Vibration Therapy can be used to improve blood circulation. It works particularly well with peripheral vascular system.
Peripheral vascular system plays the essential role to relay, regulate and distribute the blood to tissues all over our body, and after fluid exchange at the tissues, the system push the blood back to heart, finishing a systemic circulation circle.
In fact, human body relies on three types of blood transport functions to achieve the needed healthy blood circulation.
Three Blood Transport Functions
Besides heart, vessel and skeletal muscle also perform blood transport function.
|Heart||Pump & suck||Cardiac muscle||Involuntary|
|Vessel||Relay & distribute||Smooth muscle||Involuntary|
|Skeletal muscle||Distribute & exchange||Skeletal muscle||Voluntary|
Cardiovascular circulation: combined blood transport functions of heart and vessels.
Peripheral circulation: combined blood transport functions of vessels and skeletal muscle.
Heart function is at the center of the entire circulation system. Heart constantly pumps blood with the involuntary cardiac muscle contraction.
Vessels, through their non-striated smooth muscles contraction, further relay and distribute the blood to tissues around the body. Vessel’s smooth muscles form the inner layer of vessel walls. Vessels’ smooth muscles contract involuntarily, constantly relay blood to flow on its direction. Arteries assist outbound flow to tissues, vines assist inbound flow to heart.
Skeletal muscle contraction also performs a blood transport function.
When skeletal muscles contracts, they squeeze the adjacent vessels, assisting vessel’s relay and distribution function. The contraction also drives blood flow and exchange in tissues and small vessels.
Skeletal muscle’s blood transport function is more significant in micro-circulation, which is the blood movement in the small vessels including arterioles, venules, metarterioles, and capillaries. Micro-circulation fulfills the ultimate role of the entire circulation system: bringing fresh blood charged with oxygen and nutrients to cells and taking away metabolism waste.
Skeletal muscle’s function in circulation is particularly important for micro-circulation, because at micro level, the powers of heart and main vessels become weak, and skeletal muscle’s advantage in local transport becomes significant. To maintain a healthy blood circulation, keeping sufficient skeletal muscle activity is essential.
Vibration Stimulates Unique Muscle Contraction
While cardiac muscles and smooth muscles contract involuntarily, skeletal muscles contract voluntary to our brain signals or other stimulations.
Using skeletal muscle’s natural stretch reflex response, vibration can stimulate fast pace muscle contraction, a continuous rapid pulses of high intensity contraction. Such contraction pattern and the impact are not available from regular physical exercise.
The fast pace of contraction and relaxation means more tiny pumping strokes on blood vessels and tissues, more efficient in moving fluids. Therefore, vibration induced skeletal muscle contraction is more effective in enhancing peripheral circulation and micro-circulation.
Based on controlled research trails and quantified studies, scientists have observed significantly higher muscle perfusion in vibration exercise than in regular exercise.
Muscle perfusion can be calculated by measuring blood volume, flow velocity and vessel diameter using Doppler imaging devise.
Muscle perfusion indicates the flow rate and volume of blood and other tissue fluids in the muscle. Increased muscle perfusion is an evidence of peripheral circulation improvement.
Vibration therapy can be used to boost skeletal muscle’s blood transport function especially in peripheral circulation.
Vibration induces unique muscle contraction pattern and intensity, efficiently aiding body fluid movement.
The unique muscle contraction pattern can help achieve enhanced micro-circulation that, in some situations, not achieved through regular cardio excise and strength training.
Senior people and physically weak people may not be able to maintain sufficient daily exercise to create enough amount and duration of skeletal muscle contraction needed for healthy circulation. Vibration therapy, using external energy, with its effectiveness and efficiency, provides an excellent solution for these populations.
Soft tissue injuries can cause problems in micro-circulation, which hinder the recovery. For injured people, cardio exercise may not be available or sufficient in bringing blood to the damaged soft tissue for the repair.
Vibration can be introduced to local area to improve the micro-circulation. Many profession related muscle injuries are caused of overusing secondary muscles, and often got unnoticed at the initial stage, until chronic muscle diseases are developed.
Secondary muscle are usually remote from major vessels. Cardio exercise may not be effective to bring blood to these muscle for the recovery. Vibration therapy can be introduced to these muscles to create need contraction and improve the circulation.
Many vibration therapy users reported increased energy level after using their vibration plates. That is because the increase of blood oxygen saturation level in their body through vibration exercise.
Research studies come out inconsistent results about the oxygen saturation after vibration exercise, but many users reported increased oxygen saturation measured using home-use devices.
In conclusion, vibration therapy can not only enhance peripheral blood circulation, but also, in some situations, achieve circulation results that could not be otherwise achieved. References:
- A systematic review of studies investigating the effects of controlled whole-body vibration intervention on peripheral circulation by M H Mahbub, Keiichi Hiroshige, Natsu Yamaguchi, Ryosuke Hase, Noriaki Harada, Tsuyoshi Tanabe PubMed.gov | PMID: 31278826
- “Effect of vibration on muscle perfusion: a systematic review” By Joel T Fuller, Rebecca L Thomson, Peter R C Howe, Jonathan D Buckley PubMed.gov | PMID: 23216759
- Whole-body vibration and blood flow and muscle By Kenneth E Games, JoEllen M Sefton, Alan E Wilson PubMed.gov | PMID: 25974682
- The influence of whole body vibration on the central and peripheral cardiovascular system Dan Robbins, Priya Yoganathan, Mark Goss-Sampson PubMed.gov | PMID: 24237890