Research presentation

Martin Björklund

Research presentation

Martin Björklund

Researcher, associate professor of physiotherapy

Research subject: Occupational Health Sciences

Registered Physical Therapist 1986
Ph.D. in Sports Medicine 2004
Associate Professor, Physiotherapy, Faculty of Medicine, Umeå university, 2012


  • Reliability and validity of a new questionnaire for symptoms and functional limitations in subjects with neck pain
  • The effect of neck coordination training on sensorimotor function, symptoms and self-rated health and functioning for non-specific neck-shoulder pain
  • Rehabilitation of people with neck pain. Effects of individualized treatment based on prognostic indicators and tests of functioning
  • Range of movement


My thesis consists of two parts, including 6 original papers. The first part attempts at expanding the knowledge on the effects of prolonged repetitive low-intensity work on proprioception. A simulated occupational setting was used to test the effects of low-intensity repetitive arm work on the shoulder proprioception in healthy subjects.

The results showed that the repetitive work to fatigue diminished the shoulder proprioception; the working time as well as the retention of subjective fatigue were partly related to the extent of changed proprioception. The findings indicate that, the longer one works to reach subjective fatigue, the longer the sensation is retained, and the greater the impairment of the position sense acuity.

The second part of the thesis explores the effects of muscle stretching on sensory mechanisms and nociception. Results showed that there was no effect of acute muscle stretching on the proprioception. A new method for testing muscle stretchability proved valid and reliable. A two-week stretching regimen increased the tolerance to stretch torque, but the range of motion remained unchanged. Finally, the experimental animal study showed that muscle stretching partly acted on the same dorsal horn neurons that responded to chemical stimulus of muscle nociceptors, and that the stretching could counteract the cell reaction induced by the chemical stimulus. This suggests that physiological static muscle stretch has the ability to counteract the response of the nociceptive dorsal horn neurons.

Published by: Camilla Haglund Page responsible: Magnus Isaksson Updated: 2020-02-12
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