March 2017

Effects of Karate Fights on Achilles Tendon Stiffness Measured by Myotonometry

Authors: B.Pożarowszczyk, W.Pawlaczyk, M.Smoter, A.Zarzycki, D.Mroczek, M.Kumorek, K.Witkowski, A.Kawczynski

Affiliations: University School of Physical Education, Department of Paralympics Sports, Wrocław, Poland

Journal: Journal of Human Kinetics - March 2017, Volume 56, Pages 93-97 (DOI: 10.1515/hukin-2017-0026)

The aim of the study was to investigate the influence of karate fights on Achilles tendon stiffness in karate competitors. Eleven male karate fighters participated in the present study. A handheld MyotonPRO device (MyotonPRO, Myoton Ltd, Estonia) was applied to measure Achilles tendon stiffness in karate fighters. The Achilles tendon was tested 5 cm above the tuber calcanei. Stiffness measurements were performed before and after eight sparring fights. Each fight lasted 2 min and was separated by a 2 min rest period. Achilles tendon stiffness for the dominant leg increased significantly from before fights (751.57 ± 123.493 N/m) to immediately after fights (809.43 ± 160.425 N/m) (p = 0.012). Presented results should be used by strength and conditioning coaches in training programs as a way to decrease the risk of injury.

This study demonstrated that eight 2 min karate fights increased AT stiffness in the dominant leg. The present study was the first to investigate changes in AT stiffness as the effect of karate fights.