Instituto Henriqueta Teixeira

Instituto Henriqueta Teixeira



Neuromuscular factors determining 5 km running performance and running economy in well-trained athletes. Ari T. Nummela - Leena M. Paavolainen - Karen A. Sharwood - Mike I. Lambert - Timothy D. Noakes - Heikki K. Rusko

Accepted: 10 January 2006 / Published online: 3 February 2006
 Springer-Verlag 2006
This study investigated the effects of the neuromuscular and force–velocity characteristics in distance
running performance and running economy. Eighteen well-trained male distance runners performed five different tests: 20 m maximal sprint, running economy at the velocity of 4.28 m s1, 5 km time trial, maximal anaerobic running test (MART), and a treadmill test to determine VO2max. The AEMG ratio was calculated by the sum average EMG (AEMG) of the five lower extremity muscles during the 5 km divided by the sum AEMG of the same muscles during the maximal 20 m sprinting. The runners’ capacity to produce power above VO2max (MART VO2gain) was calculated by subtracting
VO2max from the oxygen demand of the maximal velocity in the MART (VMART). Velocity of 5 km (V5K) correlated with VMART (r=0.77, p<0.001) and VO2max (r=0.49, p<0.05). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that MART VO2gain and VO2max explained 73% of the variation in V5K. A significant relationship also existed between running economy and MART VO2gain (r=0.73, p<0.01). A significant correlation existed between V5K and AEMG ratio during the ground contact
phase at the 3 km (r=0.60, p<0.05) suggesting that neural input may affect distance running performance.
The results of the present study support the idea that distance running performance and running economy are related to neuromuscular capacity to produce force and
that the VMART can be used as a determinant of distance-running performance.
Keywords Distance running performance - EMG -
Ground contact time - Running economy - Stride length

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