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Acta Physiol Scand. 1988 Nov;134(3):341-6.

Do the fibre-type proportion and the angular velocity influence the mean power frequency of the electromyogram?

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National Institute of Occupational Health, Work Physiology Unit, Umeå, Sweden.


The dependence of the mean-power frequency and the signal amplitude of the electromyogram (EMG) on the angular velocity and the fiber-type proportion were investigated in nine female volunteers. The subjects were required to perform maximum knee extensions using an isokinetic dynamometer at different angular velocities; 0.57, 1.05, 1.57, 2.09 and 3.14 rad s-1. Electromyographic signals were obtained from the vastus lateralis, vastus medialis and the rectus femoris muscles. The angle and the torque signals were recorded simultaneously with the three EMG signals on a tape-recorder. From the EMG recordings the mean power frequency (MPF) and the signal amplitude were determined. Muscle biopsies were later obtained from the right vastus lateralis and stained for alkaline and acid mATPase for the determination of fibre-type proportions and areas. Neither the signal amplitude nor the MPF of the EMG of the three muscles were dependent on the angular velocity. The MPF of the vastus lateralis correlated significantly (r = -0.93) with the type 1 fibre proportion at 1.57 rad s-1. However, there was no significant correlation between the areas of the fibre types, alone or together, and the MPF. In conclusion the fibre-type proportion was the major factor behind the MPF irrespective of angular velocity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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