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Context: Understanding if roller massage prior to a run can mitigate fatigue-related decrements in muscle force production during prolonged running is important because of the association between fatigue and running-related injury. Objective: The authors investigated whether a bout of roller massage prior to running would (1) mitigate fatigue-related increases in vertical average load rate and free moment of the ground reaction force of running and (2) mitigate decreases in maximal countermovement jump height. Design: Repeated-measures study. Setting: Laboratory. Participants: A total of 14 recreational endurance athletes (11 men and 3 women) volunteered for the study. Interventions: A 12.5-minute foam roller protocol for the lower extremities and a fatiguing 30-minute treadmill run. Main Outcome Measures: Vertical average load rate, free moment, and maximal jump height before (PRE) and after (POST) the fatiguing treadmill run on separate experimental days: once where participants sat quietly prior to the fatiguing run (REST) and another where the foam roller protocol was performed prior to the run (ROLL). Results: A 2-way multiple analysis of variance found no significant differences in vertical average load rate, free moment, and jump height between PRE/POST times in both REST/ROLL conditions. Conclusions: The authors concluded that recreational endurance athletes maintain running mechanics and jump performance after a fatiguing run regardless of prerun roller massage and may not rely on prerun roller massage as a form of injury prevention.
Hunter, Garcia, Ranadive, Shim, and Miller are with the Department of Kinesiology, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA. Shim and Miller are also with the Neuroscience & Cognitive Science Program, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA. Shim is also with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, South Korea.