Pflügers Archiv

, Volume 354, Issue 3, pp 281–286 | Cite as

The role played by elasticity in an exercise involving movements of small amplitude

  • Henri Thys
  • Giovanni A. Cavagna
  • Rodolfo Margaria
Short Communications and Technical Notes


In an exercise consisting of repetitive small jumps on both feet at a frequency of 116/min, the mechanical work performed and the O2 consumption at steady state were measured. Of the positive work performed in the jump only 40% appears to be due to the chemical transformations taking place in the contractile component of the muscle fibres; the remaining 60% appears to be due to the elastic energy accumulated in the elastic elements of the contracted stretched muscles of the lower limbs during the falling phase of the previous jump, when the body hits the ground.

Key words

Elasticity Muscle Work Efficiency Exercise 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Henri Thys
    • 1
    • 2
  • Giovanni A. Cavagna
    • 1
    • 2
  • Rodolfo Margaria
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Istituto di Fisiologia Umana dell'Università di MilanoMilanoItalia
  2. 2.Centro di Studio per la Fisiologia del Lavoro Muscolare del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (C.N.R.)MilanoItalia

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