This study compared the effects of Versa Gripps® compared to no grips on pull-ups to failure in and surface electromyographic (sEMG) signal amplitude during pull-ups on the wrist flexors (WF), wrist extensors (WE), latissimus dorsi (LAT), and infraspinatus (INF) muscles in strength-trained females.
Material and Method. Seventeen healthy females volunteered to participate in the study. Pull-ups were performed to failure to the beat of a metronome. Surface EMG was computed using the root-mean-square (RMS) of the signal intensity with a sampling frequency of 1000 Hz, integrated over 500 ms, and normalized to the maximum voluntary contraction (MVC) for the muscles being investigated. EMG data from the four muscles and number of pull-ups performed were analyzed using paired two tailed t-tests for Grip and No Grip conditions for each muscle and for the number of pull-ups performed.
Results. There was a significant decrease (p = 0.035) in EMG activation of the wrist extensors with grips (102.6 ± 65.5% MVC) compared to no grips (89.5 ± 49.2% MVC). No change was noted in EMG activation during pull-ups of the infraspinatus, latissimus dorsi, wrist flexors, or in the number of pull-ups to failure.
Conclusion. Wrist straps may be effective at decreasing the demand of the wrist extensors during pull-ups. This may be beneficial for those strength-training participants recovering from lateral epicondylitis who wish to perform pulling exercises and need to unload the wrist extensors. Furthermore, strength-training participants may be able to more effectively recruit larger muscle groups in pulling exercises as smaller muscle groups may be a limiting component when performing pulling exercises.
lateral epicondylitis, latissimus dorsi, infraspinatus, wrist straps
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