Revving-up your muscles with Myovolt.

Revving-up your muscles with Myovolt.

The acute effect of direct vibration on muscular power performance in master athletes.

International Journal Sports Medicine 2016; 37(02): 144-148
Research Findings.

This study demonstrated the effectiveness of Myovolt to increase muscular power output in older athletes making it an ideal warm-up modality to activate muscles prior to exercise.

As the body ages, muscle strength and particularly muscle power starts to decline and studies have shown that muscle atrophy begins as early as the age of 25, accelerating after this point.

The reduction in muscle mass is mainly due to a loss in the number of muscle fibres, accompanied by a reduction in the size of these fibres. This particularly affects the type 2 (fast-twitch) muscle fibres responsible for quick powerful movements such as sprinting and weightlifting.  This atrophy process is thought to be caused by a progressive loss of nerve supply to the muscle fibres together with a general decline in physical activity as people age (ie use it or lose it).

Progressive resistance training and plyometric exercises are typically used to counteract age-related decline in muscle strength and power. Vibration training may offer a complementary modality as it has been shown to enhance muscle performance in studies of both young and older athletes. Vibration as an acute pre-exercise treatment to stimulate specific muscles prior to resistance training has been shown to increase muscle force and power output.

Many studies have focussed on lower body performance enhancement effects by applying vibration to muscles indirectly via vibration platforms (whole body vibration). The limitation of applying indirect vibration to the body is that it is difficult to isolate particular muscle groups making it hard to target treatment. Also, the transmission of vibration to the area of interest is attenuated as it propagates through other tissues, muscles, joints, and bones reducing the effectiveness at the target site.

This clinical study with Myovolt was carried out in the Department of Sport and Exercise Science at Massey University, New Zealand. The study examined the acute effect of direct Focal Vibration on muscular power output in master athletes by applying Myovolt to bicep muscles.

The objective was to determine if vibration treatment could enhance the upper body power output for older athletes and be used as an effective method to improve muscle performance prior to exercise.

Power tests are an important measure of fitness or performance adaptation over time and are used to evaluate the neuromuscular and energy transfer properties of muscles. Power testing is an important index of performance for sports that require explosive energy for example sprinting, weightlifting, football, soccer, basketball and tennis.  


Ten healthy male national representative field-hockey players (average age 44 years) were randomly assigned to receive 10 minutes of pulsing sinusoidal vibration with Myovolt or no vibration (control) to the right and left biceps brachii. Muscular power testing was carried out pre and post vibration treatment by performing standing dumbbell bicep curl repetitions. Mechanical Peak Power and Mean Concentric Power during the concentric phase of the bicep curl were measured pre and post treatment and compared to the control.

Results showed significant increases in peak power (moderate effect size) and mean concentric power (large effect size) for those receiving vibration treatment with Myovolt compared to the control. This demonstrated the effectiveness of direct vibration to elicit power adaptions in muscles.

One possible mechanism for vibration is that it stimulates the stretch reflex response causing the muscle to contract faster and more forcefully. To investigate this, muscle activity of the right and left biceps brachii was also measured using surface electromyography (EMG) during the concentric phase of the biceps curl. 

However, the improvements found in power output did not produce an associated increase in EMG activity indicating that other neuromuscular or circulatory mechanisms are responsible for the performance enhancement found.

The study demonstrated the practical application of Myovolt to enhance muscular power in older athletes. Being easy to use, portable and with the ability to localise treatment to specific muscles groups, Myovolt is therefore ideal as a warm-up tool immediately prior to exercise or training.