Photobiomodulation Therapy on Physiological and Performance Parameters During Running Tests: Dose-Response Effects

J Strength Cond Res. 2018 Oct;32(10):2807-2815. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000002488.


Dellagrana, RA, Rossato, M, Sakugawa, RL, Baroni, BM, and Diefenthaeler, F. Photobiomodulation therapy on physiological and performance parameters during running tests: Dose-response effects. J Strength Cond Res 32(10): 2807-2815, 2018-This study was aimed at verifying effects of photobiomodulation therapy (PBMT) with different energy doses (15, 30, and 60 J per site) on physiological and performance parameters during running tests. Fifteen male recreational runners participated in a crossover, randomized, double-blind, and placebo-controlled trial. They performed testing protocol in 5 sessions with different treatments: control, placebo, and PBMT with 15, 30, or 60 J per site (14 sites in each lower limb). Physiological and performance variables were assessed during submaximal (at 8 and 9 km·h) and maximal running tests. Photobiomodulation therapy with 30 J significantly improved running economy (RE) at 8 and 9 km·h (3.01%, p=0.008 and 3.03%, p=0.009, respectively), rate of perceived exertion (RPE) at 8 km/h21 (7.86%, p=0.033), velocity at V[Combining Dot Above]O2max (3.07%, p= 0.029), peak of velocity (PV) (1.49%, p=0.035), and total time to exhaustion (TTE) (3.41%, p=0.036) compared with placebo. Photobiomodulation therapy with 15 J improved running economy at 9 km/h21 (2.98%, p=0.025), rate of perceived exertion at 8 km/h21 (4.80%, p=0.010), PV (1.33%, p=0.008), total time to exhaustion (3.06%, p=0.008), and total distance (4.01%, p=0.011) compared with the placebo; whereas PBMT with 60 J only increased RE at 9 km/h21 (3.87%, p=0.024) compared with placebo. All PBMT doses positively affected physiological and/or performance parameters; however, magnitude-based inference reported that PBMT applied with 30 J led to more beneficial effects than 15 and 60 J.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Humans
  • Lactic Acid / blood
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*
  • Lower Extremity
  • Male
  • Muscle Fatigue
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Running / physiology*
  • Young Adult


  • Lactic Acid