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The Positive Influence of Muscle Stiffness & Performance in Elite Sport - 4 Researched Conclusions

There have been a lot of well-researched studies on the link between muscle stiffness and performance.

  1. Dynamic and explosive performance can benefit from increased muscle and tendon stiffness.

  2. When the degree of tightness is great, more elastic energy may be stored (think of it like a rubber band)

  3. Muscle and tendon tension results in an increase in peak force output, which in turn increases velocity and strength (power movements).

  4. Muscle & tendon tension improves running speed, vertical leap, and movement efficiency, making it a vital trait for success in most high-level sporting settings.

Kuitunen Sami, Komi Paavo V and Kyro¨ La¨ Inen Heikki. Knee and ankle joint stiffness in sprint running. Medicine and Science in Sports & Exercise. 34, 166-173, 2002.

Arampatzis A, Bruggemann GP, Klapsing GM. Leg stiffness and mechanical energetic processes during jumping on a sprung surface. Medicine and Science in Sport and Exercise. 33:923-931, 2001

Blickhan R, Full R.J., Similarity in multi legged locomotion: Bouncing like a monopode. Journal of Comparative Physiology, 5:509-517, 1993

Brughelli Matt, Cronin John. Influence of Running Velocity on Vertical Leg and Joint Stiffness. Journal of Sports Medicine 38:647-657, 2008

Butler R.J., Crowell Harrison, Davis Irene McKay. Lower Extremity Stiffness: Implications for Performance and Injury . Journal of Clinical Biomechanics 18:511-517, 2003

Brughelli M., Cronin J. A review of research on the mechanical stiffness in running and jumping: methodology and implications. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports 18:417-426, 2008

Chelly Souhaiel M., Denis Christian. Leg power and hopping stiffness: relationship with sprint running performance. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 33:326-333, 2001

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