IU Study on Strength, Power and Flexibility

June 25, 2009

Indiana University releases results of double blind Intracell Stick study

Acute Effects of the INTRACELL STICK on Muscle Strength, Power and Flexibility

Conducted by A.E. Mikesky, R. Bahamonde, K. Stanton, T. Alvey, and T. Fitton

Indiana University

The Intracell Stick is a non-motorized device used to stretch and massage muscle. It is basically a semi-rigid rod around which independent, smooth, one inch spindles rotate. The Intracell Stick is being increasingly used by athletes to improve performance. The purpose of this project was to assess the acute effects of the Intracell Stick on muscle strength, power and flexibility in a group of athletes.

Thirty well-conditioned male and female collegiate athletes from the sport of soccer, volleyball and basketball, were selected for the study. During each testing session, athletes performed four measures in the following sequence: hamstring flexibility, vertical jump, flying start 20 yard dash, and isokinetic knee extension strength at 90 deg/sec.

Two minutes of intervention treatment [visualization (control), mock insensible electrical stimulation (placebo), or stretch & massage using the Intracell Stick (experimental)] was performed immediately prior to each performance measure. Only one intervention was used per testing session.

Concentric muscular strength was assessed by using a KINCOM III isokinetic dynamometer to measure maximum knee extension . . . . Muscular power was assessed vertically by the vertical jump using a Vertec jump apparatus. Horizontal power was tested in the flying start 20 yard sprint using a Brower Speedtrap II photoelectric timer . . . . Muscular flexibility was assessed by measurement of the hamstring using a Leighton flexometer. Results are shown below.


Hamstring Flexibility degrees

Vertical Jump Inches

20 Yard Dash Seconds

Extension Strength Pounds

Visualization 92.2 20.0 2.76 154.5
Mock Stimulation 90.2 19.7 2.76 153.2
Intracell Stick 92.5 20.1 2.74 155.0

According to the principal investigator, Alan E. Mikesky, PhD, “If the 20 yard sprint improvement carries over to longer distances, it could mean the difference between winning and placing in a race. Personally, I was surprised at the findings since the double blind study design removed any chance for study bias.”


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