Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2016) 15, 142 - 147

Research article
The Acute Effect of Local Vibration As a Recovery Modality from Exercise-Induced Increased Muscle Stiffness
Hervé Pournot1, Jérémy Tindel1, Rodolphe Testa1, Laure Mathevon1,2, Thomas Lapole1, 
Author Information
1 Laboratoire Interuniversitaire de Biologie de la Motricité, Université de Lyon, 42000 Saint Etienne, France
2 Département de médecine physique et de réadaptation, hôpital Bellevue, Saint-Étienne, France

Thomas Lapole
✉ Laboratoire Interuniversitaire de Biologie de la Motricité, Bâtiment IRMIS, 10 rue de la Marandière, 42270 Saint Priest en Jarez, France
Publish Date
Received: 11-12-2015
Accepted: 18-01-2016
Published (online): 23-02-2016
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Exercise involving eccentric muscle contractions is known to decrease range of motion and increase passive muscle stiffness. This study aimed at using ultrasound shear wave elastography to investigate acute changes in biceps brachii passive stiffness following intense barbell curl exercise involving both concentric and eccentric contractions. The effect of local vibration (LV) as a recovery modality from exercise-induced increased stiffness was further investigated. Eleven subjects performed 4 bouts of 10 bilateral barbell curl movements at 70% of the one-rep maximal flexion force. An arm-to-arm comparison model was then used with one arm randomly assigned to the passive recovery condition and the other arm assigned to the LV recovery condition (10 min of 55-Hz vibration frequency and 0.9-mm amplitude). Biceps brachii shear elastic modulus measurements were performed prior to exercise (PRE), immediately after exercise (POST-EX) and 5 min after the recovery period (POST-REC). Biceps brachii shear elastic modulus was significantly increased at POST-EX (+53 ± 48%; p < 0.001) and POST-REC (+31 ± 46%; p = 0.025) when compared to PRE. No differences were found between passive and LV recovery (p = 0.210). LV as a recovery strategy from exercise-induced increased muscle stiffness was not beneficial, probably due to an insufficient mechanical action of vibrations.

Key words: Supersonic shear imaging, vibratory massage, biceps brachii, barbell curl exercise, muscle passive stiffness

           Key Points
  • Bouts of barbell curl exercise induce an immediate increased passive stiffness of the biceps brachii muscle, as evidenced by greater shear elastic modulus measured by supersonic shear imaging.
  • The administration of a vibratory massage did not reduce this acute exercise-induced increased stiffness.
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