This study examined the volitional and magnetically-evoked neuromuscular performance of the quadriceps femoris at functional knee joint angles adjacent to full extension. Indices of volitional and magnetically-evoked neuromuscular performance (N=15 healthy males, 23.5±2.9years, 71.5±5.4kg, 176.5±5.5cm) were obtained at 25°, 35° and 45° of knee flexion. Results showed that volitional and magnetically-evoked peak force (PFV and PTFE, respectively) and electromechanical delay (EMDV and EMDE, respectively) were enhanced by increased knee flexion. However, greater relative improvements in volitional compared to evoked indices of neuromuscular performance were observed with increasing flexion from 25° to 45° (e.g. EMDV, EMDE: 36% vs. 11% improvement, respectively; F[2,14]=6.8, p<0.05). There were no significant correlations between EMDV and EMDE or PFV and PTFE, at analogous joint positions. These findings suggest that the extent of the relative differential between volitional and evoked neuromuscular performance capabilities is joint angle-specific and not correlated with performance capabilities at adjacent angles, but tends to be smaller with increased flexion. As such, effective prediction of volitional from evoked performance capabilities at both analogous and adjacent knee joint positions would lack robustness. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd
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