View Full Version : Elastic Energy and Sliding Filament Theory

John M. Cissik
07-15-1996, 04:20 AM
-- [ From: John M. Cissik * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --

To: Biomch-l Subscribers
From: John M. Cissik
Subj: Elastic energy and the sliding filament theory

I am preparing to do research on the vertical jump and have run into a
stumbling block. As you know, the vertical jump is a very short duration
maximal test which utilizes primarily the ATP/PC energy system. Several
authors suggest that the storage and recovery of elastic energy affect the
performance during a counter-movement or depth type vertical jump. The
stumbling block that I have come upon is in the form of an article by:
van Ingen Schenau, G.J. (1984). An alternative view to the concept of
utilization of elastic energy in human movement. Human Movement Science, 3,

van Ingen Schenau disagrees with the elastic energy concept in this article.
He points out that most muscles do not have a large enough prestretch or
enough mechanical efficiency to account for the elastic energy levels that
are reported by the literature. In addition to this, he cites several
articles that call the cross bridge/sliding filament models into question or
at least point out that these models do not explain everything:
Homsher, E., Irving, M., and Wallner, A. (1981). J. Physiology, 321, 423-
Curtin, N.A., and Woledge, R.C. (1979). J. Physiology, 297, 539-550.
Curtin, N.A., and Woledge, R.C. (1979). J. Physiology, 288, 353-366.

This is not an area that I want to spend alot of time on with my thesis.
However, if there are alternate models it is worth exploring them. My
questions are:
1. Am I on a wild goose chase here?
2. Have I stumbled onto an old debate that is now resolved?
3. Is anyone still looking at these issues now?
Thank you for your time.
John M. Cissik