Non-uniform recruitment along human rectus femoris muscle during transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation
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To test the hypothesis that motor units with different axonal excitability levels are localized in specific portions of the rectus femoris (RF) muscle using transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation.
M-waves were elicited by transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation and detected from 24 sites along longitudinal line of the muscle. The stimulation was applied to the femoral nerve, and the current level was gradually increased.
The central locus activation, which is calculated from the spatial distribution of M-waves, appeared at the proximal regions at low stimulation level and then moved to the middle site of the muscle with an increase in the stimulation level. The results reveal that groups of motor units activated at different stimulation levels are located in different positions in the proximal–distal muscle direction.
Our results suggest that motor unit properties in proximal and other regions are not uniform within the RF muscle.
KeywordsNeuromuscular compartment Bi-articular muscles Multi-channel surface electromyogram M-wave
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- Watanabe K, Kouzaki M, Moritani T (2015) Heterogeneous neuromuscular activation within human rectus femoris muscle during pedaling. Muscle Nerve (in press). doi:10.1002/mus.24544