Compartmentalization of animal and human skeletal muscle by multiple motor nerve branches known as the neuromuscular compartment (NMC) has been observed primarily in muscles that participate in a plane of motion. In this context, the peroneus longus muscle contributes to eversion and plantarflexion of the ankle and the presence of NMCs has been reported. However, no research has reported the selective activation of the compartments of the peroneus longus during the performance of different ankle movements. The purpose of this research was to determine the contribution of peroneus longus NMCs, through multichannel surface electromyography (sEMG), to eversion and plantarflexion movements. Multi-channel sEMG was recorded from the peroneus longus muscle by using an electrode grid during eversion and plantarflexion of the ankle at 10%, 30%, 50%, and 70% of maximal voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC). The root mean square and displacement of the center of mass position in the X (COMx) and Y (COMy) components were calculated. The primary finding was that eversion showed significantly higher sEMG amplitude than plantarflexion in the posterior compartment in low, moderate, and high percentages of MVIC. However, no significant difference in sEMG amplitude was observed in the anterior compartment between eversion and plantarflexion. In addition, a posterior displacement of the COMx in eversion compared to plantarflexion in all MVIC percentages, with greater topographic distancing of the COMx at higher levels of activation. In conclusion, the peroneus longus muscle presented NMCs; the anterior compartment contributed to both eversion and plantarflexion movements, whereas the posterior compartment mainly contributed to the eversion movement of the ankle in low, moderate, and high percentages of MVIC.
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© 2021 Mendez-Rebolledo et al. 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 author and source are credited.