The Effect of Various Body Positions on Performance of the Isometric Mid-Thigh Pull

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The purpose of this dissertation was to evaluate the effects of changing body position on the execution of the isometric mid-thigh pull (IMTP). Furthermore, while there is evidence to suggest that there is an effect of familiarization on performance of maximal strength tests, there has been no known research evaluating the effect of learning on the IMTP. The effect of familiarization was assessed by evaluating changes in variables obtained from the IMTP. Subjects did not statistically improve over the five IMTP testing sessions, regardless of the body position used, or if subjects had previous experience with weightlifting derivatives. This may indicate that little familiarization is needed for subjects to perform the IMTP before acute increases due to learning stabilize. When body positions were compared, there were differences in force production whether subjects had or did not have experience with weightlifting movements. The magnitude of difference between body position was affected by weightlifting movement experience; lifters with >6 months experience with weightlifting had larger differences in force production between position. Average muscle activation for a variety of muscles, evaluated with surface EMG, appeared to differ between body positions, although these positions are idiosyncratic to experience level. In particular, lumbar erector spinae activation was higher in the bent position for both groups, which may have implications for low back injury risk.In entirety, it appears that if maximizing force production is the goal, the upright positon is optimal. Furthermore, the differing body positions have meaningfully different effects on how 3 much individual muscles are activated between positions. Lastly, substantial familiarization does not appear to be necessary before subjects perform the IMTP.

Original languageAmerican English
JournalDefault journal
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • familiarization
  • learning
  • maximal strength
  • performance testing
  • test validity


  • Biomechanics
  • Exercise Science
  • Kinesiology
  • Other Kinesiology

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