The reported data in the present study suggest that WBV training has a beneficial effect on vertical jump height compared with age- and skill-matched controls. These results are similar to previous short time period intervention studies (2,6,16,18), though they had differing intervention time periods and exposures. Issurin (5) suggested that these changes are because of a possible number of neuromuscular adaptations; excitation of the primary endings of the muscle spindles that stimulate increased discharge of α-motorneurons, and the activation of the Golgi tendon organs whose activation reduces inhibition of muscle action; the similarity of biological mechanisms and vibration training (2) or recruitment of high-threshold motor units (21). The present study suggests that limited exposure to WBV (2 × 5 min·wk−1) provides enough stimulation for adaptation to occur in the present population. The possible reasons for this are that although dancers carry out a lot of jumping as part of their training (0.2-0.9 jumps per minute (29) and performances (1-5 jumps per minute (1,27) few undertake supplemental fitness training that is likely to cause physiological adaptation (10-14,30,31,33). Research by Koutedakis et al. (12) and Wyon (33) highlighted the often overtrained status of dancers and the difficulty of implementing supplemental training into their present regimes. The present study has shown that minimal intervention (2 × 5 min·wk−1 WBV training) can have beneficial results that are unlikely to increase the overall training load on the dancers. Further research is now needed to establish optimum frequency, duration, and amplitude levels and long-term effects of vibration training and its interaction with other training methods. Also, the mechanisms for this improvement need to be further examined as there has been no research to date that has investigated the effect of WBV at a cellular level.
The results from the present study suggest that exposure to 2 5-minute WBV training sessions a week, for a 6-week period, is sufficient to increase vertical jump height. When combined with previous research reporting that WBV also has a beneficial effect on bone mineral density (23,24), it is recommended that dancers incorporate vibration training into their weekly schedules to not only improve their lower body power indices but also as a preventative measure in maintaining bone mineral density (BMD) (dancers have been reported to have very low BMD (11).
The authors would like to thank the Arts and Humanities Research Council, United Kingdom, for their financial contribution that allowed the research to proceed.
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