Even though cycling’s physiological benefits are well known, its exact effect on the ‘rectus femoris’ muscle has been hard to pin down. Concentric cycling has now been directly compared with eccentric cycling by a sports scientist, and it’s been demonstrated that eccentric cycling is relatively more efficient by making use of neuromuscular activation as a primary indicator of performance.1✅ JOURNAL REFERENCE
Various workout activities are categorized according to how the muscles are worked while they are active. Take the bicep curl as an example. The bicep muscle is contracting when the dumbbell is curling towards you, which makes this a concentric action.
When the dumbbell is returned to the original position it requires the bicep to ‘uncurl’ or return to the normal length, which makes this an eccentric action. Researchers are forever trying to determine which of these types of activity provides the best output with regard to neuromuscular improvement.
The rectus femoris muscle’s unique neuromuscular activation was demonstrated while concentric cycling, as well as eccentric cycling when the pedal’s backward movement is resisted instead of being pushed down by the muscles contracting.
The rectus femoris muscle is a fleshy and long muscle that’s found in the thigh’s anterior compartment. Extending the leg at the joint of the knee and facilitating the hip joint’s flexing is its primary function. The rectus femoris is susceptible to injury, particularly while engaging in intense sports and exercise or following physical trauma.
The rectus femoris plays an important part in athletes’ sports performance as well as physical ability in older individuals, suggesting that it could be specially targeted for activities related to exercise.
An ergometer was made use of for quantitatively estimating how different types of muscles were involved. This a device that determines the energy expended while exercising. The pedals are automatically spinning backward with an eccentric cycling ergometer.
The root mean square of the surface electromyography signals was obtained from the 3 types of muscles, the distal and proximal regions of the biceps femoris, the vastus lateralis, and the rectus femoris. The electrical currents generated throughout muscular contractions are measured by the electromyography signal and are made use of for assessing different neuromuscular activity types.
A quantitative comparison was also made between concentric cycling and eccentric cycling. Even though prior studies indicate that eccentric exercise is more efficient and results in less fatigue compared to concentric exercise (walking down stairs is easier than walking up), there had been no accurate assessment of the exact effect on the rectus femoris.
Less effort is required to perform eccentric cycling exercise in comparison to concentric cycling exercise. Better neuromuscular activation of the recuts femoris can however be achieved while cycling eccentrically, which indicates that eccentric cycling exercise is an option for the improvement of rectus femoris muscle function.
The study results clearly showed that the root mean square-electromyography of the rectus femoris was greater while eccentric cycling compared to concentric cycling.
Eccentric cycling exercise could be helpful for athletic performance improvement and for the improvement of quality of life in older individuals, as well as for the prevention of severe damage caused by intense sport and exercise. Even though an eccentric cycling ergometer isn’t yet a piece of exercise equipment that’s routinely made use of, it could provide significant benefits, particularly during rehabilitation and training.