You have reached the Canadian website for Human Kinetics. Only orders shipping to a Canadian address can be completed on this website.

If you wish to continue click here, or contact the HK Canada office directly at 1-800-465-7301. If you wish to select the HK website for your region/location outside of Canada, click here

Sport Mechanics for Coaches-3rd Edition

Sport Mechanics for Coaches-3rd Edition

$26.98 CAD $53.95 CAD

Available As


    Most coaches are reluctant to study sport mechanics; from experience they equate it with boring texts loaded with formulas, calculations, and scientific terminology. That’s not the case with Sport Mechanics for Coaches. This updated third edition provides an introductory look at the mechanics of sport in a manner that’s understandable and usable for the novices in the field.

    Author Brendan Burkett—Paralympic gold medalist and world-record holder—pours his love of sport and his expertise as an award-winning engineer and biomechanics professor into this enhanced, revised, and reformatted text. Divided into three parts covering the fundamentals of sport mechanics, mechanical principles, and application of the knowledge to sport contexts, this text highlights real-life sporting achievements and the mechanics behind them. Various pedagogical aids including review questions and practical activities are featured, allowing students and coaches to gauge their understanding of key concepts chapter by chapter.

    Since the previous edition was published, technological advancements have expanded the coach’s and athlete’s toolbox. Sport Mechanics for Coaches includes nearly 150 illustrations and photos and all-new content to help readers understand and incorporate technology and state-of-the-art sport equipment to enhance training, identify errors in technique, and improve performance.

    Coaches, students, and athletes with a curiosity about how and why things work in the world of sport and a desire to improve performance will find Sport Mechanics for Coaches refreshingly easy to read, comprehend, and put into practice.

    Sport Mechanics for Coaches is a valuable component of the American Sport Education Program (ASEP), a leading provider of coaching education courses and resources to youth, high school, club sport, and college coaches. To learn more about ASEP curricula, courses, and resources, visit


    As a textbook or supplemental textbook for students in coaching, physical education, and kinesiology and for exercise physiology majors or minors taking introductory biomechanics or sport mechanics courses. As a reference for sport coaches—primarily high school coaches—who need to understand fundamental concepts of mechanics in order to improve their athletes’ performance. As a reference for physical education, physics, and kinesiology professionals working with student-athletes; and as a reference for athletes who need to understand mechanics and technology and maximize their potential.

    Table of Contents

    Part I Sport Mechanics Fundamentals

    Chapter 1 Making a Smart Move

    • Sport Mechanics
    • How Sport Mechanics for Coaches Can Help You
    • How Sport Mechanics for Coaches Is Organized

    Chapter 2 Starting With Basics

    • Basic Mechanical Principles
    • The Gravity of the Situation
    • May the Force Be With You

    Part II Mechanical Principles in Sport

    Chapter 3 Getting a Move On

    • How an Athlete Moves (Forces, Momentum, and Impulse)
    • What Happens When We Move (Work, Power, Energy, Rebound, and Friction)
    • How to Measure “Getting a Move On” in a Running Gait

    Chapter 4 Rocking and Rolling

    • How an Athlete Rotates (Angular Motion)
    • Mechanical Principles for Rotation (Lever Systems)
    • How an Athlete Initiates Rotation
    • What Happens When We Rotate (Velocity, Force, Inertia, and Momentum)
    • How to Measure Angular Velocity During Cycling

    Chapter 5 Don’t Be a Pushover

    • How an Athlete Can Avoid Being a Pushover (Stability)
    • Mechanical Principles for Stability
    • Factors That Determine Stability
    • How to Measure Center of Gravity and Line of Gravity

    Chapter 6 Going With the Flow

    • How an Athlete Goes With the Flow
    • Mechanical Principles for Moving Through a Fluid
    • Factors That Influence Moving Through Air and Water

    Part III Putting Your Knowledge of Sport Mechanics to Work

    Chapter 7 Analyzing Sport Skills

    • Step 1: Determine the Objectives of the Skill
    • Step 2: Note Any Special Characteristics of the Skill
    • Step 3: Study Top-Flight Performances of the Skill
    • Step 4: Divide the Skill Into Phases
    • Step 5: Divide Each Phase Into Key Objectives
    • Step 6: Understand the Mechanical Reasons Each Key Element is Performed as It Is

    Chapter 8 Identifying and Correcting Errors in Sport Skills

    • Step 1: Observe the Complete Skill
    • Step 2: Analyze Each Phase and Its Key Elements
    • Step 3: Use Your Knowledge of Sport Mechanics in Your Analysis
    • Step 4: Select Errors to Be Corrected
    • Step 5: Decide on Appropriate Methods for the Correction of Errors

    Chapter 9 Mechanics of Selected Sport Skills

    • Getting a Move On
    • Rocking and Rolling
    • Don’t Be a Pushover
    • Going With the Flow

    About the Author

    Brendan Burkett is an associate professor at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia. He received his undergraduate and master’s degrees in engineering and attained his doctorate in biomechanics from the Australian Institute of Sport. Burkett’s specializations are teaching biomechanics, sports coaching, and performance enhancement. His research revolves around technology developments in human health and performance. Burkett has written more than 30 peer-reviewed articles and 180 conference publications for journals in sport science, biomechanics, and coaching.

    As an international elite athlete, Burkett represented Australia for 13 years as a swimmer and was the Paralympic champion, world champion, world-record holder, and multiple medalist in the Commonwealth Games and Australian national championships. He served as the Australian team captain for the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games and as the flag bearer for the Opening Ceremonies of the Sydney 2000 Olympics. Burkett served as the national sport science coordinator for the Australian Paralympic team for the 2002 and 2006 World Championships and the 2004 Paralympic Games. He also worked with the Australian swimming team in preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

    He has received several awards, including the Australia Day Sporting Award, the Order of Australia Medal (OAM) as an ambassador for the Sydney Paralympic Games, and the Australian Sports Medal. Burkett was an invited scholar for the Erasmus Mundus Masters in Adapted Physical Activity in 2007 and was part of the Prime Minister’s 2020 Summit in the theme area of developing a long-term health strategy.