Passive stretching-induced changes detected during voluntary muscle contractions

Begovic H., CAN F., YAĞCIOĞLU S., Ozturk N.

PHYSIOTHERAPY THEORY AND PRACTICE, vol.36, no.6, pp.731-740, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 36 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/09593985.2018.1491660
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, ASSIA, BIOSIS, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.731-740
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Stretching exercises are known for reduction of musculoskeletal stiffness and elongation of electromechanical delay (EMD). However, computing a change in stiffness by means of time delays, detected between onset of electromyographic (EMG), mechanomyographic (MMG) and force signals, can reveal changes in subcomponents (Delta tEMG-MMG and Delta tMMG-FORCE) of EMD after stretching. In our study, the effect of stretching was investigated while quadriceps femoris (QF) muscle performed isometric contractions. The EMG, MMG, and Force signals were recorded from rectus femoris (RF) and vastus medialis (VM) during five voluntarily isometric contractions at 15 degrees, 30 degrees, and 45 degrees of knee flexion angle, while the leg was positioned on a custom-made device. Subjects in both intervention and control groups underwent same recording procedure before and after stretching. No difference between the baseline repeated contractions (before stretching) was ensured by ANOVA for repeated measures while a difference between PRE and POST was analyzed and concluded based on the effect size results. The EMD did not change; however, subcomponents (Delta tEMG-MMG and Delta tMMG-FORCE) showed differences within RF and VM muscles after stretching. The 30 degrees knee flexion angle appears to be a position where isometric contraction intensity needs to be carefully monitored during rehabilitation period.