Profiling the physical demands of mounted police during a major event

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Aim: To profile the physical demands of a mounted police unit during a 10-hour shift.

Design: Prospective cohort study.

Method: Data were collected from 8 mounted police officers (males=2) during 10-hour shift at Mardi Gras (reportedly one of the most physically demanding shifts), in full patrol gear, weighing on average, 6.5kg. At the beginning of their shift, officers were fitted with Polar Team Pro units to monitor heart rate (HR) and HR variability (HRV) as well as components of distance traversed and speed. Ethics approval was provided by the Bond University Human Research Ethics Committee #BS02126.

Results: The officers’ travelled on average 17.6±2.4km on horseback, with average speeds of 1.8±0.3km/h and mean maximum speed of 20.1±11.6km/h. There were on average 4.8±8.0 moments of accelerations of more than 2.8m/s2 and 3.8±6.8 decelerations of more than -3.0m/s2. Throughout the shift, the mean HR was 96.3±11.7bpm and HRmax 161.9±11.7bpm. Officers spent on average 26.9±39.3min at HR70-80%,
9.2+9.0min at HR80-90%, and 2.5±2.7min at HR90-100%. The average HRV (RMSSD) was 20.0±5.9ms, with a range of 9-30ms.

Conclusion: The profile of this 10-hour shift highlighted the unique physical demands of mounted police. Time, distance, and speed on horseback are noteworthy, as well as number of accelerations and decelerations.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 7 Oct 2023
EventAustralian Physiotherapy Association: INGNITE Physiotherapy Conference 2023 - Brisbane Convention Centre, Brisbane, Australia
Duration: 5 Oct 20237 Oct 2023


ConferenceAustralian Physiotherapy Association
Abbreviated titleINGNITE 2023
OtherWe have the chance to take physiotherapy to new levels and ignite the future of the profession through innovation and collaboration. Barriers can be broken down and communities connected.

Physiotherapists can look to the future and commit to excellence and equality, for themselves and the profession. Challenges can be made and met, passions ignited for what is possible.

We can evolve and explore the possibilities and make sure that physiotherapy comes out better than ever before.

By igniting your imagination, great things can be achieved!
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