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The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is one of the most commonly injured ligaments, with over 250,000 injuries per year in the United States. Previous studies have found that ACL-deficient individuals avoid use of the quadriceps in the injured limb as a means of limiting anterior movement of the tibia in the absence of a functioning ACL. From these results, a study was designed to investigate the effectiveness of isokinetic single-leg cycling in increasing quadriceps muscle recruitment and activation. Ten control and seven ACL-reconstructed subjects completed a series of 15 s cycling trials in isokinetic mode at 75 rpm, while kinematic, kinetic, and electromyographic data of the lower limbs were collected, with the trials including both double-leg and single-leg cycling. It was hypothesized that there would be an increase in quadriceps muscle activity, peak knee extensor moment, and knee joint power in single-leg cycling when compared to double-leg cycling. The results of the study suggest that single-leg cycling may be an effective exercise in increasing the strength of the quadriceps following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery. Although no significant changes occurred, the results indicate that, given a specific limb power, more muscle force will be generated from the quadriceps muscle group in single-leg cycling than double-leg cycling.
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Hutchison, R.; Myers, J.; Hayden, N.; Shearer, L.; Bruneau, K.; DesJardins, J.D. Evaluation of Isokinetic Single-Leg Cycling as a Rehabilitation Exercise Following Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Surgery. J. Funct. Morphol. Kinesiol. 2017, 2(3), 32.