JOURNAL ARTICLE

The effects of ice massage, ice massage with exercise, and exercise on the prevention and treatment of delayed onset muscle soreness

W K Isabell, E Durrant, W Myrer, S Anderson
Journal of Athletic Training 1992, 27 (3): 208-17
16558163
We investigated the effects of ice massage, ice massage with exercise, and exercise on the prevention and treatment of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). Twenty-two subjects were randomly assigned to one of four groups. Preexercise measures were recorded for range of motion (ROM), strength, perceived soreness, and serum creatine kinase (CK) levels. Subjects performed up to 300 concentric/eccentric contractions of the elbow flexors with 90% of their 10 repetition maximum to induce muscle soreness. Dependent variables were assessed at 2, 4, 6, 24, 48, 72, 96, and 120 hours postexercise. Significant differences occurred in all variables with respect to time (ANOVA(p<.05)). However, no significant mode of treatment, or mode of treatment/assessment time interaction was present. Decreases in range of motion and flexion strength correspond with increases in perceived soreness. The nonsignificant mode of treatment/assessment time interaction suggests that the use of ice massage, ice massage with exercise, or exercise alone is not effective in significantly reducing the symptoms of delayed onset muscle soreness. In fact, though not statistically significant, the pattern of the data suggested the use of ice in the treatment of DOMS may be contraindicated. Further investigation is recommended.

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