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Open AccessArticle

Training-Induced Acute Neuromuscular Responses to Military Specific Test during a Six-Month Military Operation

1
Training Division, Defence Command, P.O. Box 919, 00131 Helsinki, Finland
2
Active Life Lab, South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences, P.O. Box 68, 50101 Mikkeli, Finland
3
Department of Military Pedagogy and Leadership, National Defence University, P.O. Box 7, 00861 Helsinki, Finland
4
Neuromuscular Research Center, Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, P.O. Box 35 (VIV), 40014 Jyväskylä, Finland
5
Human Performance Division, Finnish Defence Research Agency, P.O. Box 5, 04401 Järvenpää, Finland
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UKK Institute for Health Promotion Research, P.O. Box 30, 33501 Tampere, Finland
7
Faculty of Social Sciences (Health Sciences), Tampere University, P.O. Box 100, 33014 Tampere, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(1), 215; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010215
Received: 10 November 2020 / Revised: 21 December 2020 / Accepted: 25 December 2020 / Published: 30 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Testing and Physical Conditioning for Tactical Populations)
Limited data are available regarding strength and endurance training adaptations to occupational physical performance during deployment. This study assessed acute training-induced changes in neuromuscular (electromyography; EMG) and metabolic (blood lactate, BLa) responses during a high-intensity military simulation test (MST), performed in the beginning (PRE) and at the end (POST) of a six-month crisis-management operation. MST time shortened (145 ± 21 vs. 129 ± 16 s, −10 ± 7%, p < 0.001) during the operation. Normalized muscle activity increased from PRE to POST in the hamstring muscles by 87 ± 146% (116 ± 52 vs. 195 ± 139%EMGMVC, p < 0.001) and in the quadriceps by 54 ± 81% (26 ± 8 vs. 40 ± 20%EMGMVC, p < 0.001). In addition, higher acute BLa values were measured after MST during POST. Changes in BLa and EMG suggested an increased neural input and metabolic rate during POST MST, likely leading to faster performance times at the end of the operation. High EMG values throughout the different phases of MST suggested that despite the anaerobic nature of the test, the soldiers were able to maintain their voluntary muscle activation level until the end of the test. This indicates only limited neural fatigue during the two-minute high-intensity military specific performance. While learning effect may explain some part of the improvement in the MST performance times, combined strength and endurance training three times per week may improve neuromuscular performance in occupationally relevant tasks. View Full-Text
Keywords: readiness; physical fitness; soldier; occupational performance; electromyography readiness; physical fitness; soldier; occupational performance; electromyography
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MDPI and ACS Style

Pihlainen, K.; Pesola, A.J; Helén, J.; Häkkinen, K.; Finni, T.; Ojanen, T.; Vaara, J.P.; Santtila, M.; Raitanen, J.; Kyröläinen, H. Training-Induced Acute Neuromuscular Responses to Military Specific Test during a Six-Month Military Operation. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 215. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010215

AMA Style

Pihlainen K, Pesola AJ, Helén J, Häkkinen K, Finni T, Ojanen T, Vaara JP, Santtila M, Raitanen J, Kyröläinen H. Training-Induced Acute Neuromuscular Responses to Military Specific Test during a Six-Month Military Operation. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(1):215. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010215

Chicago/Turabian Style

Pihlainen, Kai; Pesola, Arto J; Helén, Joonas; Häkkinen, Keijo; Finni, Taija; Ojanen, Tommi; Vaara, Jani P.; Santtila, Matti; Raitanen, Jani; Kyröläinen, Heikki. 2021. "Training-Induced Acute Neuromuscular Responses to Military Specific Test during a Six-Month Military Operation" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 18, no. 1: 215. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010215

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