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Surface EMG and muscle fatigue: multi-channel approaches to the study of myoelectric manifestations of muscle fatigue

In a broad view, fatigue is used to indicate a degree of weariness. On a muscular level,fatigue posits the reduced capacity of muscle fibres to produce force, even in the presence of motor neuron excitation via either spinal mechanisms or electric pulses applied externally. Prior to decreased force, when sustaining physically demanding tasks, alterations in the muscle electrical properties take place. These alterations, termed myoelectric manifestation of fatigue, can be assessed non-invasively with a pair of surface electrodes positioned appropriately on the target muscle; traditional approach. A relatively more recent approach consists of the use of multiple electrodes. This multi-channel approach provides access to a set of physiologically relevant variables on the global muscle level or on the level of single motor units, opening new fronts for the study of muscle fatigue; it allows for: (i) a more precise quantification of the propagation velocity, a physiological variable of marked interest to the study of fatigue; (ii) the assessment of regional, myoelectric manifestations of fatigue; (iii) the analysis of single motor units, with the possibility to obtain information about motor unit control and fibre membrane changes.

This review provides a methodological account on the multi-channel approach for the study of myoelectric manifestation of fatigue and on the experimental conditions to which it applies, as well as examples of their current applications.

Surface EMG and muscle fatigue: multi-channel approaches to the study of myoelectric manifestations of muscle fatigue
In a broad view, fatigue is used to indicate a degree of weariness. On a muscular level, fatigue posits the reduced capacity of muscle fibres to produce force, even in the presence of motor neuron excitation via either spinal mechanisms or electric pulses applied externally. Prior to decreased force, when sustaining physically demanding tasks, alterations in the muscle electrical properties take place. These alterations, termed myoelectric manifestation of fatigue, can be assessed non-invasively with a pair of surface electrodes positioned appropriately on the target muscle; traditional approach. A relatively more recent approach consists of the use of multiple electrodes. This multi-channel approach provides access to a set of physiologically relevant variables on the global muscle level or on the level of single motor units, opening new fronts for the study of muscle fatigue; it allows for: (i) a more precise quantification of the propagation velocity, a physiological variable of marked interest to the study of fatigue; (ii) the assessment of regional, myoelectric manifestations of fatigue; (iii) the analysis of single motor units, with the possibility to obtain information about motor unit control and fibre membrane changes.

This review provides a methodological account on the multi-channel approach for the study of myoelectric manifestation of fatigue and on the experimental conditions to which it applies, as well as examples of their current applications.

 

Surface EMG and muscle fatigue: multi-channel approaches to the study of myoelectric manifestations of muscle fatigue

In a broad view, fatigue is used to indicate a degree of weariness. On a muscular
level, fatigue posits the reduced capacity of muscle fibres to produce force,
even in the presence of motor neuron excitation via either spinal mechanisms
or electric pulses applied externally. Prior to decreased force, when sustaining
physically demanding tasks, alterations in the muscle electrical properties
take place. These alterations, termed myoelectric manifestation of fatigue,
can be assessed non-invasively with a pair of surface electrodes positioned
appropriately on the target muscle; traditional approach. A relatively more
recent approach consists of the use of multiple electrodes. This multi-channel
approach provides access to a set of physiologically relevant variables on the
global muscle level or on the level of single motor units, opening new fronts
for the study of muscle fatigue; it allows for: (i) a more precise quantification
of the propagation velocity, a physiological variable of marked interest to the
study of fatigue; (ii) the assessment of regional, myoelectric manifestations
of fatigue; (iii) the analysis of single motor units, with the possibility to
obtain information about motor unit control and fibre membrane changes.
This review provides a methodological account on the multi-channel approach for the study of myoelectric manifestation of fatigue and on the
experimental conditions to which it applies, as well as examples of their
current applications.

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