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Assessment of the Effectiveness of Nontransdermal Energy Patches on Muscle Endurance and Power

Jacobson, Bert H1; Smith, Doug B1; Stemm, John D2; Warren, Aric J1; O'Brien, Matt S1; Glass, Rob G2

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: May 2008 - Volume 22 - Issue 3 - pp 869-873
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31816a83b1
Original Research

Claims of recently developed energy patches suggest that organic nanoscale biomolecular “antennas” produced by L and D-stereoisomers resonate at frequencies in unison with molecules in the cells inducing electron flow to assists in recruiting calcium ions, allowing greater muscle fiber recruitment during muscle contraction. The purpose of the study was to assess the efficacy of energy patches in the performance of selected muscle power and endurance measures. After a 5-minute warm-up and stretch, 41 college varsity football players (age, 20.37 ± 1.24 years; height, 169.91 ± 7.44 cm; weight, 109.45 ± 19.85 kg) were pre-tested on 102-kg maximal bench press repetitions, standing vertical jump, grip strength, peak torque, torque to body weight, total work, average power, and average torque as measured by 50 repetitions of leg extensions at 180°·s−1. The following week, the players were randomly assigned the experimental or placebo patches. After placement of the patches, the participants again completed a 5-minute warm-up, followed by the identical pre-test protocol. Repeated-measures ANOVAs were used to compare resultant data. No significant group interaction effects were found between experimental and placebo patches for maximal bench press repetitions (p = 0.48), vertical jump distance (p = 0.39), grip strength (p = 0.29), total work (p = 0.26), torque to body weight (p = 0.05), average peak torque (p = 0.08), and average power (p = 0.05). A significant increase occurred in the experimental group for peak torque (p = 0.04). It was concluded that the energy patches significantly improved performance over placebo patches in one of the eight variables tested and registered near significance in two additional variables. However, inconsistency in overall results demands further studies to determine the reliability in improvement of performance in the presence of energy patches.

1Department of Health and Human Performance; 2Department of Athletics, School of Applied Health and Educational Psychology, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma

Address correspondence to Dr. Bert H. Jacobson, bert.jacobson@okstate.edu.

© 2008 National Strength and Conditioning Association