Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


Pain--Treatment; Therapeutics, Physiological;


Intermittent pneumatic compression is used for the recovery of active individuals following intense exercise with little research to support its use. This study evaluates the effectiveness of intermittent pneumatic compression on musculoskeletal pain associated with DOMS among healthy college age population. Objective: Evaluate the efficacy of intermittent pneumatic compression, compared to a placebo, in the prevention of pain associated with delayed onset muscle soreness. Design: Experimental, Repeated Measure Design. Participants: Thirty healthy college-age volunteers (15 male: 21.5 ± 2.3 yrs, 179.3 ± 9.9 cm, 91.4 ± 26.4 kg; 15; female: 20.4 ± 1.5 yrs, 168.9 ± 6.9 cm, 69.1 ± 12.4 kg). Methods: Participants were induced with delayed onset muscle soreness in the elbow flexors of their non-dominant arm. Participants were randomly assigned to two groups: intermittent pneumatic compression treatment or placebo. Participants received treatment for 30 minutes immediately after completing the DOMS protocol. Main Outcome Measures: Pain reported using the Numeric Rating Scale (NRS). Results: A 2x3 factorial ANOVA revealed a significant interaction (F(2,56)=3.5, p=0.037), therefore simple effects were calculated. The primary question was the effect of the intervention on pain and not the effect of time on pain. Thus, only differences between the experimental groups were considered. Independent t-tests indicated that there were no differences in reported pain between the intermittent pneumatic compression (treatment) group and the placebo group immediately (t(28)=-0.68, p=0.50) post-treatment, at 24 hours (t(28)=-1.4, p=0.18) or at 48 hours (t(28)=-0.68, p=0.50). Conclusion: Intermittent pneumatic compression was not effective at preventing pain associated with DOMS when applied immediately after exercise for 30 minutes. Therefore, clinicians should choose a different intervention when attempting to prevent the pain associated with DOMS.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Science


School of Health, Physical Education, and Leisure Services


Division of Athletic Training

First Advisor

Todd A. Evans, Chair

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (ix, 93 pages)



File Format


Included in

Therapeutics Commons