Nutrition and Health Sciences, Department of


Date of this Version



International Journal of Exercise Science 10(3): 365-378, 2017.


CC-BY-ND license


The purpose of the current study was to examine the time course of changes in neuromuscular responses from the vastus medialis (VM) during low versus high intensity dynamic constant external resistance (DCER) leg extension muscle actions to failure. Thirteen men performed DCER leg extensions to failure at 30% and 70% 1-repetition maximum (1-RM) as well as 1-RM measurements pretest and posttest. Electromyogaphy and mechanomyographic signals were measured from the VM. There were no differences in neuromuscular responses pretest versus posttest 1-RM. There were timedependent differences between the 30% and 70% 1-RM protocols. The initial phase of the 30% 1- RM protocol exhibited increases in electromyographic-amplitude and mechanomyographic amplitude, but no changes at 70% 1-RM. The middle phases indicated decreases in mechanomyographic amplitude at 30% 1-RM, but increases in mechanomyographic amplitude at 70% 1-RM. The 70% 1-RM protocol had earlier decrease in mechanomyographic frequency than 30% 1-RM. Both protocols in the final phases exhibited increases in electromyographic amplitude and mechanomyogrpahic-amplitude, but decreases in electromyographic frequency and mechanomyographic frequency. Low and high intensity DCER leg extensions to failure have time-dependent differences in neuromuscular responses during the process of fatigue which suggested that motor unit activation strategies may by influenced by the intensity of a fatiguing workbout. Thus, examining the time course of changes in neuromuscular responses during a fatiguing workbout allowed for the identification of the time-points associated with the onset of fatigue.