chapter  57
Effect of Repeated Sprints on Hamstring Quadriceps Torque Ratios
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In Australian Rules Football (ARF), players must perform numerous near-maximal sprints with little recovery between each effort (McKenna et al., 1988). Heavy demands are placed on the phosphate and glycolytic energy pathways to produce energy rapidly for both hamstrings and quadriceps muscle contractions when sprinting. Research has identified the hamstrings as containing a greater proportion of fast-twitch (type II) muscle fibres than the quadriceps (Garrett et al., 1983; Garrett et al., 1984), therefore suggesting faster torque production (Aagaard et al., 1998). However, over a series of repeated sprint efforts, this may lead to an earlier onset and greater degree of fatigue in the hamstrings, therefore potentially altering the strength (torque) balance between these two muscle groups.