Association Between Contraction-Induced Increases in Elbow Flexor Muscle Thickness and Distal Biceps Brachii Tendon Moment Arm Depends on the Muscle Thickness Measurement Site

in Journal of Applied Biomechanics
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The purpose of this study was to investigate how the contraction-induced increase in distal biceps brachii tendon moment arm is related to that in elbow flexor muscle thickness, with a specific emphasis on the influence of the site-related differences in muscle thickness. The moment arm and muscle thickness were determined from sagittal and cross-sectional images, respectively, of the right arm obtained by magnetic resonance imaging of nine young men. The muscle thickness was measured at levels from the reference site (60% of the upper arm length from the acromial process of the scapula to the lateral epicondyle of the humerus) to 60 mm distal to it (every 10 mm; 7 measurement sites). At 80° of elbow flexion, the moment arm and muscle thickness were determined at rest and during 60% of maximal voluntary contraction (60%MVC) of isometric elbow flexion. Only the relative change from rest to 60%MVC in muscle thickness at the level 60 mm distal to the reference site correlated significantly with that of the moment arm. This result indicates that the contraction-induced increase in distal biceps brachii tendon moment arm is related to that in elbow flexor muscle thickness near the corresponding muscle-tendon junction.

Ryota Akagi (Corresponding Author) is with the College of Systems Engineering and Science, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Japan. Soichiro Iwanuma is with the Faculty of Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Saitama, Japan. Satoru Hashizume is with the Graduate School of Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Saitama, Japan, and with the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. Hiroaki Kanehisa is with the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Kanoya, Kagoshima, Japan. Toshimasa Yanai is with the Faculty of Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Saitama, Japan. Yasuo Kawakami is with the Faculty of Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Saitama, Japan.