Date of Award

Spring 2011

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Exercise Science and Nutrition


Exercise Science

First Advisor

Dr. Jason Miller

Second Advisor

Dr. Matthew Moran


The purpose of this study was to determine whether the back squat (BS) or deadlift (DL) is most similar to the countermovement jump (CMJ) in terms of peak muscular activation. The muscles assessed in this study were the erector spinae (ES), gluteus maximus (GM), biceps femoris (BF), vastus medialis (VM), and gastrocnemius (GN). These five muscles were chosen do to their involvement in all of these exercises. Ten college-aged males (24±1.18yrs) with a minimum of 1 year strength training experience volunteered for this study. Participants must have been strength trained and could BS and DL 1.5 x bodyweight. Results showed that only the peak muscular activation of the GN was significantly different (p<0.05) among all muscles between the BS (3.97mV) and CMJ (8.36mV). There were no significant differences between the DL (6.20mV) and CMJ in muscular activation. However when a Pearson Product Correlation was performed, the CMJ and DL showed a weak correlation among all muscles (ES=0.27, GM=0.42, BF=0.46, VM=0.45, GN=0.24). The CMJ and BS only showed a weak correlation among the ES, BF and GN (0.44, 0.22, and 0.32 respectively) and strong correlation for the GM and VM (r = 0.73, 0.77, respectively). This study suggests that in terms of peak muscular activation, the DL is more similar to the CMJ than the BS since no significant differences were found in muscular activation. However, muscle activation of the VM and GM during the BS was strongly correlated to the CMJ.