Influence of Nordic Walking Training on Muscle Strength and the Electromyographic Activity of the Lower Body in Women With Low Bone Mass

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Abstract

Introduction. Osteoporosis and osteopenia are related to changes in the quantity and quality of skeletal muscle and contribute to a decreased level of muscle strength. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of Nordic walking training on muscle strength and the electromyographic (EMG) activity of the lower body in women with low bone mass. Material and methods. The participants of the study were 27 women with low bone mass. The sample was randomly divided into two groups: a control group and an experimental group. Women from the experimental group participated in 12 weeks of regular Nordic walking training. Functional strength was assessed with a 30-second chair stand test. The EMG activities of the gluteus maximus (GMax), rectus femoris (RF), biceps femoris (BF), soleus (SOL), and lumbar (LB) muscles were measured using a surface electromyogram. Results. Nordic walking training induced a significant increase in the functional strength (p = 0.006) of the lower body and activity of GMax (p = 0.013) and a decrease in body mass (p = 0.006) in women with reduced bone mass. There was no statistically significant increase in the EMG activities of the RF, BF, SOL, or LB muscles. The study did not indicate any significant changes in functional muscle strength, the EMG activity of the lower body, or anthropometry in women from the control group. Conclusions. Nordic walking training induces positive changes in lower body strength and the electromyographic activity of the gluteus maximus as well as a decrease in body mass in women with low bone mass.

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