Feasibility of OpenPose markerless motion analysis in a real athletics competition

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Cronin, NJ
Walker, J
Tucker, CB
Nicholson, G
Cooke, M
Merlino, S
Bissas, A
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This study tested the performance of OpenPose on footage collected by two cameras at 200 Hz from a real-life competitive setting by comparing it with manually analyzed data in SIMI motion. The same take-off recording from the men's Long Jump finals at the 2017 World Athletics Championships was used for both approaches (markerless and manual) to reconstruct the 3D coordinates from each of the camera's 2D coordinates. Joint angle and Centre of Mass (COM) variables during the final step and take-off phase of the jump were determined. Coefficients of Multiple Determinations (CMD) for joint angle waveforms showed large variation between athletes with the knee angle values typically being higher (take-off leg: 0.727 ± 0.242; swing leg: 0.729 ± 0.190) than those for hip (take-off leg: 0.388 ± 0.193; swing leg: 0.370 ± 0.227) and ankle angle (take-off leg: 0.247 ± 0.172; swing leg: 0.155 ± 0.228). COM data also showed considerable variation between athletes and parameters, with position (0.600 ± 0.322) and projection angle (0.658 ± 0.273) waveforms generally showing better agreement than COM velocity (0.217 ± 0.241). Agreement for discrete data was generally poor with high random error for joint kinematics and COM parameters at take-off and an average ICC across variables of 0.17. The poor agreement statistics and a range of unrealistic values returned by the pose estimation underline that OpenPose is not suitable for in-competition performance analysis in events such as the long jump, something that manual analysis still achieves with high levels of accuracy and reliability.

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Frontiers in Sports and Active Living
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© 2024 Cronin, Walker, Tucker, Nicholson, Cooke, Merlino and Bissas. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
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Sports science and exercise
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Cronin, NJ; Walker, J; Tucker, CB; Nicholson, G; Cooke, M; Merlino, S; Bissas, A, Feasibility of OpenPose markerless motion analysis in a real athletics competition, Frontiers in Sports and Active Living, 2024, 5, pp. 1298003