Neuromuscular Aspects of Physical Activity / Edition 1

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There is no shortage of research findings in the burgeoning field of the neurosciences and molecular biology and their impact on the physiology of exercise.

Now Neuromuscular Aspects of Physical Activity brings together—in one focused text—the latest research compiled from an array of sources and fields of science, including neuroscience, kinesiology, molecular biology, and physiology. The comprehensive approach makes it an excellent textbook for undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in muscle physiology courses. It's also an outstanding reference for exercise and muscle physiologists.

This advanced text is thoughtfully organized in a logical way, building from a foundational discussion of muscle fibers and motor units to cover the neuromuscular responses to physical activity.

Among the many features that make this text invaluable to students are discussions of current issues in the field, especially the debate surrounding the sources and significance of fatigue at different levels of the nervous system and whether the spinal cord can “learn.”

This thorough and remarkably current text features the following:

-More than 155 diagrams

-Meticulous, up-to-the-minute references

-Highlights of fatigue, endurance training, resistance training, and inactivity

-Topics sparsely covered in research literature
No other text so clearly ties recent research information from neuroscience and molecular biology to our understanding of the physiology of exercise.

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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Jeff Schneider, MS (University of Delaware)
Description: This book begins with muscle physiology then progresses to the interaction of the motornueron and the muscle unit. The author then presents the basic mechanism of fatigue involving the nervous system response to strength and endurance training.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide an overview of neuromuscular involvement in physical activity and how the neuromuscular system responds to strength and endurance training. The book meets the author's objectives, but these objectives are also met in chapters in other books.
Audience: As the author states, the book is written for individuals who have a basic understanding of neuromuscular physiology. This understanding is essential before using the book. The author's background gives credibility to this book.
Features: The book presents a subject that is covered in chapters in other books. The artwork is limited to black-and-white figures and gives the book a boring appearance. Color needs to be added.
Assessment: This would be a good supplemental text. The information presented in the book is good. The artwork needs to be improved, especially with today's technology.
This textbook for a muscle physiology course overviews neuromuscular involvement in physical activity, how the neuromuscular system is used, and how it responds to fatiguing exercise and to changes in chronic activation levels. Gardiner (University of Montreal) covers muscle fiber types, motor units, and both endurance and strength training. No exercises are provided. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780736001267
  • Publisher: Human Kinetics Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/29/2001
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Philip Gardiner, PhD, is currently a professor in the department of kinesiology at the University of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He also is an associate member of the school of physical and occupational therapy at McGill University and associate researcher at the institute de kinesitherapie at the Free University of Brussels.

For 25 years, Dr. Gardiner has conducted and published research pertaining to the effects of physical activity on the neuromuscular system, and his work has appeared in leading physiology journals. He is president of the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology.

The former editor of the Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology, Dr. Gardiner obtained his doctorate in exercise physiology from the University of Alberta at Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

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Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Muscle Fiber Types

-Grouping Fibers by Myosin Heavy-Chain (MHC) Composition

-Functional Properties of Fibers Containing Different Myosin Heavy-Chain Profiles

-Fiber Types and Performance

Chapter 2. Motoneurons and the Muscle Units They Innervate

-The Muscle Unit and Muscle Unit Types

-The Motoneuron Component of the Motor Unit

-The Heckman–Binder Model of Motor Unit Recruitment

-Motor Unit Recruitment During Different Types of Voluntary

Chapter 3. Neuromuscular Fatigue

-Two Basic Fatigue Mechanisms Involving the Nervous System: Neuromuscular Transmission Failure and Decreased Motoneuron Activity

-Reduced Motoneuron Activity During Various Types of Contractions

-Evidence From Reduced Animal Preparations on Mechanisms of Neuromuscular Fatigue

Chapter 4. Endurance Training of the Neuromuscular System

-Muscle Adaptations

-The Neuromuscular Junction

-Motoneuron Adaptations to Endurance Training

-Spinal Cord Adaptations to Endurance Training

Chapter 5. Strength Training

-Acute Effects of Strength Training on Protein Synthesis and Degradation

-The Chronic Effect of Resistance Overload on Muscle Phenotype

-Neural Effects of Resistance Training

Chapter 6. Neuromuscular Responses to Decrease in Normal Activity

-General Principles Underlying Neuromuscular Responses to Reduced Activity

-Models of Decreased Neuromuscular Usage

About the Author

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