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Effect of Segment-Body Vibration on Strength Parameters

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      In this study, we examine the biomechanical advantage of combining localized vibrations to hamstring muscles involved in a traditional resistance training routine.


      Thirty-six male and female participants with at least 2 years of experience in resistance training were recruited from the German Sport University Cologne. The participants were randomized into two training groups: vibration training group (VG) and traditional training group (TTG). Both groups underwent a 4-week training phase, where each participant worked out at 70 % of the individual 1 repeat maximum (RM—maximum load capacity of a muscle for one lift to fatigue) (4 sets with 12 repetitions each). For participants in the VG group, local vibration was additionally applied directly to hamstring muscles during exercise. A 2-week examination phase preceded the pretests. After the pretests, the subjects underwent a prescribed training for 4 weeks. At the conclusion of the training, a 2-week detraining was imposed and then the study concluded with posttests and retest.


      The measured parameters were maximum isometric force of the hamstrings and maximum range of motion and muscle tension at maximum knee angle. The study revealed a significant increase in maximum isometric force in both training groups (VG = 21 %, TTG = 14 %). However, VG groups showed an increase in their range of motion by approximately 2 %. Moreover, the muscle tension at maximum knee angle increased less in VG (approximately 35 %) compared to TG (approximately 46 %).


      We conclude that segment-body vibrations applied in resistance training can offer an effective tool to increase maximum isometric force, compared to traditional training. The cause for these findings can be attributed to the additional local vibration stimulus.

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      Most cited references 70

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      Resistance exercise training: its role in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.

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        The use of vibration as an exercise intervention.

        The use of vibration as a means for enhancing athletic performance is a recent issue in exercise physiology. Current evidence suggests that vibration is effective in enhancing strength and the power capacity of humans, although the mechanisms mediating this effect are unknown.
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          Variability in muscle size and strength gain after unilateral resistance training.

          This study assessed variability in muscle size and strength changes in a large cohort of men and women after a unilateral resistance training program in the elbow flexors. A secondary purpose was to assess sex differences in size and strength changes after training. Five hundred eighty-five subjects (342 women, 243 men) were tested at one of eight study centers. Isometric (MVC) and dynamic strength (one-repetition maximum (1RM)) of the elbow flexor muscles of each arm and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the biceps brachii (to determine cross-sectional area (CSA)) were assessed before and after 12 wk of progressive dynamic resistance training of the nondominant arm. Size changes ranged from -2 to +59% (-0.4 to +13.6 cm), 1RM strength gains ranged from 0 to +250% (0 to +10.2 kg), and MVC changes ranged from -32 to +149% (-15.9 to +52.6 kg). Coefficients of variation were 0.48 and 0.51 for changes in CSA (P = 0.44), 1.07 and 0.89 for changes in MVC (P < 0.01), and 0.55 and 0.59 for changes in CSA (P < 0.01) in men and women, respectively. Men experienced 2.5% greater gains for CSA (P < 0.01) compared with women. Despite greater absolute gains in men, relative increases in strength measures were greater in women versus men (P < 0.05). Men and women exhibit wide ranges of response to resistance training, with some subjects showing little to no gain, and others showing profound changes, increasing size by over 10 cm and doubling their strength. Men had only a slight advantage in relative size gains compared with women, whereas women outpaced men considerably in relative gains in strength.

            Author and article information

            [ ]Sport Science Program, Qatar University, P.O. Box 2713, Doha, Qatar
            [ ]Institute of Training Science and Sport Informatics, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany
            [ ]The German Research Center, Center of Elite Sport, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany
            [ ]Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Northeastern University, Boston, MA USA
            +974-(66231798) ,
            Sports Med Open
            Sports Med Open
            Sports Medicine - Open
            Springer International Publishing (Cham )
            3 July 2015
            3 July 2015
            : 1
            : 1
            © Goebel et al. 2015

            This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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