Starting Small after Knee Injury or SurgeryIf you've had a knee injury you may not have full motion. Can you increase overall muscle strength when only exercising in your available range of motion? This is the question physical therapists from Israel and the United States studied together at Boston University.
The results show that strength gains made inside a small range of motion can be transferred. This means overall strength is gained when the knee is only moved within a small arc of motion. As the researchers expected, the greatest gain took place within the training motion.
But they also found that everyone got stronger throughout the full range of motion. It didn't matter what kind of exercise they did, or how fast they did the exercises. The authors conclude that strength training can begin before patients get back full range of motion after a knee injury or knee surgery.
These findings will help therapists plan exercise programs after knee injuries or after surgery to repair torn ligaments.
Yaron Barak, et al. Transferability of Strength Gains from Limited to Full Range of Motion. In Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. August 2004. Vol. 36. No. 8. Pp. 1413-1420.
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