Effects of Tongue Strength Training and Detraining on Tongue Pressures in Healthy Adults

Dysphagia. 2015 Jun;30(3):315-20. doi: 10.1007/s00455-015-9601-x. Epub 2015 Apr 4.


This study examined the effect of tongue strengthening training and long-term detraining on tongue tip pressure, tongue base pressure, and tongue pressure during effortful swallowing. Ten young healthy volunteers (21-35 years) were participated in this study. Participants received 8-week tongue strengthening exercise 3 days a week with each session lasting 30 min. Measurement of tongue pressure and tongue strengthening exercise were administrated using Iowa Oral Performance Instrument (IOPI). Training intensity was applied at 60 and 80% of maximal tongue pressure for the first week and the remainder, respectively. Following completion of 8-week training, 28 weeks of detraining period was continued. Training increased tongue tip pressure, tongue base pressure, and tongue pressure during effortful swallowing above pre-training values (p < 0.05). After 28-week detraining, all tongue variables were significantly lower than after 8-week training (p < 0.05) but remained significantly higher than pre-training levels (p < 0.05). These findings demonstrate that high-intensity tongue strengthening exercise can improve tongue pressures. However, training effects were diminished gradually during detraining period. Thus, maintenance programs after strengthening exercise would be required for prolonging training effects.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Exercise
  • Female
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength*
  • Pressure
  • Tongue / physiology*
  • Young Adult