Background: Pre-competition massage is usually used to improve athletic performance and reduce risk of injury. Despite its usual use, the effects of pre-competition massage on neuromuscular function have barely been studied. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of the pre-competition massage over the gastrocnemius neuromuscular function. Method: The study is a quasi-experimental clinical trial thirty healthy athletes were enrolled in the study. Subjects received an intervention in one leg (experimental), consisting of a massage, and no intervention in the opposite leg (control). From all values of neuromuscular function, the following were analyzed: contraction time (Tc) and maximal displacement (Dm) by tensiomyography, and stiffness and tone by myotonometry. Results: Main effects of pre-competition massage on neuromuscular function include a significant (p < 0.05) increase in Tc and Dm variables, as well as a reduction in stiffness and tone. Conclusion: Data shows an increase in Tc and maximal radial displacement (Dm) variables, as well as a reduction in stiffness and tone. More quality studies are needed to draw clear conclusions about the effects of pre-competition massage.
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