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J Strength Cond Res. 2002 Nov;16(4):547-50.

Electromyographic and kinetic analysis of traditional, chain, and elastic band squats.

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Department of Physical Therapy/Exercise Science Degree Program, Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53201, USA.


This study examined mean integrated electromyography (I-EMG) for the quadriceps and hamstring muscle groups, as well as mean and peak vertical ground reaction forces (GRFs), for 3 conditions of the back squat. Conditions included (a) squat with barbell and weight plates, (b) squat with barbell and weight plates plus chains hung on each end of the barbell to replace approximately 10% of the squat load, and (c) squat with barbell and weight plates plus elastic bands offering resistance equivalent to approximately 10% of the squat load. Weight plates equal to the load added by either the chains or elastic bands were removed for the latter 2 squat conditions. Vertical GRFs were obtained during a single testing session for all 3 squat conditions. The tests were performed on a 2-cm thick aluminum platform (0.76 x 1.0 m) bolted directly to a force plate (OR6-5-2000, AMTI, Watertown, MA). Surface electrode I-EMG data from the quadriceps and hamstrings were recorded at 500 Hz. The exercise order was randomly determined for 11 NCAA Division I athletes who had experience using these types of squats. A repeated measures analysis of covariance revealed no differences in I-EMG and GRF during the eccentric or concentric phase for any of the 3 squat conditions. Analyses showed that mean GRF and I-EMG was significantly different between eccentric and concentric phases for all groups. The results question the usefulness of performing squats combining barbell and weight plates with chain and elastic resistance.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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