Temporal differences in the myoelectric activity of lower limb muscles during rearfoot and forefoot running: A statistical parametric mapping approach

Oscar Valencia, Alejandro Weinstein, Rodrigo Salas, Rodrigo Guzmán-Venegas, Michail Arvanitidis, Eduardo Martinez-Valdes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The aim of this study was to apply statistical parametric mapping (SPM) to compare temporal changes in EMG amplitude between rearfoot (RF) and forefoot (FF) running techniques. Eleven recreational runners ran on a treadmill at a self-selected speed, once using a RF strike pattern and once using a FF strike pattern (randomized order). The myoelectric activity of five lower limb muscles [rectus femoris (RFe), biceps femoris (BF), tibialis anterior (TA), medial and lateral gastrocnemius (MG and LG)] was evaluated, using bipolar electromyography (EMG). EMG data from the RF and FF running techniques was then processed and posteriorly compared with SPM, dividing the analysis of the running cycle into stance and swing phases. The MG and LG muscles showed higher activation during FF running at the beginning of the stance phase and at the end of the swing phase. During the end of the swing phase the TA muscle's EMG amplitude was higher, when the RF running technique was used. A higher level of co-activation between the gastrocnemius and TA muscles was observed at the end of the swing phase during RF running. The myoelectric behaviour of the RFe and BF muscles was similar during both running techniques. These findings highlight the importance of SPM for the accurate assessment of differences in muscle activity during running and strongly suggest that these two running techniques predominately reflect adjustments of the leg and not the thigh muscles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalEuropean journal of sport science
Early online date20 May 2022
DOIs
StatePublished - 20 May 2022

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