The Repeated-bout Effect: Influence on Biceps Brachii Oxygenation and Myoelectrical Activity

Document Type

Journal Article


American Physiology Society


Faculty of Computing, Health and Science


School of Exercise and Health Sciences / Centre for Exercise and Sports Science Research




Muthalib, M. , Lee, H. , Millet, G. , Ferrari, M., & Nosaka, K. (2011). The repeated-bout effect: Influence on biceps brachii oxygenation and myoelectrical activity. Journal of Applied Physiology, 110(5), 1390-1399. Available here


The repeated-bout effect: influence on biceps brachii oxygenation and myoelectrical activity. J Appl Physiol 110: 1390-1399, 2011. First published February 17, 2011; doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00191.2010.-This study investigated biceps brachii oxygenation and myoelectrical activity during and following maximal eccentric exercise to better understand the repeated-bout effect. Ten men performed two bouts of eccentric exercise (ECC1, ECC2), consisting of 10 sets of 6 maximal lengthening contractions of the elbow flexors separated by 4 wk. Tissue oxygenation index minimum amplitude (TOI(min)), mean and maximum total hemoglobin volume by near-infrared spectroscopy, torque, and surface electromyography root mean square (EMG(RMS)) during exercise were compared between ECC1 and ECC2. Changes in maximal voluntary isometric contraction (MVC) torque, range of motion, plasma creatine kinase activity, muscle soreness, TOImin, and EMG(RMS) during sustained (10-s) and 30-repeated isometric contraction tasks at 30% (same absolute force) and 100% MVC (same relative force) for 4 days postexercise were compared between ECC1 and ECC2. No significant differences between ECC1 and ECC2 were evident for changes in torque, TOI(min), mean total hemoglobin volume, maximum total hemoglobin volume, and EMG(RMS) during exercise. Smaller (P < 0.05) changes and faster recovery of muscle damage markers were evident following ECC2 than ECC1. During 30% MVC tasks, TOImin did not change, but EMGRMS increased 1-4 days following ECC1 and ECC2. During 100% MVC tasks, EMGRMS did not change, but torque and TOImin decreased 1-4 days following ECC1 and ECC2. TOImin during 100% MVC tasks and EMGRMS during 30% MVC tasks recovered faster (P < 0.05) following ECC2 than ECC1. We conclude that the repeated-bout effect cannot be explained by altered muscle activation or metabolic/hemodynamic changes, and the faster recovery in muscle oxygenation and activation was mainly due to faster recovery of force.



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