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Damage to Skeletal Muscle from Eccentric Exercise

Proske, Uwe; Allen, Trevor J.

Exercise and Sport Sciences Reviews: April 2005 - Volume 33 - Issue 2 - p 98-104

Evidence is provided for a mechanical event as the first step in the process leading to muscle damage after a series of eccentric contractions. Aspects discussed include the decline in active tension, increase in passive tension, shift in length–tension relation, soreness, swelling, and disturbed proprioception.

Changes in properties of skeletal muscle are described that are the result of damage to muscle fibers from eccentric contractions.

Department of Physiology, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Address for correspondence: Uwe Proske, Department of Physiology, PO Box 13F, Monash University VIC 3800, Australia (E-mail:

Accepted for publication: November 11, 2004.

©2005 The American College of Sports Medicine