Light Therapy Research – Physical Training & Exercise

A collection of light therapy research articles on the benefits of light therapy use for improving the results of physical training & exercise.

NOTE: Researchers use several terms to describe “light therapy”. Photobiomodulation, low level light therapy (LLLT), phototherapy, photon therapy, photo energy, heliotherapy, and sometimes red, blue or (near) infrared radiation are synonymous; they all refer to light therapy.


Effect of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) and light-emitting diodes (LEDT) applied during combined training on performance and post-exercise recovery: protocol for a randomized placebo-controlled trial.

May 20, 2017

Current study analyzing the effects of LLLT & LEDT on physical training performance & post-exercise recovery. The first study of its kind, with the aim of determining the effects of phototherapy and combined training on clinical, functional, and psychological outcomes, as well as on vascular endothelial growth factor.

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Light therapy improves athletic performance

The University of Florida ( Department of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology) has just published a study in the journal of athletic training, demonstrating the effectiveness of low level light therapy on athletic performance. The looked at 12 randomized controlled trials and the data showed that if this light procedure was applied immediately before exercise, then there were many benefits that were noticed. Among these benefits included, a reduction of fatigue which positively affected physical performance, and post-exercise recovery.

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Improving muscle performance in elite athletes with Light Therapy

This study, performed in order to demonstrate the effectiveness of light therapy on muscle activity, found that the simple addition of light, was able to cause an increase in the muscle torque at the beginning of the exercise and maintained the levels of lactate after resistance exercise. Therefore, the authors concluded that light therapy could be utilized in rehabilitation to improve muscle performance in elite athletes.

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Light therapy benefits during exercise

Light therapy has demonstrated benefits for use during exercise, and this study confirms the timing of the light applications. Researchers found that by applying light therapy (red and infrared spectrum) BEFORE the exercise, 2 benefits were seen; firstly, muscle performance was improved, and secondly, muscle recovery was accelerated.

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Low-level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) on muscle tissue: performance, fatigue and repair benefited by
the power of light

The use of low level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) has recently expanded to cover areas of medicine that were not previously thought of as the usual applications such as wound healing and inflammatory orthopedic conditions. One of these novel application areas is LLLT for muscle fatigue and muscle injury.

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Pre-conditioning with Low-Level Laser (Light) Therapy: Light Before the Storm

Pre-conditioning by ischemia, hyperthermia, hypothermia, hyperbaric oxygen (and numerous other modalities) is a rapidly growing area of investigation that is used in pathological conditions where tissue damage may be expected.

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Low level laser therapy for sports injuries

Our hospital has used LLLT in the treatment of athletes since 1990. We had a good result about LLLT for sports injuries. However, few articles have attempted to evaluate the efficacy of LLLT for sports injuries. The aims of this study were to evaluate the efficacy of LLLT for sports injuries.

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Does Phototherapy Enhance Skeletal Muscle Contractile Function and Postexercise Recovery? A Systematic Review

Recently, researchers have shown that phototherapy administered to skeletal muscle immediately before resistance exercise can enhance contractile function, prevent exercise-induced cell damage, and improve postexercise recovery of strength and function.

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Disclaimer: The content of this website is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as medical advice and should not be construed as such. Light devices are not intended to cure, treat, or prevent any disease or illness. If you have a disease or illness, consult with your physician or health care provider prior to using any light device. Use only as directed by manufacturer.