Muscle & contracture


Combining functional exercises with resistance training increases muscle size and improves function in young adults with cerebral palsy

Sizes of leg muscles in young adults with cerebral palsy can be reduced by up to 50% compared with typically developing people (Shortland 2009). The reduced muscle size may be caused by the effects of cerebral palsy itself, reduced muscle use, treatments that are directed at the muscle (such as […]


Resistance training after stroke improves strength but not necessarily function

Muscle weakness is the largest cause of disability after stroke (Canning et al 2004). Stroke survivors have levels of muscle strength that are about half of that of people who have not had a stroke (Dorsch et al 2016; Horstman et al 2008). Thus, it is important to identify interventions that […]


Motor Impairment Blog’s most popular posts

Over the past 4.5 years, researchers from all over the world have written non-technical summaries on their research for the Motor Impairment Blog. Consequently, the Blog contains a rich archive of information on topics such as muscle strength and weakness, falls and balance, sensation, pain, motor control, and research methods. […]


Interview: Prof Andrew Creswell talks about the intrinsic muscles of the foot

Little is known about the small intrinsic foot muscles and their function during walking and running. In this video, Prof Andrew Creswell of the University of Queensland talks about the results of his research in which he has utilized imaging ultrasound and intramuscular electromyography to study the role of intrinsic […]


Interview: Prof Nicholas Taylor on strength training and mobility in young people with cerebral palsy

In young people with cerebral palsy, strength training increases the forces that their muscles produce. But does that mean that strength training helps young people with cerebral palsy walk better? Professor Nicholas Taylor talks about strength training and mobility in young people with cerebral palsy.      


Prof Rob Herbert selects his “Paper of the Year” for 2017

People who have had a stroke may develop disabling spasticity and contracture. In the upper limb, spasticity and contracture sometime manifest as a characteristic postural deformity: in standing, the relaxed arm is held with the shoulder adducted and internally rotated, the elbow flexed and pronated, and the wrist and fingers […]


3D architecture of muscles during growth

Body mass and body size increase during growth. Muscles must adapt during growth to deal with these changes. However, little is known about the modifications in the three dimensional geometry (e.g. cross-sectional area, fibre length) of developing muscles (Bénard et al. 2011; Böl et al. 2017). Knowledge about the structural […]


Training for muscle endurance after stroke

Previous research supports the use of resistance training as a safe and effective exercise intervention for disabled stroke patients (Lee et al. 2010; Pak & Patten 2008). Although resistance training programs for stroke typically target improvements in maximal muscle strength, gains in muscle endurance (i.e. the ability to sustain submaximal […]


Recovery from stroke after more than 20 years

Much can be learned from case studies of individual patients. This has been shown more than once in the field of stroke research.  The observations by the illustrious neuroanatomist Dr. Brodal of his own stroke are an example (Brodal 1973). A paper recently published in the Journal of Neurophysiology provides […]