Isokinetics and Exercise Science - Volume 25, issue 3
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Isokinetics and Exercise Science (IES) is an international journal devoted to the study of theoretical and applied aspects of human muscle performance. Since isokinetic dynamometry constitutes the major tool in this area, the journal takes a particular interest in exploring the considerable potential of this technology.
Isokinetics and Exercise Science publishes studies associated with the methodology of muscle performance especially with respect to the issues of reproducibility and validity of testing, description of normal and pathological mechanical parameters which are derivable from muscle testing, applications in basic research topics such as motor learning paradigms and electromyography. The journal also publishes studies on applications in clinical settings and technical aspects of the various measurement systems employed in human muscle performance research.
Isokinetics and Exercise Science welcomes submissions in the form of research papers, reviews, case studies and technical reports from professionals in the fields of sports medicine, orthopaedic and neurological rehabilitation and exercise physiology.
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To investigate the effects of strengthening, neuromuscular and lumbopelvic stabilization exercises on strength, symptoms and physical function in men with mild knee osteoarthritis. METHODS: A total of 17 men with mild knee osteoarthritis participated in this study. Subjects underwent clinical and radiographic examinations and isokinetic strength evaluations and completed the Western Ontario & McMaster Universities questionnaire before and after an intervention program comprising strengthening, neuromuscular and lumbopelvic stabilization exercises twice per week for eight weeks. RESULTS: After the intervention program, subjects exhibited significant reductions in pain (P= 0.009), improvements in physical function…(P= 0.015) and quadriceps and hip abductor strength. There was no change in hamstring and hip adductor strength or stiffness after the intervention program. CONCLUSIONS: An eight-week supervised exercise therapy program comprising strengthening, neuromuscular and lumbopelvic stabilization exercises may help reduce muscle weakness, pain and disability in men with early knee osteoarthritis.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: There continues to be ongoing debates among researchers as to the positive or negative effects of short-term wearing of high heeled shoes (HH) on ankle muscles. OBJECTIVE: To investigate ankle functions among people wearing low-, mid-, and high-heel shoes as well as the effects different heel measurement heights have among the groups. METHODS: Seventy-eight female college students who habitually wore heeled shoes at various heights from 2.71 to 10.15 cm for approximately one academic year (40.10 ± 10.13 weeks) took part in this study. Participants were grouped according to their heel…heights: low-, mid- and high-heels. Body composition was measured as well as the isokinetic strength of ankle muscles at three different heights: 0 cm, 5 cm and 10 cm, relating to the distance between the standard foot attachment and the foot supporting plate. The isokinetic strength (in Nm) of the ankle dorsiflexor (DF), plantarflexor (PF), evertor (EV), and invertor (IV) muscle groups was recorded for the dominant and non-dominant sides. The total strength of ankle muscles (TSAM), which is the sum of the peak moment of all 4 muscle groups was calculated for both sides for all groups. RESULTS: The wearing of HH shoes significantly enhanced the isokinetic strength of all ankle muscles when measured at a height of 0 cm, and some ankle muscles (PF and EV) when measured at a height of 5 cm. However, these effects decreased as the measurement height increased for DF, PF, EV and IV (P< 0.05) for both sides. Moreover, there were no significant differences between high- and low-heels groups at the measurement height of 10 cm. The TSAM for both sides also showed no significant differences between groups when measuring at 10 cm. CONCLUSIONS: Wearing of HH shoes for one year may contribute to enhancing the isokinetic strength of ankle muscles when wearing flat or mid-heeled shoes. However, the positive effects that were measured in lower height conditions (0 cm and 5 cm) disappeared when measured using higher heights, indicating that wearing HH shoes yields no benefits for building ankle muscle strength.
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effect of kinesiotaping therapy on the pain and discomfort associated with ankle sprains in Korean university students using a pretest-posttest experimental design with a non-equivalent control group. METHOD: Kinesiotaping was applied once and maintained for three consecutive days (N = 26). Control subjects had a salicylic acid component medicine patch applied once a day, for three consecutive days (N = 27). Pain and discomfort before application and at 10 minutes, 24 hours and 48 hours after application were measured. RESULTS: There was a significant between-group difference at each time…point after application (p < 0.001), with lower pain and discomfort scores in the kinesiotaping group. CONCLUSIONS: Kinesiotaping may be easily applied to rapidly improve the short-term pain and discomfort associated with ankle sprains.
Keywords: Acute ankle sprain, discomfort, kinesiotaping therapy, pain, university students
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Range of Motion (ROM) and passive torque have been widely used to evaluate flexibility stretching protocols, but little attention has been given to the reliability of these measurements. OBJECTIVE: To verify the interday reliability of isokinetic dynamometer for assessing ROM measures based on discomfort perception (initial and maximum), static and dynamic measures of passive torque during a leg extension movement on a young adult sample. METHODS: Twenty students (13 men; 7 women) aged between 18 and 30 years attended the laboratory to perform the test and retest with 2-7 days interval. The…evaluations included: Initial Discomfort Angle (IDA), Passive dynamic torque (Stiffness), Passive static torque (Viscoelastic Stress Relaxation-VSR) and Maximal Discomfort Angle (MDA). Reliability was tested by the Intraclass Correlation Coefficient (ICC), one-sample t-test and Bland-Altman charts. RESULTS: Stiffness (ICC = 0.93), IDA (ICC = 0.90) and MDA (ICC = 0.87) showed excellent reliability values, while VSR had moderate ones (ICC = 0.59). Bland-Altman plots indicated bias close or equal to zero. The one-sample t-test for all measures reinforced the absence of a systematic error. CONCLUSIONS: Dynamic and static stiffness measures and ROM based on the subject's discomfort perception may be applied to relevant clinical issues.
Keywords: Reproducibility of results, muscle stretching exercises, joint flexibility
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The squat exercise is frequently used to develop muscle strength of the lower back, hip, and knee regions to improve physical performance. OBJECTIVE: To investigate the effects of squat exercises involving three types of isometric hip contractions and two types of wall conditions on the thickness of abdominal muscles in college athletes. METHODS: Twenty-seven college athletes, 17 men and 10 women, took part in the study. Subjects performed the standard squat without hip contraction, the isometric hip adduction squat, and the isometric hip abduction squat with and without using a wall. Abdominal…thickness was measured with an ultrasound and presented as muscle thickness ratio. RESULTS: The transversus abdominis (TrA) and internal oblique (IO) thickness ratio was significantly greater during the isometric hip adduction squat exercise compared to the standard and isometric hip abduction squat exercises. The TrA and IO thickness ratio in the isometric hip abduction squat exercise was significantly higher than that in the standard squat exercise. The external oblique (EO) thickness ratio was significantly higher in the squat exercise without wall compared to the squat exercise with wall. CONCLUSIONS: Isometric hip adduction squat exercise may be an effective method for increasing the TrA and IO thickness ratio while performing the squat exercise without wall may help increase the EO thickness ratio.
Keywords: Isometric hip contraction, squat exercises, thickness of abdominal muscles
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Push-up plus exercise is applied to scapular winging to selectively activate serratus anterior (SA). OBJECTIVES: To compare muscle activity, muscle activity ratios, and the degrees of rotation of the thoracic and lumbar spine during a modified push-up plus exercise. METHODS: In total, 20 subjects with scapular winging participated. Subjects performed the knee push-up plus with ipsilateral leg extension (KPP-ILE) and the standard push-up plus with ipsilateral leg extension (SPP-ILE) exercises. During the SPP-ILE and KPP-ILE, SA, pectoralis major (PM), ipsilateral external oblique (ipsiEO), and contralateral external oblique (contEO) muscle activities, the SA/PM…and ipsiEO/contEO ratios were assessed and the degree of rotation of the thoracic and lumbar spine were assessed. RESULTS: Muscle activities of SA, PM, ipsiEO, contEO, and SA/PM ratio were significantly higher during SPP-ILE than KPP-ILE. The ipsiEO/contEO ratio decreased more significantly during SPP-ILE versus KPP-ILE. Thoracic and lumbar rotation values were significantly lower in SPP-ILE. CONCLUSIONS: The SPP-ILE may be a useful exercise for subjects with scapular winging because of the increased SA/PM ratio, the diminished compensatory rotation through increased scapular stabilization muscle activity and co-contraction of the abdominal trunk-stabilizing muscles.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Plank exercise is one of the most popular methods of exercise for strengthening the trunk muscles. However, many individuals might have some difficulty performing this exercise. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to identify trunk muscle activation with postural changes and the use of dynamic cushion during a traditional plank exercise in order to propose a set of exercise levels according to exercise performance ability. METHODS: Seven participants were asked to perform the traditional plank exercise (TPE), a modified plank exercise (MPE), an unstable traditional plank exercise (UTPE), and an unstable modified plank exercise…(UMPE). The UTPE and UMPE use a dynamic cushion to simulate an unstable surface. Surface EMG of the ractus abdominis (RA), external oblique (EO) and erector spinae (ES) was recorded while participants were engaged in these exercises. The plank exercises were performed for ten seconds with a ten-minute break between each posture. RESULTS: Comparing the measurement results from the four postures, significant differences were observed in the RA and EO (p < 0.05) which were found to be significantly different during the UTPE than during the MPE and UMPE (p < 0.05), while TPE showed a significant difference only in the left EO muscle activation (p < 0.05). In terms of the right RA and the left EO, a significant difference was observed only with respect to MPE (p < 0.05). CONCLUSION: The results of this study may be used as a basis to arrange the order of exercise, based on the level of muscle activation appropriate for the participant’s exercising ability. Individuals who have difficulty performing the TPE, may first perform the MPE and the UMPE.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Calisthenics was a term used to define a generic set of body weight exercises. Such term is now used to define a world wide spread discipline based on body weight and gymnastics exercises. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to administer a calisthenics training protocol and evaluate its effects on posture, strength and body composition in untrained individuals. METHODS: Twenty-eight male participants (24.2 ± 4.2 years; 67.0 ± 8.3 Kg; 173.3 ± 5.2 cm) were divided into two groups, a Calisthenics based intervention group (SG)…and a control group (CG). The SG exercised for 8 weeks. Each participant underwent a body composition analysis, a postural assessment, a handgrip test, a push-up and a pull-up test. Each participant was tested at baseline and post intervention. RESULTS: The SG improved their posture (with open eyes p < 0.001 and with closed eyes p < 0.05), their strength (push-up test p < 0.01 with a 16.4% increase and pull up test p < 0.0001 with a 39.2% increase) and their body composition (Fat mass 14.8 ± 5.1 vs. 11.4 ± 5.9, p < 0.01). No difference was shown for the handgrip test. No significant differences were displayed in any variable of the CG between pre and post measures. CONCLUSIONS: Calisthenics training is a feasible and effective training solution to improve posture, strength and body composition without the use any major training equipment.