., Challis, J. H., Fowler, N. E., Knudson, D. V., Knuttgen, H. G., Kraemer, W. J., Lane, A. M., Van Mechelen, W., Morton, R. H., Newton, R. U., Williams, C., Winter, E., & Yeadon, M. R. (2016). Misuse of "power" and other mechanical terms in sport and exercise science research. Journal of strength and conditioning research, 30(1), 292-300.

Journal Article Type Review
Publication Date Jan 1, 2016
Deposit Date Oct 5, 2015
Publicly Available Date Nov 23, 2017
Journal Journal of strength and conditioning research
Print ISSN 1064-8011
Publisher Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 30
Issue 1
Pages 292-300
Keywords Nomenclature, Mechanics constructs, SI
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Authors' accepted manuscript of article published in: Journal of strength and conditioning research, 2016, v.30, issue 1.
Contract Date Nov 23, 2017


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