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Comparing BFR Bands & Their Effect on Quadriceps Muscle Activation

 

Physical therapists at San Diego State recruited 34 subjects to perform 3 trials of knee extension exercise. The measured EMG activity, a Pain Score and a Perceived Exertion score during each trial. 

B Strong BFR Bands are significantly more comfortable and therefore more tolerable to use than Delfi. B Strong BFR does not need supervision. The medical expertise and physiology knowledge regarding BFR mechanism behind the brand, was able to guide the design of B Strong BFR bands, to be safe and effective and easy to use, almost anywhere, almost anytime, and almost by anyone.

Study Highlights

  • Low load BFRT produced lower EMG activity in comparison to high-load resistance exercise.
  • Utilization of BFRT was better tolerated using a “standard” BFR device.
  • With a “regulated” BFR device, starting with an occlusion pressure below 80% of LOP may improve tolerance.
  • Men and women had similar quadriceps activity and perceptual responses to the respective exercise conditions.

 

B Strong Findings

1. EMG activity (which reflects the percent of muscle recruitment) was greatest with regular high load training and was almost twice as much as with both Delfi and B Strong. While not significant, note B Strong elicited a greater % of maximal contraction than did Delfi. From the EMG activity, no real difference between B Strong and Delfi but it says subjects tried equally hard.


In this paper, they labeled B Strong as Standardized BFR, Delfi as Regulated BFR and Control as standard heavy lifting.

Fig. 5. Peak muscle activity (percent MVIC) of the vastus lateralis. *p < .001 are significant differences between the control (high-load) condition and both the standardized (B Strong)  and regulated (Delfi) conditions. Abbreviation: MVIC, maximum voluntary isometric contraction.

 

2. The pain score (NPRS value) was judged by the subject at the end of each set and the highest value reported for the session. What we see here is Delfi was significantly more painful than B Strong and both were significantly more painful than standard heavy lifting. This is the biggest finding for us, however, the authors did not distinguish between the pain from squeezing your thing that Delfi does versus the “pain” of fatigue that B Strong produces. However, B Strong session (the middle bar) was a more comfortable experience.

What we see here is Delfi was significantly more painful than B Strong and both were significantly more painful than standard heavy lifting.

 

3. The last thing the researchers evaluated was the amount of perceived exertion (OMNI-RES Score) associate with the BFR sets and the high load lifting set. What we see here is that there was significantly greater perceived exertion with Delfi than either B Strong or high load and that there was significantly greater perceived exertion with B Strong than high load.

What we see here is that there was significantly greater perceived exertion with Delfi than either B Strong or high load and that there was significantly greater perceived exertion with B Strong than high load.

 

 

SOURCES

Comparison of blood flow restriction devices and their effect on quadriceps muscle activation - ScienceDirect

Comparison of blood flow restriction devices and their effect on quadriceps muscle activation - PubMed

 

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