Exercise-induced muscle damage: effects of light exercise on damaged muscle

  • Alan E. Donnelly
  • Priscilla M. Clarkson
  • Ronald J. Maughan


The effects of performing light eccentric exercise (LB) during the period of recovery from a heavy eccentric exercise bout (HB) were studied. An experimental and a control group, each consisting of nine college age volunteers (seven women, two men) performed two HB - HB1 and HB2 - 14 days apart, using the elbow flexor and extensor muscles of one arm. The experimental group performed an additional LB on the day following the first HB. HB 1 resulted in muscle soreness, muscle weakness, changes in elbow joint flexibility, and large delayed increases in serum creatine kinase (CK) activity. The HB2 produced smaller changes in all parameters, indicating that adaptation to the effects of eccentric exercise had occurred in the muscle. The LB did not alter muscle soreness, strength or elbow flexibility, but did reduce or delay CK activity increase after HB1. The LB had no apparent effect on adaptation to HB2.

Key words

Eccentric exercise Serum creatine kinase Muscle adaptation Muscle soreness 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alan E. Donnelly
    • 2
  • Priscilla M. Clarkson
    • 1
  • Ronald J. Maughan
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Exercise ScienceUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA
  2. 2.Department of Environmental and Occupational MedicineAberdeen University Medical SchoolAberdeenUK

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