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Asymmetry of muscle strength in elite athletes

DOI: 10.2478/v10101-009-0002-1

Keywords: Functional asymmetry, Muscle strength, Peak torque, Judo, Wrestling

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Abstract:

Study aim: To determine muscle strength variables in elite judoists and wrestlers since thigh muscle strength and bilaterally balanced flexor-to-extensor ratio minimise injury risk and are desirable for achieving sport successes. Material and methods: Judoists, wrestlers and untrained subjects, 10 each, were subjected to isokinetic strength measurements of relative peak torques of knee flexor and extensor muscles on "Easy-Tech" dynamometer in concentric-concentric mode. Results: Mean relative peak muscle torques for knee flexors ranged from 1.14 ±0.27 (untrained) to 1.57 ±0.40 (judoists) N·m/kg and for knee extensors from 2.77 ± 0.34 (untrained) to 3.60 ± 0.64 (wrestlers) N·m/kg. The flexor-to-extensor ratios ranged from 39.3 ± 6.0 to 47.8 ± 10.8% and did not differ significantly between groups. Absolute right/left asymmetry for knee flexors ranged from 14.6 ± 10.4 to 17.4 ± 11.8% and was significantly (p<0.01) higher than for knee extensors (7.2 ± 6.8 to 8.6 ± 7.7%). All asymmetry indices were significant (p<0.01), no significant between group differences being detected. Conclusions: Implementing new training elements and modalities may improve the performance and prevent lateral asymmetry thus decreasing the risk of injuries.

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