Electromyography Biopac Exercise Discussion Term Paper

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Electromyography BIOPAC Exercise Discussion

This discussion of the electromyography exercise will begin by first describing and discussing the exercise that was preformed. The results and corresponding data will then be contrasted with the original hypothesis. In this instance, the hypothesis created before initiating the experiment was shown to be supported by the data collected. Furthermore, the discussion will relate this exercise to other experiments that have been recently performed by members of the academic community in the field of medical research.


The data collection in this laboratory exercise relied solely on the BIOPAC computer-based data acquisition and analysis system. This system includes all of the necessary equipment to detect electrical signals that are emitted by the skeletal muscular system. The sophistication of this equipment allows these signals to be recorded at the surface of the skin as opposed to other more intrusive methods of electrical detection in the human body. Another benefit this particular setup is that there is no need for calibration, the device automatically calibrates it sensors and the data recorded is automatically uploaded into the accompanying software.

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This exercise was divided into two separate parts. In the first part, the test subject was asked to perform a routine of fist clenching, one hand at a time. When performing this routine, the device simultaneously recorded the electrical signals produced by the subject's body during these movements. The higher the number the device recorded equated to the greater amount of motor unit recruitment the subjects arm exhibited. The data was then sent to the software program for analysis.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Electromyography Biopac Exercise Discussion This Discussion of Assignment

In the second phase of this exercise, another variable was introduced to the experiment. An attachment to equipment, called a hand dynamometer, was added that recorded the force produced by the subjects arm during muscle contraction. Furthermore, the time frame that it took the clenched muscles to become fatigued was also recorded by equipment and automatically entered into the software program. These data was then analyzed to compare the differences in the electrical signals produced by both the dominant and non-dominant arms.

The hypothesis stated before performing the exercises predicted that the dominant arm would perform with greater electromyogram (EMG) readings while the subjects performed the physical tasks required of them. It also predicted that the dominant arm would be able to sustain muscle contraction for a greater amount of time than the non-dominant arm before reaching the point of muscle fatigue. The data collected supported both predictions of the hypothesis. The dominant hand, which can be intuitively considered the stronger of the two hands, was able to exert greater levels of electrical signals, greater force upon the hand dynamometer, and also required a greater amount of time before reaching a fatigued state.

The underlying physiology of the arm that further illustrates the chemical and mechanical processes that occurred during this experiment will also be described. The primary function of human muscles is to contract; thus giving the individual the ability to perform various movements and allow them a vast range of different motions. In order for this to occur the muscle must convert chemical energy (ATP) to mechanical energy. The trigger to initiate this process is provided by motor neurons. Each neuron is responsible for stimulating a specific group of muscle fibers which is also known as a motor unit. The body has a remarkable ability to match the amount of motor units stimulated with the amount of strength (contraction) required. When more force is required by the arm, more motor units are enlisted by the arm to help and this is referred to as motor unit recruitment.

EMG Testing Uses… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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