Exercise-induced muscle damage following dance and sprint specific exercise in females

Meghan Brown, Glyn Howatson, Karen Keane, Emma Stevenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


AIM - There is a paucity of studies investigating exercise-induced muscle damage (EIMD) in females and only one in response to dance-type exercise. This study sought to firstly elucidate the physiological profile of EIMD following a dance-specific protocol, and second to compare the magnitude of damage to that experienced following a sport-specific protocol in physically active females. METHODS - Twenty-nine female recreational dancers (19 ± 1 years) were recruited. Participants completed either a dance-specific protocol (DPFT; n=15) or sport-specific repeated sprint protocol (SSRS; n=14). Muscle soreness, limb girths, creatine kinase (CK), countermovement jump height (CMJ), reactive strength index (RSI), maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) and 30 m sprint time were recorded pre, 0-, 24-, 48-, and 72 h post exercise. RESULTS - The DPFT induced muscle damage, with significant time effects for all variables except RSI. However the response was acute, and muscle function returned to near-baseline levels by 48 h. Although no group differences existed, there were significant interaction effects; notably in CMJ (P=0.038) where the decline at 0 h (-6.9%) was smaller and recovery was greater at 72 h (which exceeded pre-exercise levels by 3.7%) post DPFT compared to post SSRS. CONCLUSION - The results offer new information showing that dance-specific activity results in EIMD in females. In addition, the magnitude of damage was similar to repeated sprint exercise and demonstrated that, in this population, recovery from these strenuous activities takes several days. These data have important implications for understanding the consequences of dance activity and other strenuous exercise in females.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1376-1383
JournalThe Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness
Issue number11
Early online date29 May 2015
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016


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