It has been reported in practice that the application of lower-body negative pressure (LBNP) to elite athletes during periods of intense training can help aid recovery.
To examine the effects of LBNP on biochemical, pain, and performance parameters during a 5-d recovery period after a damaging plyometric-exercise bout.
Randomized controlled study.
24 healthy young female adults were randomly allocated into 2 groups. Before and 1, 24, 48, and 96 h after the damaging exercise for hamstrings (50 drop jumps and 50 leg curls), participants underwent a series of tests (blood samples, pain sensation, countermovement jump, maximal isometric torque production, maximal explosive isometric torque production, and 10-m sprint). After the damaging exercise, the experimental group was exposed to intermittent LBNP therapy daily for 60 min.
There was a statistically significant interaction (P < .05) between the experimental and control groups for maximal strength, explosive strength, pain sensation, and vertical jumps (maximal power and force). No statistically significant interaction was present for the biochemical markers, jump height, and 100-m sprint.
LBNP therapy could improve recovery by limiting the loss in muscle strength and power and limiting the presence of pain.
The authors are with S2P, Science to Practice Ltd, Laboratory for Motor Control and Motor Behavior, Ljubljana, Slovenia.