Resistance exercise is essential to improve or maintain muscle performance. Vibration training has been suggested as an alternative option for muscle conditioning, aiming especially at improving muscle strength and power. Several studies link the effects of vibration training to enhanced neuromuscular stimulation, measured by electromyography (EMG) and typically ascribed to involuntary reflex mechanisms. However, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear, limiting the use of vibration training. This paper proposes additional methods to analyze the mechanisms involved in vibration training. A dedicated measurement setup was realized to relate vibration parameters to muscle fatigue in the biceps brachii. Fatigue is estimated by EMG mean frequency and conduction velocity assessments as well as by maximum voluntary contraction (MVC) force measurements. A modified maximum likelihood algorithm is proposed for the conduction velocity estimation based on high-density EMG recording. Five volunteers performed four isometric contractions of 50 s at 80% MVC with no vibration (control) and with superimposed vibration at 20, 30, and 40 Hz. Fatigue was estimated from the decay of force, EMG mean frequency, and EMG conduction velocity. 30-Hz vibrations represented the most fatiguing stimulus. Our preliminary results also show a better correlation between force and conduction velocity decay than between force and mean frequency decay, indicating the former as a better EMG indicator of fatigue. The proposed methods provide important advancements for the analysis of vibration exercise and guidance towards the definition of optimal training protocols.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings on the 32nd Annual International Conference, Buenos Aires (Argentina), 1-4 September, 2010|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|