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J Athl Train. 1998 Jul-Sep; 33(3): 211–215.
PMCID: PMC1320425

Temperature Changes in Deep Muscles of Humans During Upper and Lower Extremity Exercise

Valerie J. Wirth, MEd, ATC,* Bonnie L. Van Lunen, PhD, ATC,|| Dilaawar Mistry, MD, MS, ATC, Ethan Saliba, PhD, ATC, PT, SCS, and Frank C. McCue, III, MD§

Abstract

Objective:

To examine the effect of 15 minutes of upper and lower extremity exercise on raising intramuscular temperature in the triceps surae to 39 ° C to 45 ° C (the therapeutic range).

Design and Setting:

Intramuscular temperature was measured 5 cm deep in the triceps surae using a 23-gauge thermistor needle microprobe connected to a monitor. Each subject was tested under 3 conditions: 15 minutes of rest, 15 minutes of jogging on a treadmill, and 15 minutes of handpedaling an upper-body ergometer. Exercise bouts were performed at 70% of each subject's maximum heart rate.

Subjects:

Six males, either sedentary or recreational athletes (age = 21.3 ± 2.9 years; ht = 176.8 ± 6.0 cm; wt = 72.7 ± 11.6 kg; resting heart rate = 57.8 ± 6.74 bpm; target heart rate = 156.5 ± 3.0 bpm), volunteered to participate in this experiment.

Measurements:

Intramuscular temperature was measured at a depth of 5 cm before and after each test condition.

Results:

Data analyses consisted of analyses of variance with repeated measures and a Tukey post hoc test (P < .05). The results showed a significant temperature increase over baseline after exercise on the treadmill (2.2 ° C ± 0.63 ° C); however, it did not yield temperature increases ≥ 39 ° C. No significant temperature change occurred after exercise on the upper-body ergometer (-0.45 ° C ± 0.80 ° C).

Conclusions:

Active exercise increased intramuscular temperature in working muscles but did not affect intramuscular temperature in nonworking muscles. In addition, 15 minutes of jogging on a treadmill at 70% of maximum heart rate was not sufficient to raise intramuscular temperature to 39 ° C to 45 ° C.

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Selected References

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