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To compare EMG activity of selected hip and knee muscle groups in female athletes performing a modified single-leg squat and the 2-leg squat using the same relative intensity.
Eleven Division I female athletes from a variety of sports (soccer, softball, and track) completed the study. EMG measurements were taken as the subjects completed 3 parallel repetitions at 85% of their 3-repetition maximum on each exercise. Mean and mean peak EMG data from the gluteus medius, hamstrings, and quadriceps and the quadriceps:hamstrings EMG ratio were compared between the 2 exercises.
Statistically higher mean (P < .01) and mean peak (P < .05) gluteus medius and mean and mean peak (P < .01) hamstring EMG activity occurred during the modified single-leg squat. The 2-leg squat produced higher mean and mean peak (P < .05) quadriceps activity and a higher quadriceps:hamstrings EMG ratio (P < .01).
Muscle-recruitment patterns appear to differ between the 2 types of squat exercises when performed at the same relative intensity by female athletes.
McCurdy, O’Kelley, Kutz, and Torres are with the Dept of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX. Langford and Ernest are with the Dept of Kinesiology, Valdosta State University, Valdosta, GA.