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Short-Term Effects of Anodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation on Endurance and Maximal Force Production: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

1
Department of Physical Education and Sport, Faculty of Sport Sciences, Catholic University of Murcia (UCAM), 30107 Murcia, Spain
2
Department of Physical Education, University of A Coruña, 15279 La Coruña, Spain
3
Department of Education, King Juan Carlos University, 28933 Madrid, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Clin. Med. 2019, 8(4), 536; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm8040536
Received: 22 March 2019 / Revised: 12 April 2019 / Accepted: 16 April 2019 / Published: 18 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Neuroscience)
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Abstract

The purpose of the present systematic review and meta-analysis was to explore the effects of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on endurance (i.e., time to task failure (TTF)) and maximal voluntary contraction (MVC). Furthermore, we aimed to analyze whether the duration of stimulation, the brain region targeted for stimulation, and the task performed could also influence motor performance. We performed a systematic literature review in the databases MEDLINE and Web of Science. The short-term effects of anodal tDCS and sham stimulation (placebo) were considered as experimental and control conditions, respectively. A total of 31 interventions were included (MVC = 13; TTF = 18). Analysis of the strength-related tDCS studies showed small improvements in the MVC (SMD = 0.19; 95% CI = −0.02, 0.41; p = 0.08). However, the results of the endurance-related interventions indicated a moderate effect on TTF performance (SMD = 0.26; 95% CI = 0.07, 0.45; p = 0.008). Furthermore, the sub-analysis showed that anodal tDCS over M1 and stimulation durations longer than 10 min produced the best results in terms of TTF performance enhancement. Additionally, the effects of anodal tDCS were larger during full body exercises (i.e., cycling) when compared to uniarticular tasks. In conclusion, the current meta-analysis indicated that anodal tDCS leads to small and moderate effects on MVC and TTF, respectively. View Full-Text
Keywords: Non-invasive brain stimulation; time to task failure; maximal voluntary contraction; primary motor cortex; prefrontal cortex Non-invasive brain stimulation; time to task failure; maximal voluntary contraction; primary motor cortex; prefrontal cortex
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Alix-Fages, C.; Romero-Arenas, S.; Castro-Alonso, M.; Colomer-Poveda, D.; Río-Rodriguez, D.; Jerez-Martínez, A.; Fernandez-del-Olmo, M.; Márquez, G. Short-Term Effects of Anodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation on Endurance and Maximal Force Production: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. J. Clin. Med. 2019, 8, 536.

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