The influence of muscle temperature (Tm) on maximal muscle strength, power output, jumping, and sprinting performance was evaluated in four male subjects. In one of the subjects the electromyogram (EMG) was recorded from M. vastus lateralis, M. biceps femoris, and M. semitendinosus. Tm ranged from 30.0 degrees C to 39 degrees C. Maximal dynamic strength, power output, jumping, and sprinting performance were positively related to Tm. The changes were in the same order of magnitude for all these parameters (4-6% x degrees C-1) Maximal isometric strength decreased by 2% x degrees C-1 with decreasing Tm. The force-velocity relationship was shifted to the left at subnormal Tm. Thus in short term exercises, such as jumping and sprinting, performance is reduced at low Tm and enhanced at Tm above normal, primarily as a result of a variation in maximal dynamic strength.