Authors: Jack Clarke, Lynn Allen
Department of Sport and Health Sciences, Athlone Institute of Technology, Westmeath, Ireland
An Luslann, Kylebroughlan, Moycullen,
Co. Galway, H91 TXV5, Ireland.
Mr. Jack Clarke is a recent graduate of Athletic and Rehabilitation Therapy at Athlone Institute of Technology, Ireland. He is currently furthering his studies at Loughborough University, United Kingdom. His professional interests circulate around athletic performance development, strength and conditioning, and musculoskeletal therapeutic interventions particularly in track and field events.
Ms. Lynn Allen is a Certified Athletic Therapist currently in the role of lecturer and course coordinator of Athletic and Rehabilitation Therapy at Athlone Institute of Technology, Ireland. Her professional interests include athletic therapy clinical education, biopsychosocial framework for chronic pain and athletic injuries, clinical education curriculums, and musculoskeletal therapeutic interventions.
The effects of muscle energy techniques on latent trigger points of the gastrocnemius muscle
Purpose: The purpose of this study is to examine the effectiveness of muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation as a treatment method for latent trigger points within the gastrocnemius muscle. This study also compares the muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation to ischemic compression to determine the most effective latent trigger point treatment. The outcome aim is to understand the acute and mid-term effects of the treatment and how the results may apply to an athletic therapy population.
Methods: 40 participants (24 male and 16 female) were randomly assigned to two treatment groups that took part in three treatment sessions over the course of 10 days. Group A took part in a muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation protocol and Group B took part in an ischemic compression protocol.
Results: There was a statistically significant treatment effect in both groups for both the reduction of latent trigger point numbers (p<.0005) and increasing ankle dorsiflexion range of motion (p<.0005). The muscle energy technique treatment was more effective than the ischemic compression treatment in latent trigger point reduction and increasing range of motion (p=0.26, p=0.58 respectively).
Conclusions: This study concludes that both muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation and ischemic compression effectively treat latent trigger points in the gastrocnemius following acute and mid-term treatment. Muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation is more effective than ischemic compression indicating that muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation is the most effective form of treatment for latent trigger points found in the gastrocnemius.
Applications in Sport: Athletic therapists and sport related clinicians are recommended to use muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation in situations where latent trigger points are found within the gastrocnemius.Muscle energy technique post isometric relaxation is a suitable treatment method to use in a variety of settings that an athletic therapist or clinician may be in, such as pre-game and post-game therapy, on-field therapy, and clinical therapy(more…)