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Functional Performance Following an Ice Bag Application to the Hamstrings

Fischer, Jennifer1,2; Van Lunen, Bonnie L1,2; Branch, J David1; Pirone, Jamie L1

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: January 2009 - Volume 23 - Issue 1 - p 44-50
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181839e97
Original Research

Fischer, J, Van Lunen, BL, Branch, JD, and Pirone, JL. Functional performance following an ice bag application to the hamstrings. J Strength Cond Res 23(1): 44-50, 2009-This study examined the immediate and short-term (20 minute) effects of 3- and 10-minute ice bag applications to the hamstrings on functional performance as measured by the cocontraction test, shuttle run, and single-leg vertical jump. Forty-two (25 women, 17 men) recreational or collegiate athletes who were free of injury in the lower extremity 6 months before testing and who did not suffer from allergy to cryotherapy were included. Time to completion was measured in seconds for the cocontraction and the shuttle run test. Single-leg vertical jump was measured on the Vertec (Sports Imports, Columbus, Ohio) in centimeters. The 10-minute ice bag application reduced immediate postapplication vertical jump performance and increased immediate post and 20-minute post shuttle run time (p ≤ 0.05). A decrease in cocontraction time was observed at 20 minutes post compared with preapplication during the control condition in which no ice bag was applied. Power and functional performance are affected by short-term cryotherapy application. Power and functional performance was impaired immediately and 20 minutes after 10-minute ice bag application to the hamstrings, whereas a shorter duration of ice application had no effect on these tasks.

1Department of Exercise Science, Sport, Physical Education, and Recreation and 2Sports Medicine Research Laboratory, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia

Address correspondence to Bonnie L. Van Lunen,

© 2009 National Strength and Conditioning Association