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Faster early rate of force development in warmer muscle: an in vivo exploration of fascicle dynamics and muscle-tendon mechanical properties

Abstract : Although heat exposure has been shown to increase the skeletal rate of force development (RFD), the underlying processes remain unknown. This study investigated the effect of heat on gastrocnemius medialis (GM) muscle-tendon properties and interactions. Sixteen subjects performed electrically evoked and voluntary contractions combined with ultrafast ultrasound under thermoneutral [control (CON): 25.8 ± 1.8°C, core temperature 37.0 ± 0.3°C, muscle temperature 34.0 ± 1.1°C] and passive heat exposure [hot (HOT): 47.4 ± 1.8°C, core temperature 38.4 ± 0.3°C, muscle temperature 37.0 ± 0.8°C] conditions. Maximal voluntary force changes did not reach statistical significance (−5.0 ± 11.3%, P = 0.052) whereas voluntary activation significantly decreased (−4.6 ± 8.7%, P = 0.038) in HOT. Heat exposure significantly increased voluntary RFD before 100 ms from contraction onset (+48.2 ± 62.7%; P = 0.013), without further changes after 100 ms. GM fascicle dynamics during electrically evoked and voluntary contractions remained unchanged between conditions. Joint velocity at a given force was higher in HOT (+7.1 ± 6.6%; P = 0.004) but the fascicle force-velocity relationship remained unchanged. Passive muscle stiffness and active tendon stiffness were lower in HOT than CON (P ≤ 0.030). This study showed that heat-induced increases in early voluntary RFD may not be attributed to changes in contractile properties. Late voluntary RFD was unaltered, possibly due to decreased soft tissues’ stiffness in heat. Further investigations are required to explore the influence of neural drive and motor unit recruitment in the enhancement of explosive strength elicited by heat exposure.
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Contributeur : Adèle Mornas Connectez-vous pour contacter le contributeur
Soumis le : vendredi 30 septembre 2022 - 10:33:59
Dernière modification le : mardi 18 octobre 2022 - 03:04:44

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Adèle MORNAS, Sébastien Racinais, Franck Brocherie, Marine Alhammoud, Robin Hager, et al.. Faster early rate of force development in warmer muscle: an in vivo exploration of fascicle dynamics and muscle-tendon mechanical properties. American Journal of Physiology, 2022, 323 (1), ⟨10.1152/ajpregu.00280.2021⟩. ⟨hal-03792454⟩

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