The Effect of Rest Intervals on Knee-Extension Torque Production with Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation

in Journal of Sport Rehabilitation
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Previous studies using neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) have suggested that 30-second rest intervals are too short for sufficient recovery.


To compare the effect of rest interval on knee-extension torque production.


Counterbalanced mixed design to test independent variable, rest interval; ANOVA to analyze dependent variable, percentage decline.


Athletic training research laboratory.


24 healthy men and women.


Participants performed knee extension under 2 contraction conditions, maximum voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC) and NMES with either 30- or 120-second rest between repetitions.

Main Outcome Measure:

Peak torque produced during each repetition of a 5-repetition set.


The main effect for rest interval was significant (F1,23 = 30.30, P = .001), as was the main effect for condition (F1,23 = 11.18, P = .003).


A 120-second rest between repetitions is recommended when using NMES in early rehabilitation because force decline across repetitions with 30-second rest during NMES is greater than with MVIC.

Holcomb, Rubley, and Girouard are with Dept of Kinesiology, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV 89154-3034. Miller is with the Dept of HPER, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI 49001.

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