Intra- and Intersession Reliability of Surface Electromyography on Muscles Actuating the Forearm During Maximum Voluntary Contractions

in Journal of Applied Biomechanics
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The aim of this study is to determine the intra- and intersession reliability of nonnormalized surface electromyography (sEMG) on the muscles actuating the forearm during maximum voluntary isometric contractions (MVIC). A subobjective of this study is to determine the intra- and intersession reliability of forearm MVIC force or torque, which is a prerequisite to assess sEMG reliability. Eighteen healthy adults participated at 4 different times: baseline, 1-h post, 6-h post, and 24-h post. They performed 3 MVIC trials of forearm flexion, extension, pronation, and supination. sEMG of the biceps brachii short head, brachialis, brachioradialis, triceps brachii long head, pronator teres, and pronator quadratus were measured. The intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) on MVIC ranged from 0.36 to 0.99. Reliability was excellent for flexion, extension, and supination MVIC for both intra- and intersession. The ICC on sEMG ranged from 0.58 to 0.99. sEMG reliability was excellent for brachialis, brachioradialis, and pronator quadratus, and good to excellent for triceps brachii, biceps brachii, and pronator teres. This study shows that performing 3 MVICs is sufficient to obtain highly reliable maximal sEMG over 24 h for the main muscles actuating the forearm. These results confirm the potential of sEMG for muscle motor functional monitoring.

Gaudet and Raison are with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, École Polytechnique de Montréal, Montreal QC, Canada; and the Research Centre—Rehabilitation Engineering Chair Applied in Pediatrics (RECAP), Marie Enfant Rehabilitation Centre, Montreal, QC, Canada. Dal Maso is with the Research Centre—Rehabilitation Engineering Chair Applied in Pediatrics (RECAP), Marie Enfant Rehabilitation Centre, Montreal, QC, Canada; and the Department of Kinesiology, Université de Montréal, Montreal, QC, Canada. Achiche is with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, École Polytechnique de Montréal, Montreal QC, Canada. Begon is with the Department of Kinesiology, Université de Montréal, Montreal, QC, Canada.

Address author correspondence to Guillaume Gaudet at guillaume.gaudet@polymtl.ca.