Myoelectric signal versus force relationship in different human muscles

J Appl Physiol Respir Environ Exerc Physiol. 1983 Jun;54(6):1653-9. doi: 10.1152/jappl.1983.54.6.1653.


An analytic study was initiated to investigate whether the normalized surface myoelectric signal vs. normalized force relationship varies in different human muscles and whether it is dependent on training level and rate of force production. The data were obtained from experiments that involved the biceps, deltoid, and first dorsal interosseous of three pianists, four long-distance swimmers, three power lifters, and six normal subjects. The elite performers (among the world's best) were chosen because they exhibited varying degrees of fine motor control, endurance training, and power training in different muscles. Approximately 200 isometric linearly force-varying contractions peaking at 80% of the maximal voluntary contraction level were processed. The results indicated that the myoelectric signal-force relationship was primarily determined by the muscle under investigation and was generally independent of the subject group and the force rate. Whereas this relationship was quasilinear for the first dorsal interosseous, it was nonlinear for the biceps and deltoid. Several possible physiological causes of the observed behavior of the myoelectric signal-force relationship are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Electrophysiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Muscles / physiology*
  • Physical Education and Training
  • Physical Endurance
  • Swimming
  • Weight Lifting