A new approach to the role of antagonist muscle contraction synergism in plyometric training

Authors: Nicolae Neagu, Alexandra-Camelia Gliga, Tiberiu Bățagă


Department of Functional and Complementary Sciences, University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Science and Technology of Târgu Mureș, Romania


Plyometric training is a training method dedicated specifically to high performance athletes, involving a general effort of psycho-physical commitment, with explosive movements being executed or repeated at very short time intervals. The main goal of plyometric training, through its systematic organization, is the induction, over time, of structural and functional changes in the muscle groups of interest, with optimizing influences on individual sports performance, especially from a topokinetic perspective.

The primary requirement in plyometric training is that the time parameter between two consecutive executions must be permanently measured and controlled by the coach, with an aim for the involved duration defined as the latency time to achieve an ideal of zero seconds.

The defining feature of this training, given by an extremely short temporal relation between an overcoming movement phase (e.g. upward jump, push, extension) and a yielding movement phase (e.g. damping, flexion), implies that the duration of the two phases is of the order of fractions (tenths or hundredths) of a second. The ideal minimal pursued time is “zero” seconds, the muscle contractions in the two phases usually having the same direction but opposite senses.

Plyometric training does not specifically require the development of muscle mass or volume (muscle hypertrophy), but the development of an extremely powerful and rapid explosive force, generated through the contribution of a minimum body muscle mass and maximum physical and mental commitment from an athlete.

Key words: plyometric training; vectorial magnitudes; muscle synergism; eccentric workout


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