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Achilles tendon and triceps surae muscle properties in athletes.

Authors
  • Sukanen, Maria1
  • Khair, Ra'ad M2
  • Ihalainen, Johanna K2
  • Laatikainen-Raussi, Iida2
  • Eon, Pauline3
  • Nordez, Antoine3, 4
  • Finni, Taija2
  • 1 Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland. [email protected]. , (Finland)
  • 2 Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland. , (Finland)
  • 3 Nantes Université, Movement-Interactions-Performance, MIP, UR 4334, F-44000, Nantes, France. , (France)
  • 4 Institut Universitaire de France, Paris, France. , (France)
Type
Published Article
Journal
European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Feb 01, 2024
Volume
124
Issue
2
Pages
633–647
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s00421-023-05348-4
PMID: 37950761
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate internal Achilles tendon (AT) displacement, AT shear wave velocity (SWV), and triceps surae (TS) muscle shear modulus in athletes. Internal AT displacement was assessed using ultrasound during isometric contraction. Shear wave elastography was used to assess AT SWV (m × s-1) at rest and TS muscle shear modulus (kPa) during passive ankle dorsiflexion. A total of 131 athletes participated in this study. Athletes who had not exercised within two days had greater AT non-uniformity and mean anterior tendon displacement, and lower SWV at the proximal AT measurement site (mean difference [95% CI]: 1.8 mm [0.6-2.9], p = 0.003; 1.6 mm [0.2-2.9], p = 0.021; - 0.9 m × s-1 [- 1.6 to - 0.2], p = 0.014, respectively). Male basketball players had a lower mean AT displacement compared to gymnasts (- 3.7 mm [- 6.9 to - 0.5], p = 0.042), with the difference localised in the anterior half of the tendon (- 5.1 mm [- 9.0 to - 1.1], p = 0.022). Male gymnasts had a smaller absolute difference in medial gastrocnemius-minus-soleus shear modulus than basketball players (59.6 kPa [29.0-90.2], p < 0.001) and track and field athletes (52.7 kPa [19.2-86.3], p = 0.004). Intraclass correlation coefficients of measurements ranged from 0.720 to 0.937 for internal AT displacement, from 0.696 to 0.936 for AT SWE, and from 0.570 to 0.890 for TS muscles. This study provides a reliability assessment of muscle and tendon SWV. The relative differences in passive TS muscle shear modulus suggest sport-specific adaptation. Importantly, in healthy individuals, lower AT displacement after exercise may reflect the time required for tendon recovery. © 2023. The Author(s).

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