Training, Aging and Disuse


Course Objective

The purpose of the course Training, Aging and Disuse is to acquaint
students with physiological and molecular/cytological principles that
determine (peak) power and fatigue characteristics of skeletal muscle
and how these are changed by exercise training, disuse and aging. The
level of knowledge that should be attained in those disciplines will
allow students to understand how particular physiological conditions
will affect muscle function at different levels of organizations (i.e.
from whole motor unit to molecular signals in the muscle cells).

Course Content

Neuromuscular performance in terms of muscle peak power and maximal
steady state power is impaired during aging and with a chronic decrease
in usage, such as during bed rest, diseases, injuries, neuromuscular
disorders and (most extreme) after a spinal cord injury. During the
course, a critical overview is given of the current knowledge of short
and long term adaptations of the neuromuscular system in response to
training, aging, disuse and chronic disease, and how these relate to
impaired muscle function. Underlying (molecular) processes leading to
atrophy and reduced force generating capacity as well as a reduced
endurance performance of the neuromuscular system are discussed. To
obtain indications for how training or other interventions could
effectively prevent these adverse effects and improve muscle function, a
detailed overview is given of training induced changes in muscle
phenotype and how these are related to molecular regulators of protein
synthesis and degradation and mitochondrial biosynthesis. The content is
mostly based on recent own research.

Teaching Methods

(20 hrs / 10 lectures, 4 hrs / 2 working lectures, 4 hrs / 2 practicals,
120 hrs preparation for contact hours and exam.

The course will consist of a series of lectures during which relevant
questions are addressed and discussed. Using the literature assignments
students should study the material independently (even though group work
is encouraged) to attain a good understanding. In additional meetings
relevant items are addressed in group discussions based on prepared
questions/statements. Contact hours are intended to support that process
and have the following goals:
• To accentuate importance of the content
• To place contents within a theoretical framework
• To identify content importance for the movement sciences
• To discuss content difficulties that may arise during independent
study of assigned literature
• To practice solving problems using learned content.
In addition to the lectures, there are two laboratory practicals during
which students get acquainted with measurement techniques of human
muscle function in vivo and molecular analyses of gene expression and
protein synthesis.

Method of Assessment

The course ends with a written test consisting of short essay questions.


Obligatory reading
- Book: Skeletal Muscle (SM)
D.A. Jones, J. Round, and A. de Haan. Skeletal Muscle from Molecules to
Movement; A textbook of Muscle Physiology for Sport, Exercise,
Physiotherapy and Medicine. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone, Elsevier
Science Limited, 2004. ISBN 0 443 07427 5.
- In addition, the reading material consists of a number of scientific
papers, which will be made available at Black Board.

Additional Information

The student should have a basic knowledge and understanding of molecular
biology, exercise and muscle physiology.

Custom Course Registration

For more info on workgroups, laboratories, (computer) practicals etc. please see Canvas.

General Information

Course Code B_TRAD
Credits 6 EC
Period P2
Course Level 400
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Fac. of Behavioural and Movement Science
Course Coordinator dr. R.T. Jaspers
Examiner dr. R.T. Jaspers
Teaching Staff dr. R.T. Jaspers
dr. H.L. Gerrits
prof. dr. M.A.G.M. Pijnappels

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Teaching Methods Lecture, Study Group