The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of quiet inspiration versus slow expiration on sternocleidomastoid (SCM) and abdominal muscle activity during abdominal curl-up in healthy subjects. Twelve healthy subjects participated in this study. Surface electromyography (EMG) was used to collect activity of bilateral SCM, rectus abdominis (RA), external oblique (EO), and transversus abdominis/internal oblique (TrA/IO) muscles. A paired t-test was used to determine significant differences in the bilateral SCM, RF, EO, and TrA/IO muscles between abdominal curl-up with quiet inspiration and slow expiration. There were significantly lower EMG activity of both SCMs and greater EMG activity of both IOs during abdominal curl-up with slow expiration, compared with the EMG activity of both SCMs and IOs during abdominal curl-up with quiet inspiration (p<.05). The results of this study suggest that slow expiration would be recommended during abdominal curl-up for reduced SCM activation and selective activation of TrA/IO in healthy subjects compared with those in abdominal curl up with quiet inspiration.
Keywords: Breathing pattern; EMG; Stabilization exercise.
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