Temporal coactivation of abdominal muscles during dynamic stability exercises.

By London Spine

Temporal coactivation of abdominal muscles during dynamic stability exercises.

J Strength Cond Res. 2010 May;24(5):1246-55

Authors: Hubley-Kozey CL, Hatfield GL, Davidson KC

The purpose of this study was to determine abdominal muscle temporal responses to a leg-loading exercise protocol and if differences exist between those able and unable to minimize lumbar-pelvic motion during this protocol. The focus was a supine bilateral leg-loading task that incorporated a slide (level 4) or no slide (level 5). Thirty-three healthy subjects (mean age 24 years) completed the task while surface electromyograms (EMG) from 5 abdominal muscle sites were recorded. Subjects were assigned to stable or unstable groups based on their ability to minimize lumbar-pelvic motion. After time and amplitude normalization, electromyography waveforms were entered into a pattern recognition procedure and scores for each principal pattern were calculated. Four principal patterns explained 90% of variance in the waveform data, with these principal patterns capturing the mean pattern, the relative amplitude change during the leg-extension phase, and subtle changes in shape throughout the exercise. Significant interactions (p < 0.05) were found for principal patterns; 1, 2, and 4 scores; and significant main (p < 0.05) effects for principal pattern 3 scores. These results illustrate temporal synchrony among the abdominal wall muscle activation during the bilateral leg-loading tasks; however, there was less variability in the activation patterns during the leg-lift and leg extension-phases for those who were able to minimize lumbar-pelvic motion compared to those who were unable to perform the task correctly. These results illustrate the need to focus on coordinated recruiting of the abdominal wall muscles in an organized manner and not simply increasing the intensity of activation for stabilization training.

PMID: 20386130 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]