Tendon Cross-Sectional Area is Not Associated with Muscle Volume

in Journal of Applied Biomechanics
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Recent studies have reported that resistance training increases the cross-sectional areas (CSAs) of tendons; however, this finding has not been consistently observed across different studies. If tendon CSA increases through resistance training, resistance-trained individuals should have larger tendon CSAs as compared with untrained individuals. Therefore, in the current study, we aimed to investigate whether resistance training increases tendon CSAs by comparing resistance-trained and untrained individuals. Sixteen males, who were either body builders or rugby players, were recruited as the training group, and 11 males, who did not participate in regular resistance training, were recruited into the control group. Tendon CSAs and muscle volumes of the triceps brachii, quadriceps femoris, and triceps surae were calculated from images obtained by using magnetic resonance imaging. The volumes of the 3 muscles were significantly higher in the training group than in the control group (P < .001 for all muscles). However, a significant difference in tendon CSAs was found only for the distal portion of the triceps surae tendon (P = .041). These findings indicate that tendon CSA is not associated with muscle volume, suggesting that resistance training does not increase tendon CSA.

Atsuki Fukutani is with The Research Organization of Science and Technology, Ritsumeikan University, Kusatsu, Shiga, Japan; and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Research Fellowship for Young Scientists, Tokyo, Japan. Toshiyuki Kurihara is with the faculty of Sport and Health Science, Ritsumeikan University, Kusatsu, Shiga, Japan.

Address author correspondence to Atsuki Fukutani at atsukifukutani@gmail.com.
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