Background and objective: This study investigated whether equine riding affects static or dynamic mechanical contractions on the thighs and trunk muscles in inactive women.
Methods: Participants consisted of 30 women with a mean (SD) age of 21.06 (0.44) years. They were randomly allotted as follows: equine group (EQG, n= 15) and control group (CON, n= 15). Two types of muscle contraction properties in their thighs and trunk were measured through a tensiomyography (static muscle tester) and an isokinetic device (dynamic muscle tester), respectively. Using the body weights of EQG and CON as covariates, a 2-way between-groups multivariate analysis of covariance was used to investigate group differences in the mechanical quantification of the thighs and trunk.
Results: The effectiveness of 8 weeks of equine riding was hardly observed in a static muscle test, whereas in the dynamic muscle test, the dominant and non-dominant hip extensor/flexor, the dominant hip abductor/adductor, and trunk extensor in the EQG showed a significant increase, compared to no changes in the CON.
Conclusions: This study did not find any particular differences in a static muscle test in inactive women, but showed improvements in the dynamic mechanical properties of the thighs and trunk, which are major muscle groups related to spinal alignment.
Keywords: Equine exercise; dynamic muscle contraction; static muscle contraction; tensiomyography.