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Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 2004; 36(5):

Acute Effects of Whole-Body Vibration on Lower Body Flexibility and Strength

Year: 2004

Burns PA, Beekhuizen KS, Jacobs PL
University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami FL., Miami VA Medical Ctr, Miami, FL.


Whole-body vibration (WBV) is a neuromuscular training method designed to improve muscle strength and mobility that has become an increasing popular mode of alternative training in European athletes.
The purpose of this study was to examine the acute effects of WBV training on flexibility, heart rate, and peak isokinetic torque.
Twenty healthy adults (12 males, 8 females), untrained to WBV, participated in this study. All participants stood upright on a vibration platform for a total of 6 minutes. Vibration frequency was gradually increased during the first minute to a frequency of 26 Hz, which was maintained for the remaining five minutes. Immediately prior to and following the 6 min of WBV, the subjects participated in assessments of heart rate, low back and hip-joint flexibility and isokinetic torque. Heart rate was measured using a portable heart rate monitor. Low back and hip-joint flexibility was determined using a sit-and-reach box test. Peak isokinetic torque of knee extension and flexion were measured by means of a motor driven dynamometer with velocity fixed at 120 degrees/sec. Pre- and post comparisons were made using Students paired t-tests.
Analyses revealed significant increases in flexibility (31.9 ± 7.9 vs. 27.3 ± 8.5cm, p<0.05) and in heart rate response (93.8 ± 11.8 vs. 78.8 ± 11.0bpm, p<0.05) following WBV. Peak torque of knee extension increased significantly (167.7 ± 39.7 vs. 158.9 ± 34.0 Nm, p<0.05) as did peak torque of knee flexion (92.1 ± 27.2 vs. 85.4 ± 23.9 Nm, p<0.05). The average torque of knee extension and knee flexion significantly increased (56.5 ± 11.4 vs. 52.8 ± 11.7 Nm and 39.5 ± 11.6 vs. 35.4 ± 9.5 Nm, respectively, p<0.05).
The findings of this preliminary study suggests WBV training may elicit acute improvements in flexibility, heart rate and peak isokinetic torque.

GID: 370; Last update: 05.12.2007