Effect of sex hormones on neuromuscular control patterns during landing

Gregory S. Dedrick, Phillip S. Sizer, Jennifer N. Merkle, Troy R. Hounshell, Jacalyn J. Robert-McComb, Steven F. Sawyer, Jean Michel Brismée, C. Roger James

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


The purpose of the study was to investigate the effects of sex hormones across menstrual cycle phases on lower extremity neuromuscular control patterns during the landing phase of a drop jump. A repeated-measures design was utilized to examine sex hormone effects in 26 recreationally active eumenorrheic women. Varus/valgus knee angle and EMG activity from six lower extremity muscles were recorded during three drop jumps from a 50 cm platform in each phase of the menstrual cycle. Blood assays verified sex hormone levels and cycle phase. The semitendinosus muscle exhibited onset delays (p ≤ 0.006) relative to ground contact during the luteal phase, and demonstrated a significant (p ≤ 0.05) difference between early and late follicular phases. Muscle timing differences between the gluteus maximus and semitendinosus were decreased (p ≤ 0.05) in the luteal compared to early follicular phases. These results suggest a different co-contractive behavior between the gluteus maximus and semitendinosus, signifying a shift in neuromuscular control patterns. It appears that female recreational athletes utilize a different neuromuscular control pattern for performing a drop jump sequence when estrogen levels are high (luteal phase) compared to when they are low (early follicular phase).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-78
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Electromyography and Kinesiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2008


  • ACL
  • Knee valgus
  • Menstrual cycle
  • Onset latency


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