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Neck exercises compared to muscle activation during aerial combat maneuvers

Netto, Kevin J., Burnett, Angus F. and Coleman, Jemma L. 2007, Neck exercises compared to muscle activation during aerial combat maneuvers, Aviation, space and environmental medicine, vol. 78, no. 5, pp. 478-484.

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Title Neck exercises compared to muscle activation during aerial combat maneuvers
Author(s) Netto, Kevin J.
Burnett, Angus F.
Coleman, Jemma L.
Journal name Aviation, space and environmental medicine
Volume number 78
Issue number 5
Start page 478
End page 484
Publisher Aerospace Medical Association
Place of publication Alexandria, Va.
Publication date 2007-05
ISSN 0095-6562
Keyword(s) electromyography
neck
cervical
hypergravity
exercise
Summary Introduction: Performing specific neck strengthening exercises has been proposed to decrease the incidence of neck injury and pain in high performance combat pilots. However, there is little known about these exercises in comparison to the demands on the neck musculature in flight.

Methods: Eight male non-pilots performed specific neck exercises using two different modalities (elastic band and resistance machine) at six different intensities in flexion, extension, and lateral bending. Six Royal Australian Air Force Hawk pilots flew a sortie that included combinations of three +Gz levels and four head positions. Surface electromyography (EMG) from selected neck and shoulder muscles was recorded in both activities.

Results: Muscle activation levels recorded during the three elastic band exercises were similar to in-flight EMG collected at +1 Gz (15% MVIC). EMG levels elicited during the 50% resistance machine exercises were between the +3 Gz (9-40% MVIC) and +5 Gz (16-53% MVIC) ranges of muscle activations in most muscles. EMG recorded during 70% and 90% resistance machine exercises were generally higher than in-flight EMG at +5 Gz.

Discussion: Elastic band exercises could possibly be useful to pilots who fly low +Gz missions while 50% resistance machine mimicked neck loads experienced by combat pilots flying high +Gz ACM. The 70% and 90% resistance machine intensities are known to optimize maximal strength but should be administered with care because of the unknown spinal loads and diminished muscle force generating capacity after exercise.
Language eng
Field of Research 110601 Biomechanics
Socio Economic Objective 970109 Expanding Knowledge in Engineering
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2007, Aerospace Medical Association
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30020417

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.