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Patellar tendon adaptations to downhill running training and their relationships with changes in mechanical stress and loading history

Bontemps, B, Gruet, M, Louis, J, Owens, DJ, Miríc, S, Vercruyssen, F and Erskine, R Patellar tendon adaptations to downhill running training and their relationships with changes in mechanical stress and loading history. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. ISSN 1064-8011 (Accepted)

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It is unclear if human tendon adapts to moderate-intensity, high-volume chronic eccentric exercise, e.g. downhill running (DR) training. This study aimed to investigate the time course of patellar tendon (PT) adaptation to short-term DR training, and to determine if changes in PT properties were related to changes in mechanical stress and/or loading history. Twelve untrained, young, healthy adults (five women, seven men) took part in four weeks’ DR training, comprising 10 sessions. Running speed was equivalent to 60-65% V̇O2max, and session duration increased gradually (15-30min) throughout training. Isometric knee-extensor maximal voluntary torque (MVT), vastus lateralis (VL) muscle physiological cross-sectional area (PCSA) and volume, and PT CSA, stiffness and Young’s modulus were assessed at weeks 0, 2 and 4 via ultrasound and isokinetic dynamometry. PT stiffness (+6.4±7.4%), Young’s modulus (+6.9±8.8%), isometric MVT (+7.5±12.3%), VL volume (+6.6±3.2%), PCSA (+3.8±3.3%), increased after four weeks’ DR (p<0.05), with no change in PT CSA. Changes in VL PCSA correlated with changes in PT stiffness (r=0.70; p=0.02) and Young’s modulus (r=0.63; p=0.04) from 0-to-4 weeks, while changes in MVT did not correlate with changes in PT stiffness and Young’s modulus at any time point (p>0.05). To conclude, four weeks’ DR training promoted substantial changes in PT stiffness and Young’s modulus that are typically observed after high-intensity, low-volume resistance training. These tendon adaptations appeared to be driven primarily by loading history (represented by VL muscle hypertrophy), while increased mechanical stress throughout the training period did not appear to contribute to changes in PT stiffness or Young’s modulus.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the author accepted version of an article to be published in a later issue.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1106 Human Movement and Sports Sciences; 1116 Medical Physiology; Sport Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QP Physiology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports Medicine
Divisions: Sport & Exercise Sciences
Publisher: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2023 14:18
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2023 14:18
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/19785

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