Acute Neuromuscular Response to Team Sports-Specific Running, Resistance, and Concurrent Training: A Crossover Study

Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2022 Mar 1;54(3):456-465. doi: 10.1249/MSS.0000000000002804.


Purpose: This study aimed to examine the changes in muscle contractile function, voluntary activation, and muscle damage after lower limb resistance training (RT), intermittent sprint exercise, and concurrent training (CT).

Methods: Ten male, recreational team sport athletes with a history of RT participated in a randomized crossover study involving an intermittent sprint protocol (ISP), lower limb RT, and CT (ISP and RT separated by 1 h). Before (PRE), immediately after (POST), 24 h and 48 h after each exercise condition, quadriceps muscle activation, voluntary activation, muscle contractile function (evoked twitch responses), creatine kinase, muscle soreness, and Profile of Mood States (POMS)-fatigue were recorded.

Results: Quadriceps contractile function was hampered in all conditions, with a significantly greater decline observed POST RT (58.4% ± 18.0%) and CT (54.8% ± 8.6%) compared with ISP (35.9% ± 10.7%, P < 0.05), recovering at 48 h after all exercise conditions. POMS-fatigue ratings increased at POST in all conditions with CT and ISP eliciting the greatest increase, returning to baseline 48 h after all exercise conditions. Quadriceps muscle soreness remained elevated from PRE at 48 h after all exercise conditions. No changes across time were observed for voluntary activation and quadriceps surface EMG amplitude after any exercise condition. The volume and load lifted in the RT session was unaffected by previous intermittent exercise (ISP) in CT.

Conclusions: RT impairs contractile function, which is not exacerbated when performed 1 h after the ISP. Contractile function after all exercise conditions displayed the same recovery profile (48 h) despite the postexercise decrement being smaller after the ISP compared with RT and CT. Previous intermittent sprint exercise does not negatively affect the volume of exercise performed in a lower limb RT session.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Electromyography
  • Humans
  • Lower Extremity / physiology*
  • Male
  • Quadriceps Muscle / physiology*
  • Resistance Training / methods*
  • Running / physiology*
  • Team Sports*
  • Young Adult