The effects of isometric resistance training on stretch reflex induced tremor in the knee extensor muscles

Rade Durbaba, Angela Cassidy, Francesco Budini, Andrea MacAluso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examines the effect of 4 wk of high-intensity isometric resistance training on induced tremor in knee extensor muscles. Fourteen healthy volunteers were assigned to either the training group (n = 7) or the nontraining control group (n = 7). Induced tremor was assessed by measuring force fluctuations during anisometric contractions against spring loading, whose compliance was varied to allow for preferential activation of the short or long latency stretch reflex components. Effects of high-intensity isometric resistance training on induced tremor was assessed under two contraction conditions: relative force matching, where the relative level of activity was equal for both pre- and post-training sessions, set at 30% maximum voluntary contraction (MVC), and absolute force matching, where the level of activity was set to 30% pretrained MVC. The training group experienced a 26.5% increase in MVC in contrast to the 0.8% for the control group. For relative force-matching contractions, induced tremor amplitude and frequency did not change in either the training or control group. During absolute force-matching contractions, induced tremor amplitude was decreased by 37.5% and 31.6% for the short and long components, respectively, with no accompanying change in frequency, for the training group. No change in either measure was observed in the control group for absolute force-matching contractions. The results are consistent with high-intensity isometric resistance training induced neural changes leading to increased strength, coupled with realignment of stretch reflex automatic gain compensation to the new maximal force output. Also, previous reported reductions in anisometric tremor following strength training may partly be due to changed stretch reflex behavior.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1647-1656
JournalJournal of Applied Physiology
Volume114
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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