Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Peroneus longus stretch reflex amplitude increases after ankle brace application
  1. M L Cordova1,
  2. C D Ingersoll2
  1. 1Athletic Training Department, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana 47809, USA
  2. 2Department of Human Services, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia 22904, USA
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr Cordova, Athletic Training Department, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana 47809, USA; 


Background: The use of external ankle support is widespread throughout sports medicine. However, the application of ankle bracing to a healthy ankle over a long period has been scrutinised because of possible neuromuscular adaptations resulting in diminished dynamic support offered by the peroneus longus.

Objective: To investigate the immediate and chronic effects of ankle brace application on the amplitude of peroneus longus stretch reflex.

Methods: Twenty physically active college students (mean (SD) age 23.6 (1.7) years, height 168.7 (8.4) cm, and mass 69.9 (12.0) kg) who had been free from lower extremity pathology for the 12 months preceding the study served as subjects. None had been involved in a strength training or conditioning programme in the six months preceding the study. A 3 × 3 × 2 (test condition × treatment condition × time) design with repeated measures on the first and third factor was used. The peroneus longus stretch reflex (% of maximum amplitude) during sudden foot inversion was evaluated under three ankle brace conditions (control, lace up, and semi-rigid) before and after eight weeks of ankle brace use.

Results: A 3 × 3 × 2 repeated measures analysis of variance showed that peroneus longus stretch reflex amplitude increased immediately after application of a lace up brace (67.1 (4.4)) compared with the semi-rigid (57.9 (4.3)) and control (59.0 (5.2)) conditions (p<0.05). Peroneus longus stretch reflex also increased after eight weeks of use of the semi-rigid brace compared with the lace up and control conditions (p<0.05).

Conclusions: Initial application of a lace up style ankle brace and chronic use of a semi-rigid brace facilitates the amplitude of the peroneus longus stretch reflex. It appears that initial and long term ankle brace use does not diminish the magnitude of this stretch reflex in the healthy ankle.

  • peroneus longus response
  • monosynaptic reflex
  • ankle bracing
  • electromyography

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.