Neural and muscular adjustments following repeated running sprints

Stéphane Perrey, Sébastien Racinais, Khaled Saimouaa, Olivier Girard

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    69 Citations (Scopus)


    This study aimed to reveal the neural and muscular adjustments following a repeated-sprint (RS) running exercise. Sixteen subjects performed a series of neuromuscular tests before, immediately after and 30 min (passive recovery) post-RS exercise (12 × 40 m sprints interspaced by 30 s of passive recovery). Sprint times significantly lengthened over repetitions (+17% from the first to the last sprint; P<0.05). After RS running exercise, maximal voluntary contraction torque of the plantar flexors (-11 ± 7.3%), muscle activation (twitch interpolation) (-2.7 ± 3.4%) and soleus maximal M-wave amplitude (-20 ± 17%) were significantly (P<0.05) reduced but returned close to baseline after 30 min. Both soleus EMG activity and maximal Hoffmann reflex normalized with respect to M-wave amplitude did not change during the whole experiment. From pre- to post-RS exercise, evoked twitch response was characterized by lower peak torque and maximal rate of torque development (-13 and -11%, respectively, P<0.05), but was not different from baseline after recovery. Peak tetanus at 20 and 80 Hz were 17 and 8% lower (P<0.05) in the fatigued state, respectively. Acute muscle fatigue induced by RS running exercise is mainly peripheral as the short-term (30 min) recovery pattern of plantar flexors contractile properties follows that of the voluntary force-generating capacity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1027-1036
    Number of pages10
    JournalEuropean Journal of Applied Physiology
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2010


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