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Title: Barbell back squat : How do resistance bands affect muscle activation and knee kinematics?
Authors: Reece, Madeleine B.
Arnold, Graham P
Nasir, Sadiq
Wang, Weijie W
Abboud, Rami 
Affiliations: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering 
Keywords: Knee Injuries
Weight lifting
Subjects: Biomechanics
Physical activities
Issue Date: 2020
Part of: BMJ open sport & exercise medicine journal
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Start page: 1
End page: 9
Objectives This study aimed to determine whether looped resistance bands affect knee kinematics and lower body muscle activation during the barbell back squat. Methods Twenty-six healthy participants (13 female, 13 male) calculated their one repetition maximum (RM) prior to data collection. Each participant performed three squats at both 80% and 40% 1RM wearing a light resistance band, an extra-heavy resistance band and no resistance band. Vicon 3D motion analysis cameras were used to collect the kinematic data, and Delsys Trigno Lab wireless electromyography (EMG) system was used to measure vastus medialis, vastus lateralis, gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and biceps femoris muscle activity. Peak knee flexion angle, peak knee valgus angle and maximum tibial rotation values were examined. Peak EMG values were also analysed after being normalised and expressed as a percentage of maximum voluntary contraction (MVC). Results Gluteus maximus (GM) activity is significantly increased when a resistance band is used during squatting. However, squatting with a resistance band is detrimental to knee kinematics as it leads to an increase in knee valgus angle and maximum tibial rotation angle. A direct correlation is recorded between an increase in resistance and an increase in these two angles. Conclusions Squatting with resistance bands is likely to increase the risk of knee injury. Coaches and clinicians who already implement this technique are advised to remove resistance band squats from training and rehabilitation programmes. Further research evaluating the long-term effects of using resistance bands during the barbell back squat should be considered.
Ezproxy URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

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