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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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.

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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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