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Strength and balance, the influence of far-infrared light

Strength and balance, the influence of far-infrared light

A study of trail runners was carried out during two 21.6-kilometre races.

It measured strength, proprioception and subjective fatigue parameters before, during and after the trail to identify the effects of recovery.

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Article summary

Study on the impact of far-infrared radiation

Trail running is a physically demanding sport which can lead to muscle fatigue and postural instability. In a recent study, researchers investigated whether STIMCARE patches could help alleviate these effects.

The study involved 16 trail runners who were randomly assigned to a STIMCARE patch group and a placebo patch group during two 21.6 kilometer runs. The STIMCARE patches were designed to reflect infrared radiation emitted by the body back into the body.

The results showed that STIMCARE patches were effective in delaying and limiting the loss of muscle strength during running (see study abstract at end of article). STIMCARE patches also help maintain postural balance.

The researchers concluded that STIMCARE patches could potentially benefit athletes by helping them maintain strength and balance, which could lead to improved performance and a reduced risk of injury.

What is a STIMCARE patch?

STIMCARE patches are small adhesive patches containing ground metal oxides capable of reflecting far-infrared light. Far-infrared radiation has been shown to have a number of beneficial effects on the body, including reducing inflammation, improving blood circulation and promoting muscle recovery.

When patches are applied to the skin, they absorb heat (infrared radiation) from the body and re-emit far-infrared radiation back into the body.

Find out more about STIMCARE patches

How do far-infrared patches work?

The infrared radiation emitted by the patches helps to increase blood circulation and oxygen supply to the muscles. This can help reduce muscle fatigue and improve performance.


The STIMCARE patch study is promising, but further research is needed to confirm the results.

If you're an athlete looking for ways to improve your performance and reduce your risk of injury, don't hesitate to use STIMCARE patches!

Abstract of the study to be published :
The influence of far infrared on trail-running strength and posture

Key words: Infrared; Trail-running; Fatigue; Neuromuscular

Maxime Chamoux1,2, Laurent Mourot3, Gregory Doucende4, Alizée Santannac1, Arnaud Tortel2, Aurélien Empereur2

1 Université de Perpignan Via Domitia, Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire Performance Santé en Environnement de Montagne (LIPSEM), UR-4604, 7 Avenue Pierre de Coubertin, Font Romeu, 66120, France

2 Tortel industries, Stimcare, Dieulefit, 26220, France

3 Prognostic markers and regulatory factors of cardiac and vascular diseases and Plateforme EPSI, University of Franche-Comté, Besançon, EA 3920, France

4 LIBM, Inter-university Laboratory of Human Movement Science, University Savoie Mont Blanc, Chambéry, France


The alternation of ascents and descents, often on unstable terrain, encountered during trail running contributes to the development of neuromuscular and postural fatigue (Degache et al., 2014; Giandolini et al., 2016). For several years, ground metal oxides embedded in patches have been used to reflect and redirect the infrared (IR) radiation emitted by the human body towards the interior. These devices can be used to delay the onset of muscle fatigue in animals (Ting-Kai Leung et al., 2011) or to limit postural disturbances in gymnasts (Cian et al., 2015). The aim of this study was to assess whether the use of Stimcare-eNOsyntex™ (SC) patches could limit the neuromuscular fatigue associated with trail-running.

Theoretical and methodological framework

16 traileurs (maximum oxygen consumption - VO2max - at 1850m = 65.3 ± 7.24, age = 21 ± 5.81 years; height = 176.13 ± 3.52 cm; weight = 65.31 ± 7.24 kg) voluntarily took part in the study. They completed in a randomized fashion (single blind) 2 runs of 21.6 km with 630 m of positive elevation gain, separated by a minimum of 7 days, wearing either 21 SC patches (eNOsyntex™, Stimcare, France; maximum emission power = 178w/m2 between 7.5 and 13 μm) distributed on different key points (legs, wrists, stomach and back)(Sheng-xing, 2017) or 21 placebo patches (CTRL). Each run consisted of 6 loops of 3.6 km with 105m of positive elevation gain, performed at a heart rate corresponding to 85% of VO2max. Before (PRE), after 3 laps (MID) and within 5 min of stopping the run (POST), maximal isometric quadriceps strength was assessed (Leg control, Mtraining, France). Maintenance of bipodal posture on the medio-lateral axis was assessed for 30 seconds (force platforms, Vald Performance, Australia).

Results and discussion

A force loss of 8% was observed between PRE and MID with CTRL (p=0.02), whereas it was only 1.6% with the SC patch (p=0.94). In POST, force loss was 13% for CTRL (p=0.001) versus 5.9 % (p= 0.021) for SC, significantly higher for CTRL (p=0.038). Wearing SC patches therefore delays and limits loss of strength during trail running. An increase in medio-lateral displacement was observed only for CTRL (p=0.04; SC, p= 0.64). Nonetheless, post hoc tests after Bonferroni correction revealed no difference between CTRL and SC.

(PRE-MID: p= 0.08; PRE-POST: p= 0.3; MID-POST: p=0.9). This result shows that wearing the SC patches limits the disruption to postural balance.

Conclusion and outlook

The results obtained show that eNOsyntex™ patches delay and limit the loss of muscle strength, while promoting the maintenance of balance in trail runners. This suggests that SC patches could act on both the performance and health of trail runners. Nevertheless, future research will need to confirm these results and highlight the mechanisms potentially involved.


Cian, C., Gianocca, V., Barraud, P. A., Guerraz, M., & Bresciani, J. P. (2015). Bioceramic fabrics improve

Quiet standing posture and handstand stability in expert gymnasts. Gait & Posture, 42(4), 419-423.

Degache, F., Van Zaen, J., Oehen, L., Guex, K., Trabucchi, P., & Millet, G. (2014). Alterations in postural

control during the world's most challenging mountain ultra-marathon. PloS One, 9(1), e84554.

Giandolini, M., Vernillo, G., Samozino, P., Horvais, N., Edwards, W. B., Morin, J.-B., & Millet, G. Y.

(2016). Fatigue associated with prolonged graded running. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 116(10), 1859-1873.

Sheng-xing, M. (2017). Nitric Oxide Signaling Molecules in Acupuncture Points: Toward Mechanisms

of Acupuncture. Chinese journal of integrative medicine, 23(11), 812-815.

Ting-Kai Leung, Chi-Ming Lee, Shih-Yin Tsai, Yi-Chien Chen, & Jo-Shui Chao. (2011). A Pilot Study of

Ceramic Powder Far-Infrared Ray Irradiation (cFIR) on Physiology: Observation of Cell Cultures and Amphibian Skeletal Muscle. The Chinese Journal of Physiology, 54(4).

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Meet Rémi Senal

On the occasion of the French Full Contact Championships, we interviewed Rémi Senal, a fan of STIMCARE products.


Strength and balance, the influence of far-infrared light

A study of trail runners was carried out during two 21.6-kilometre races.

It measured strength, proprioception and subjective fatigue parameters before, during and after the trail to identify the effects of recovery.

Read the report

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