Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 7-10-1962


In order to reduce the time required for rehabilitation of the injured, there is a need to explore the possibilities of a method of reducing strength loss during immobilization of an extremity. A test of the conventional "quad-setting" exercises was inconclusive because the series could not be completed; however, there were indications that this method is relatively ineffective in preventing muscle atrophy. In search of an ideal positional angle for immobilization of the knee, a group of 10 normal subjects exercised one leg using brief isometric contractions at 165 ° and the other at 120 °. Exercise at both angles was equally successful in increasing strength. In a third series, brief maximal isometric exercise of the quadriceps femoris proved to be effective in preventing atrophy of disuse in normal subjects with a lower extremity immobilized in a cast. This method is worthy of a clinical trial on patients with extremities immobilized because of disease or injury.