Acute effects of wearing bite-aligning mouthguards on muscular strength, power, agility and quickness in a trained population: A systematic review

Adrià Miró, Bernat Buscà, Joan Aguilera-Castells, Jordi Arboix-Alió

Research output: Indexed journal article Reviewpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The purpose of the present systematic review was to determine the acute effects of wearing bite-aligning mouthguards on muscle strength, power, agility and quickness in athletes. A search of the current literature was performed using the electronic databases (until 1 May 2021) Web of Science, Scopus and Medline. The inclusion criteria were: (1) descriptive design studies; (2) with randomized clinical trials; (3) examining the within-subject acute effects of wearing mouthguards on functional and neuromuscular performance parameters; (4) in physical active, recreational or high-standard athletes. Twenty-seven studies met the inclusion criteria. Sixteen reported positive effects in some of the variables assessed, two reported negative effects and the rest found no significant differences. Overall, the main findings described in the literature are inconclusive concerning the neuromuscular advantages of using mouthguards in muscle strength, power, agility and quickness. These discrepancies might be related to several factors such as differences in testing protocols, poor control of the jaw magnitude and improper mouthguard designs. Despite these differences, after conducting the present systematic review, the authors speculate that jaw clenching while wearing custom-made, bite-aligning oral devices might promote beneficial effects in lower limb power actions, especially in jump ability and knee extension movements. Thus, athletes might consider the use of mouthguards, not only for their protective role but also for the potential ergogenic effects in specific actions, mainly those for which lower limb muscular power are required.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6933
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume18
Issue number13
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2021

Keywords

  • Ergogenic effects
  • Jaw clenching
  • Mouthguards
  • Neuromuscular performance
  • Sport
  • Vertical dimension

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