Muscle activation patterns in the Nordic hamstring exercise: Impact of prior strain injury

Bourne, M.N., Opar, D.A., Williams, M.D., Al Najjar, A., & Shield, A. (2016) Muscle activation patterns in the Nordic hamstring exercise: Impact of prior strain injury. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 26(6), pp. 666-674.

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Abstract

This study aimed to determine:

1) the spatial patterns of hamstring activation during the Nordic hamstring exercise (NHE);

2) whether previously injured hamstrings display activation deficits during the NHE, and;

3) whether previously injured hamstrings exhibit altered cross-sectional area.

Ten healthy, recreationally active males with a history of unilateral hamstring strain injury underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of their thighs before and after 6 sets of 10 repetitions of the NHE. Transverse (T2) relaxation times of all hamstring muscles (biceps femoris long head, (BFlh); biceps femoris short head (BFsh); semitendinosus (ST); semimembranosus (SM)), were measured at rest and immediately after the NHE and cross-sectional area (CSA) was measured at rest. For the uninjured limb, the ST’s percentage increase in T2 with exercise was 16.8, 15.8 and 20.2% greater than the increases exhibited by the BFlh, BFsh and SM, respectively (p<0.002 for all). Previously injured hamstring muscles (n=10) displayed significantly smaller increases in T2 post-exercise than the homonymous muscles in the uninjured contralateral limb (mean difference -7.2%, p=0.001). No muscles displayed significant between limb differences in CSA. During the NHE, the ST is preferentially activated and previously injured hamstring muscles display chronic activation deficits compared to uninjured contralateral muscles.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 92325
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1111/sms.12494
ISSN: 0905-7188
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Copyright Owner: 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Deposited On: 27 Jan 2016 04:25
Last Modified: 20 May 2016 05:09

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