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Type: Journal article
Title: Training adaptations in the behavior of human motor units
Author: Duchateau, J.
Semmler, J.
Enoka, R.
Citation: Journal of Applied Physiology, 2006; 101(6):1766-1775
Publisher: Amer Physiological Soc
Issue Date: 2006
ISSN: 8750-7587
Statement of
Jacques Duchateau, John G. Semmler, and Roger M. Enoka
Abstract: The purpose of this brief review is to examine the neural adaptations associated with training, by focusing on the behavior of single motor units. The review synthesizes current understanding on motor unit recruitment and rate coding during voluntary contractions, briefly describes the techniques used to record motor unit activity, and then evaluates the adaptations that have been observed in motor unit activity during maximal and submaximal contractions. Relatively few studies have directly compared motor unit behavior before and after training. Although some studies suggest that the voluntary activation of muscle can increase slightly with strength training, it is not known how the discharge of motor units changes to produce this increase in activation. The evidence indicates that the increase is not attributable to changes in motor unit synchronization. It has been demonstrated, however, that training can increase both the rate of torque development and the discharge rate of motor units. Furthermore, both strength training and practice of a force-matching task can evoke adaptations in the discharge characteristics of motor units. Because the variability in discharge rate has a significant influence on the fluctuations in force during submaximal contractions, the changes produced with training can influence motor performance during activities of daily living. Little is known, however, about the relative contributions of the descending drive, afferent feedback, spinal circuitry, and motor neuron properties to the observed adaptations in motor unit activity.
Keywords: electromyogram
discharge rate
motor unit synchronization
Description: Copyright © 2005 by the American Physiological Society
DOI: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00543.2006
Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest 6
Molecular and Biomedical Science publications

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