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Electrical Muscle Stimulation

Essay by   •  March 18, 2016  •  Essay  •  329 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,310 Views

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Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS), also known as neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) or electromyostimulation, is the elicitation of muscle contraction using electric impulses. EMS has received increasing attention in the last few years because of its potential to serve as a strength training tool for healthy subjects and athletes, a rehabilitation and preventive tool for partially or totally immobilized patients, a testing tool for evaluating the neural and/or muscular function in vivo, and a post-exercise recovery tool for athletes.[1] The impulses are generated by a device and delivered through electrodes on the skin in direct proximity to the muscles to be stimulated. The impulses mimic theaction potential coming from the central nervous system, causing the muscles to contract. The electrodes are generally pads that adhere to the skin. he use of EMS has been cited by sports scientists[2] as a complementary technique for sports training and published research is available on the results obtained.[3] In the United States, EMS devices are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).[4] Strength training by NMES does promote neural and muscular adaptations that are complementary to the well-known effects of voluntary resistance training".[1] This statement is part of the editorial summary of a 2010 world congress of researchers on the subject. Additional studies on practical applications, which came after that congress, pointed out important factors that make the difference between effective and ineffective EMS.[19][20]This in retrospect explains why in the past some researchers and practitioners obtained results that others could not reproduce. Also, as published by reputable universities, EMS causes adaptation, i.e. training, of muscle fibers.[21] Because of the characteristics of skeletal muscle fibers, different types of fibers[22] can be activated to differing degrees by different types of EMS, and the modifications induced depend on the pattern of EMS activity.[14] These patterns, referred to as protocols or programs, will cause a different response from contraction of different fiber types. Some programs will improve fatigue resistance, i.e. endurance, others will increase force production.[18]

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