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Infrared Reduced Muscle Soreness, Decreases Recovery Time

Quick Dose Info

Wavelength (nm):
850 nm
Joules (J):
75 J total


Below is a summary of this article:
Study Summary

Reduce muscle damage, muscle pain (soreness), muscle atrophy, muscle recovery time; increase muscle mass, and athletic performance treating the quadriceps femoris muscles with 850 nm LED light with a total of 75 J.

Wavelength (nm)
850 nm
Joules (J)
75 J total
Body Target
Condition Treated
Muscle Soreness
Muscle Strength
Treatment Time (seconds)
Irradiance/Power Density (mW/cm^2)
0.2 mW/cm^2
1 treatment
Treatment Points
EMF Type
Infrared 700-1400 nm
Links Above
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More Info

Researchers gave subjects 850 nm LED treatment on the quadriceps after leg press and leg extension strength training. The subjects were twins. One acted as control and received a placebo. The device delivering photons covered the entire muscle to increase speed of delivery over individual laser diode treatment.
The subjects were identical twins who played soccer and regularly exercised. Researchers gave one 75 total joules of infrared light on both quadriceps. The other twin got a placebo light treatment.

The twins used the leg press and leg extension machines. They received light treatment after exercise. Researchers conducted muscle biopsies, magnetic resonance imaging, maximal load, and fatigue resistance tests before and after training.

To measure differences, researchers looked at gene expression, muscle hypertrophy, and performance. They used the visual analog scale to determine muscle damaged and delayed onset muscle soreness.

The researchers made a flexible array of 50 infrared LEDs covering 612 cm^2 which covered the quadricep femoris muscles. The large array standardized treatment over using individual diode laser points. Each LED deliver 0.2 mW/cm^2 per spot. The 50 LEDs by 0.2 mW/cm^2 yielded 100 mW delivery of 15 J in 15 seconds, or 75 J per application.

They found that LED photobiomodulation after exercise up-regulated oxidative stress defenses, allowing the treated subject to better defend against oxidative stress. The treated subject had consistently better scores in all areas. The infrared light therapy:

  • reduced muscle damage
  • reduced muscle pain
  • reduced muscle atrophy
  • increase muscle mass
  • increase recovery
  • increase athletic performance