Journal of Trainology



August 2021; Vol. 10, No. 2: Pages 16-19

Brisk walking with practical blood flow restriction did not induce impairment of knee proprioception and fatigue

Yujiro Yamada, Ryan Kasprzak, Shelby Shotton, Addyson Miller-Brown, Alec M.G. Mathew, Jeremy P. Loenneke, John Thistlethwaite


Impaired proprioception can provide faulty sensory feedback to the brain during movement, resulting in an increased risk of injury. Although several safety concerns about blood flow restricted exercise have been investigated, no research has observed how this exercise affects proprioception. Objectives: To investigate the effects of walking with and without practical blood flow restriction (pBFR) on muscle fatigue and knee proprioception. Design: Within-subject Randomized Crossover Design Methods: Fourteen healthy young adults (9 males and 5 females) walked on a treadmill at 5.6 km/h with a fixed grade for fifteen minutes either with or without elastic belts (using the moderate perceived tightness, "7 out of 10"). Absolute angular error of a standing position sense test (index of proprioception) and peak/average power outputs of countermovement jumps (index of fatigue) were measured before and immediately after exercise. Results: For absolute angular error, there was no evidence of a difference (BF10=0.64) between walking with and without pBFR [pBFR: Δ-1.5 ± 3.8 ˚ vs. Control: Δ 0.19 ± 3.8 ˚]. The change in peak power was not different (BF10=0.28) between conditions [pBFR: Δ -34.5 ± 1019 W vs. Control: Δ 150 ± 1616 W]. Similarly, the change in average power was also not different (BF10=0.28) between conditions [pBFR: Δ 9.1 ± 53 vs. Control: Δ -3.4 ± 73 W]. Conclusions: There was no evidence that walking with pBFR induced fatigue or impairment of knee proprioception, suggesting that walking with pBFR might be safely performed without increasing the risk of injury.

Received June 27, 2021; accepted August 21, 2021