Determining the potential sites of neural adaptation to cross-education: implications for the cross-education of muscle strength

Frazer, Ashlyn, Pearce, Alan, Howatson, Glyn, Thomas, Kevin, Goodall, Stuart and Kidgell, Dawson (2018) Determining the potential sites of neural adaptation to cross-education: implications for the cross-education of muscle strength. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 118 (9). pp. 1751-1772. ISSN 1439-6319

Frazer et al 2018_compiled accepted version.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (677kB) | Preview
Official URL:


Cross-education describes the strength gain in the opposite, untrained limb following a unilateral strength training program. Since its discovery in 1894, several studies now confirm the existence of cross-education in contexts that involve voluntary dynamic contractions, eccentric contraction, electrical stimulation, whole-body vibration and, more recently, following mirror feedback training. Although many aspects of cross-education have been established, the mediating neural mechanisms remain unclear. Overall, the findings of this review show that the neural adaptations to cross-education of muscle strength most likely represent a continuum of change within the central nervous system that involves both structural and functional changes within cortical motor and non-motor regions. Such changes are likely to be the result of more subtle changes along the entire neuroaxis which include, increased corticospinal excitability, reduced cortical inhibition, reduced interhemispheric inhibition, changes in voluntary activation and new regions of cortical activation. However, there is a need to widen the breadth of research by employing several neurophysiological techniques (together) to better understand the potential mechanisms mediating cross-education. This fundamental step is required in order to better prescribe targeted and effective guidelines for the clinical practice of cross-education. There is a need to determine whether similar cortical responses also occur in clinical populations where, perhaps, the benefits of cross-education could be best observed.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Connectivity, Cross-education, Mirror neurons, Excitability, Inhibition, Twitch force
Subjects: C600 Sports Science
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 10 Sep 2018 14:59
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2021 11:17

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics