Effect of Performance Speed on Trunk Movement Control During the Curl-Up Exercise

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Trunk exercise speed has significant effects on neuro-mechanical demands; however, the influence of a variety of exercise speeds on motor control of the trunk displacement remains unknown. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of performance speed on trunk motion control during the curl-up exercise by analyzing the kinematic variance about the sagittal trajectory. Seventeen subjects volunteered to perform curl-ups at different cadences controlled by a metronome. Standard deviation (SD) and range (RG) of shoulder girdle medial-lateral displacement (SGML) and detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA) of SGML were calculated to examine linear variability and long range autocorrelation of medial-lateral upper trunk displacements, respectively. In addition, SD, RG and DFA of centre of pressure medial-lateral displacement (COPML) were performed to analyze the behavior of the motor system while controlling trunk displacement. Although SD and RG of COPML increased as speed increased, the curl-up cadence did not have significant effects on SD and RG of SGML. These results suggest that although high speed curl-ups challenged participants’ ability to carry out medial-lateral adjustments, an increase of performance speed did not modify the linear variability about the sagittal trajectory. Regarding DFA, the scaling exponent α of SGML and COPML was higher for the fastest movements, mainly in long term fluctuations. Therefore, to maintain the target trajectory, participants used different strategies depending on performance speed. This is to say, there were less trajectory changes when participants performed the fastest exercises.

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