Advertisement

Changes in intra-abdominal pressure, trunk muscle activation and force during isokinetic lifting and lowering

  • A. G. Cresswell
  • A. Thorstensson
Article

Abstract

Intra-abdominal pressure (IAP), force and electromyographic (EMG) activity from the abdominal (intra-muscular) and trunk extensor (surface) muscles were measured in seven male subjects during maximal and sub-maximal sagittal lifting and lowering with straight arms and legs. An isokinetic dynamometer was used to provide five constant velocities (0.12–0.96 m·s−1) of lifting (pulling against the resistance of the motor) and lowering (resisting the downward pull of the motor). For the maximal efforts, position-specific lowering force was greater than lifting force at each respective velocity. In contrast, corresponding IAPs during lowering were less than those during lifting. Highest mean force occurred during slow lowering (1547 N at 0.24 m·s−1) while highest IAP occurred during the fastest lifts (17.8 kPa at 0.48–0.96 m·s−1). Among the abdominal muscles, the highest level of activity and the best correlation to variations in IAP (r=0.970 over velocities) was demonstrated by the transversus abdominis muscle. At each velocity the EMG activity of the primary trunk and hip extensors was less during lowering (eccentric muscle action) than lifting (concentric muscle action) despite higher levels of force (r between −0.896 and −0.851). Sub-maximal efforts resulted in IAP increasing linearly with increasing lifting or lowering force (r=0.918 and 0.882, respectively). However, at any given force IAP was less during lowering than lifting. This difference was negated if force and IAP were expressed relative to their respective lifting and lowering maxima. It appears that the IAP increase primarily accomplished by the activation of the transversus abdominis muscle can have the dual function of stabilising the trunk and reducing compression forces in the lumbar spine via its extensor moment. The neural mechanisms involved in sensing and regulating both IAP and trunk extensor activity in relation to the type of muscle action, velocity and effort during the maximal and sub-maximal loading tasks are unknown.

Key words

Intra-abdominal pressure IAP Electromyography Intra-muscular EMG Trunk EMG Abdominal muscle Strength 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Andersson E, Swärd L, Thorstensson A (1988) Trunk muscle strength in athletes. Med Sci Sports Exerc 20:587–593Google Scholar
  2. Andersson GBJ, Örtengren R, Nachemson A (1977) Intradiskal pressure, intraabdominal pressure and myoelectric back muscle activity related to posture and loading. Clin Orthop 129:156–164Google Scholar
  3. Carew TJ (1981) Spinal cord I and II. In: Kandel ER, Schwartz JH (eds) Principles of neural science. Arnold, London, pp 284–304Google Scholar
  4. Colliander EB, Tesch PA (1989) Bilateral eccentric and concentric torque of the quadriceps and hamstrings muscles in females and males. Eur J Appl Physiol 59:227–232Google Scholar
  5. Cresswell AG (1993) Responses of intra-abdominal pressure and abdominal muscle activity during dynamic trunk loading in man. Eur J Appl Physiol 66:315–320Google Scholar
  6. Cresswell AG, Thorstensson A (1989) The role of the abdominal musculature in the elevation of the intra-abdominal pressure during specified tasks. Ergonomics 32:1237–1246Google Scholar
  7. Cresswell AG, Grundström H, Thorstensson A (1992) Observations on intraabdominal pressure and patterns of abdominal intra-muscular activity in man. Acta Physiol Scand 144:409–418Google Scholar
  8. Cresswell AG, Oddsson L, Thorstensson A (1994) The influence of sudden perturbations on trunk muscle activity and intra-abdominal pressure while standing. Exp Brain Res (in press)Google Scholar
  9. David GC (1985) Intra-abdominal pressure measurements and load capabilities for females. Ergonomics 28:345–358Google Scholar
  10. Davis PR (1956) Variations of the intra-abdominal pressure during weight lifting in various postures. J Anat 90:601Google Scholar
  11. Davis PR (1981) The use of intra-abdominal pressure in evaluating stresses on the lumbar spine. Spine 6:90–92Google Scholar
  12. De Looze MP, Toussaint HM, Van Dieen JH, Kemper HCG (1993) Joint moments and muscle activity in the lowering extremities and lower back in lifting and lowering tasks. J Biomech 26:1067–1076Google Scholar
  13. Edman KAP, Elzinga G, Noble MIM (1978) Enhancement of mechanical performance by stretch during tetanic contractions of vertebrate skeletal muscle fibres. J Physiol (Lond) 281:139–155Google Scholar
  14. El-Sayyad MM, Sabry I (1987) Intra-abdominal pressure as a quantitative measure for spinal stress. J Sport Physical Therap 9:70–76Google Scholar
  15. Eloranta V, Komi PV (1980) Function of the quadriceps femoris muscle under maximal concentric and eccentric contractions. Electromyogr Clin Neurophysiol 20:159–174Google Scholar
  16. Fujiwara M, Nakano K, Fukuda K, Maruo S (1985) Muscular factors influencing the intra-abdominal pressure (abstract). Proceedings from the Annual Meeting of the International Society of Electrophysiological Kinesiology, Tokyo, pp 130–131Google Scholar
  17. Grew ND (1980) Intraabdominal pressure response to loads applied to the torso in normal subjects. Spine 5:149–154Google Scholar
  18. Grillner S, Nilson J, Thorstensson A (1978) Intra-abdominal pressure changes during natural movements in man. Acta Physiol Scand 103:275–283Google Scholar
  19. Hanten W, Ramberg C (1988) Effect of stabilization on maximal isokinetic torque of the quadriceps femoris muscle during concentric and eccentric contractions. Phys Ther 68:219–222Google Scholar
  20. Hemborg B, Moritz U, Hamberg J, Löwing H, Åkesson I (1983) Intra-abdominal pressure and trunk muscle activity during lifting — effect of abdominal training in healthy subjects. Scand J Rehabil Med 15:183–196Google Scholar
  21. Hemborg B, Moritz U, Löwing H (1985) Intra-abdominal pressure and trunk muscle activity during lifting. Scand J Rehabil Med 17:25–38Google Scholar
  22. Kleinbaum DG, Kupper LL (1978) Applied regression analysis and other multivariate methods. Duxbury Press, North Scituate, RIGoogle Scholar
  23. Kumar S (1980) Physiological responses to weight lifting in different planes. Ergonomics 23:987–993Google Scholar
  24. Levin A, Wyman J (1927) The viscous elastic properties of muscle. Proc R Soc Lond [Biol] 101:218–243Google Scholar
  25. Loeb GE, Gans C (1986) Design and construction of electrodes. In: Loeb GE, Gans C (eds) Electromyography for experimentalists. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp 109–119Google Scholar
  26. Mairiaux P, Malchaire J (1988) Relation between intra-abdominal pressure and lumbar stress: effect of trunk posture. Ergonomics 31:1331–1342Google Scholar
  27. Mairiaux P, Davis PR, Stubbs DA, Baty D (1984) Relation between intra-abdominal pressure and lumbar moments when lifting weights in the errect posture. Ergonomics 27:883–894Google Scholar
  28. Marras WS, Mirka G (1989) Trunk strength during asymmetric trunk motion. Hum Factors 31:667–677Google Scholar
  29. Marras WS, King AI, Joynt RL (1984) Measurements of loads on the lumbar spine under isometric and isokinetic conditions. Spine 9:176–187Google Scholar
  30. Marras WS, Joynt RL, King AI (1985) The force-velocity relation and intra-abdominal pressure during lifting activities. Ergonomics 28:603–613Google Scholar
  31. McGill SM, Sharratt MT (1990) Relationship between the intraabdominal pressure and trunk EMG. Clin Biomech 5:59–67Google Scholar
  32. Morris JM, Lucas DM, Bresler B (1961) Role of the trunk in stability of the spine. J Bone Joint Surg 43:327–351Google Scholar
  33. Nachemson AL, Andersson GBJ, Schultz AB (1986) Valsalva maneuver biomechanics — effects on lumbar trunk loads of elevated intraabdominal pressures. Spine 11:476–479Google Scholar
  34. Seger JY, Westing SH, Hanson M, Karlson E, Ekblom B (1988) A new dynamometer measuring concentric and eccentric muscle strength during accelerated, decelerated, or isokinetic movements. Eur J Appl Physiol 57:526–530Google Scholar
  35. Stalhammar HR, Leskinen TPJ, Takala E (1987) Intra-abdominal pressure and oblique abdominal muscle activity when lifting and lowering. In: Jonsson B (ed) Biomechanics X-A. Human Kinetics, Champaign, Ill., pp 59–62Google Scholar
  36. Tesch PA, Dudley GA, Duvoison MR, Hather BM (1990) Force and EMG signal patterns during repeated bouts of concentric and eccentric muscle actions. Acta Physiol Scand 138:263–271Google Scholar
  37. Thorstensson A, Nilsson J (1982) Trunk muscle strength during constant velocity movements. Scand J Rehabil Med 14:61–68Google Scholar
  38. Troup JDG, Leskinen TPJ, Stålhammar HR, Kuorinka IAA (1983) A comparison of intraabdominal pressure increases, hip torque, and lumbar vertebral compression in different lifting techniques. Hum Factors 25:517–525Google Scholar
  39. Westing SH, Seger JY, Karlson E, Ekblom B (1988) Eccentric and concentric torque velocity characteristics of the quadriceps femoris in man. Eur J Appl Physiol 58:100–104Google Scholar
  40. Westing SH, Seger JY, Thorstensson A (1990) Effects of electrical stimulation on eccentric and concentric torque-velocity relationships during knee extension in man. Acta Physiol Scand 140:17–22Google Scholar
  41. Westing SH, Cresswelt AG, Thorstensson A (1991) Muscle activation during maximal voluntary eccentric and concentric knee extension. Eur J Appl Physiol 62:104–108Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. G. Cresswell
    • 1
  • A. Thorstensson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NeuroscienceKarolinska InstituteStockholmSweden

Personalised recommendations