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Eiji Yamada, Takashi Kusaka, Satoshi Tanaka, Satoshi Mori, Hiromichi Norimatsu and Susumu Itoh


To investigate changes in motor-unit activity and muscle oxygenation (MO) during isometric contraction with and without vascular occlusion using surface electromyography (EMG) and near-infrared spectroscopy.

Design and Setting:

MO and EMG of the right vastus medialis muscle were measured during isometric contraction at 30%, 50%, and 70% maximal voluntary contraction (MVC), with and without vascular occlusion.


6 healthy men.


Integrated EMG (IEMG) and mean power frequency were significantly higher with vascular occlusion at 30% and 50% MVC. MO reduction at each load was significantly lower with vascular occlusion. A significant positive correlation was found between IEMG and changes in MO level under both conditions.


These results suggest that oxygen supply to active muscles was impaired by occlusion and that type II fibers were then preferentially recruited, which suggests that hypertrophy occurs in low-intensity exercise in patients with limitations resulting from advanced age, pain, or postsurgery limitation.

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Keitaro Kubo, Teruaki Komuro, Noriko Ishiguro, Naoya Tsunoda, Yoshiaki Sato, Naokata Ishii, Hiroaki Kanehisa and and Tetsuo Fukunaga

The present study aimed to investigate the effects of low-load resistance training with vascular occlusion on the specific tension and tendon properties by comparing with those of high-load training. Nine participants completed 12 weeks (3 days/week) of a unilateral isotonic training program on knee extensors. One leg was trained using low load (20% of 1 RM) with vascular occlusion (LLO) and other leg using high load (80% of 1 RM) without vascular occlusion (HL). Before and after training, maximal isometric knee extension torque (MVC) and muscle volume were measured. Specific tension of vastus lateralis muscle (VL) was calculated from MVC, muscle volume, and muscle architecture measurements. Stiffness of tendon-aponeurosis complex in VL was measured using ultrasonography during isometric knee extension. Both protocols significantly increased MVC and muscle volume of quadriceps femoris muscle. Specific tension of VL increased significantly 5.5% for HL, but not for LLO. The LLO protocol did not alter the stiffness of tendon-aponeurosis complex in knee extensors, while the HL protocol increased it significantly. The present study demonstrated that the specific tension and tendon properties were found to remain following low-load resistance training with vascular occlusion, whereas they increased significantly after high-load training.

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Zhen Zeng, Christoph Centner, Albert Gollhofer and Daniel König

when training with partial vascular occlusion. This is underpinned by the fact that both acute and chronic studies have demonstrated cuff pressure-dependent changes in electromyography amplitude. 10 – 12 Loenneke et al 11 and Fatela et al, 10 for instance, reported that muscle activation changes

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Lauren Anne Lipker, Caitlyn Rae Persinger, Bradley Steven Michalko and Christopher J. Durall

. Applications of vascular occlusion diminish disuse atrophy of knee extensors muscles . Med Sci Sports Exerc . 2000 ; 32 ( 12 ): 2035 – 2039 . PubMed ID: 11128848 doi:10.1097/00005768-200012000-00011 10.1097/00005768-200012000-00011 11128848 2. Ohta H , Kurosawa H , Ikeda H , Iwase Y , Satou N

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Robert S. Thiebaud, Takashi Abe, Jeremy P. Loenneke, Tyler Garcia, Yohan Shirazi and Ross McArthur

Muscle strength and size are associated with various indicators of overall health and well-being. 1 A practical solution to developing strength and muscle size in individuals who may not be able to lift heavy loads is known as “blood flow restriction (BFR)” or “vascular occlusion” exercise. This

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Manoel E. Lixandrão, Hamilton Roschel, Carlos Ugrinowitsch, Maira Miquelini, Ieda F. Alvarez and Cleiton Augusto Libardi

fatigue . J Sports Med Phys Fitness . 2013 ; 53 ( 4 ): 444 – 452 . PubMed ID: 23828293 23828293 20. Wernbom M , Augustsson J , Thomeé R . Effects of vascular occlusion on muscular endurance in dynamic knee extension exercise at different submaximal loads . J Strength Cond Res . 2006 ; 20 ( 2

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Stephen D. Patterson and Richard A. Ferguson

The response of calf-muscle strength, resting blood flow, and postocclusive blood flow (PObf) were investigated after 4 wk of low-load resistance training (LLRT) with and without blood-flow restriction in a matched-leg design. Ten untrained older individuals age 62–73 yr performed unilateral plantar-flexion LLRT at 25% 1-repetition maximum (1RM). One limb was trained with normal blood flow and the other had blood flow restricted using a pressure cuff above the knee. 1RM, isometric maximal voluntary contraction, and isokinetic strength at 0.52 rad/s increased (p < .05) more after LLRT with blood-flow restriction than with normal blood flow. Peak PObf increased (p < .05) after LLRT with blood-flow restriction, compared with no change after LLRT with normal blood flow. These results suggest that 4 wk of LLRT with blood-flow restriction may be beneficial to older individuals to improve strength and blood-flow parameters.

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Blair Mills, Brad Mayo, Francisco Tavares and Matthew Driller

Context: Given the relatively novel technique of tissue flossing is currently lacking in the research literature despite some positive findings in preliminary studies, the modality clearly requires further research. Current evidence suggests that band flossing results in performance improvements and may also be an effective method in injury prevention. Objective: Previous research has shown that tissue flossing may result in increased ankle range of motion, jump, and sprinting performance in recreational athletes. The present study aims to extend on this research, within an elite athlete sample. Design: Counterbalanced, cross-over design with experimental and control trials, separated by 1 week. Setting: University laboratory. Participants: Fourteen professional male rugby union athletes (mean [SD]: age 23.9 [2.7] y). Intervention: Application of a floss band to both ankles (FLOSS) for 2 minutes or without flossing of the ankle joints (CON) on 2 separate occasions. Main Outcome Measures: A weight-bearing lunge test, a countermovement jump test, and a 20-m sprint test at pre and at 5 and 30 minutes post application of the floss band or control. Results: There were no statistically significant interactions between treatment (FLOSS/CON) and time for any of the measured variables (P > .05). Effect size analysis revealed small benefits for FLOSS in comparison with CON for countermovement performance 5 minutes post (d = 0.28) and for 10-m (d = −0.45) and 15-m (d = −0.24) sprint time 30 minutes post. Conclusion: Findings from the current study suggest minimal benefits of tissue flossing when applied to the ankle joint in elite athletes for up to 30 minutes following their application.

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Akinobu Nishimura, Masaaki Sugita, Ko Kato, Aki Fukuda, Akihiro Sudo and Atsumasa Uchida


Recent studies have shown that low-intensity resistance training with vascular occlusion (kaatsu training) induces muscle hypertrophy. A local hypoxic environment facilitates muscle hypertrophy during kaatsu training. We postulated that muscle hypertrophy can be more efficiently induced by placing the entire body in a hypoxic environment to induce muscle hypoxia followed by resistance training.


Fourteen male university students were randomly assigned to hypoxia (Hyp) and normoxia (Norm) groups (n = 7 per group). Each training session proceeded at an exercise intensity of 70% of 1 repetition maximum (RM), and comprised four sets of 10 repetitions of elbow extension and fexion. Students exercised twice weekly for 6 wk and then muscle hypertrophy was assessed by magnetic resonance imaging and muscle strength was evaluated based on 1RM.


Muscle hypertrophy was significantly greater for the Hyp-Ex (exercised fexor of the hypoxia group) than for the Hyp-N (nonexercised fexor of the hypoxia group) or Norm-Ex fexor (P < .05, Bonferroni correction). Muscle hypertrophy was significantly greater for the Hyp-Ex than the Hyp-N extensor. Muscle strength was significantly increased early (by week 3) in the Hyp-Ex, but not in the Norm-Ex group.


This study suggests that resistance training under hypoxic conditions improves muscle strength and induces muscle hypertrophy faster than under normoxic conditions, thus representing a promising new training technique.

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Kyle M.A. Thompson, Alanna K. Whinton, Shane Ferth, Lawrence L. Spriet and Jamie F. Burr

Ischemic preconditioning (IPC) was originally developed to reduce cell necrosis during prolonged periods of ischemia. 1 In addition to the cytoprotective effects of IPC, the stimuli from cyclical periods of localized ischemia, which is similar to the periods of vascular occlusion caused by maximal