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Man Ther. 2009 Aug;14(4):415-20. doi: 10.1016/j.math.2008.06.005. Epub 2008 Sep 20.

Effects of lumbopelvic joint manipulation on quadriceps activation and strength in healthy individuals.

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University of Virginia, McCue Center, Charlottesville, VA 22903, USA.


Lumbopelvic joint manipulation has been shown to increase quadriceps force output and activation, but the duration of effect is unknown. It is also unknown whether lower grade joint mobilisations may have a similar effect. Forty-two healthy volunteers (x+/-SD; age=28.3+/-7.3 yr; ht=172.8+/-9.8 cm; mass=76.6+/-21.7 kg) were randomly assigned to one of three groups (lumbopelvic joint manipulation, 1 min lumbar passive range of motion (PROM), or prone extension on elbows for 3 min). Quadriceps force and activation were measured using the burst-superimposition technique during a seated isometric knee extension task before and at 0, 20, 40, and 60 min following intervention. Collectively, all groups demonstrated a significant decrease (p<0.001) in quadriceps force output without changes in activation (p>0.05) at all time intervals following intervention. The group that received a lumbopelvic joint manipulation demonstrated a significant increase in quadriceps force (3%) and activation (5%) (p<0.05) immediately following intervention, but this effect was not present after the 20 min interval. Since participants in this study were free of knee joint pathology, it is possible that they did not have the capacity to allow for large changes in quadriceps muscle activation to occur.

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