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Open AccessArticle

The Effect of Mental Fatigue on Neuromuscular Function is Similar in Young and Older Women

Department of Human Physiology, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97401, USA
School of Kinesiology, Western University, London, ON N6A 3K7, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Brain Sci. 2020, 10(4), 191;
Received: 12 March 2020 / Revised: 19 March 2020 / Accepted: 23 March 2020 / Published: 25 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Collection Collection on Systems Neuroscience)
The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of a mentally fatiguing task on neuromuscular function in young and older women. Neuromuscular measures were obtained prior to and following 20 minutes of a mentally fatiguing task. Maximal force output significantly decreased after the mental fatigue task (p = 0.02) and this was not different between age groups (p = 0.32). Increases in cortical silent period duration approached significance in both young and older groups (p = 0.06), suggesting that mental fatigue may cause increased cortical inhibition. Measures of peripheral neuromuscular function (contractile properties of the muscle, M-wave) did not change (p 0.09), suggesting that changes in force production with mental fatigue are more likely due to supraspinal than peripheral mechanisms. These findings provide further evidence of an interaction between mental fatigue and physical function.
Keywords: mental fatigue; neuromuscular function; aging mental fatigue; neuromuscular function; aging
MDPI and ACS Style

Morris, A.J.; Christie, A.D. The Effect of Mental Fatigue on Neuromuscular Function is Similar in Young and Older Women. Brain Sci. 2020, 10, 191.

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