Higashihara, Ayako



Research Centers and Institutes, Institute of Physical Education (Hiyoshi)


Assistant Professor (Non-tenured)/Research Associate (Non-tenured)/Instructor (Non-tenured)

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Career 【 Display / hide

  • 2013.04

    Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Research Fellow

  • 2013.04

    Research Fellowship for Young Scientists of JSPS

  • 2017.04

    Waseda University, Faculty of Sport Sciences, 助手

  • 2017.04

    神奈川大学 人間科学部 非常勤講師

  • 2018.04

    Waseda University, Faculty of Sport Sciences, 助教

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Academic Background 【 Display / hide

  • 2003.04

    Waseda University, Faculty of Sport Sciences

    University, Graduated

  • 2007.04

    Waseda University, Faculty of Sport Sciences

    Graduate School, Completed, Master's course

  • 2009.04

    Waseda University, Faculty of Sport Sciences

    Graduate School, Completed, Doctoral course

Academic Degrees 【 Display / hide

  • Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Coursework, 2013.01

Licenses and Qualifications 【 Display / hide

  • 健康運動指導士, 2009.11

  • JATI-ATI(トレーニング指導者), 2016.12


Research Areas 【 Display / hide

  • Life Science / Orthopedics (スポーツ傷害)

  • Life Science / Sports sciences

  • Life Science / Physical education, and physical and health education

Research Keywords 【 Display / hide

  • スポーツ医学

  • スポーツ外傷

  • スポーツ科学

  • 筋生理学


Books 【 Display / hide

  • Differences in activation patterns of the hamstring muscles during sprinting

    Ayako Higashihara, Takashi Ono, Toru Fukubayashi, Sports Injuries and Prevention, 2015.01

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    © Springer Japan 2015. In this chapter, we evaluate the functional characteristics of the hamstring muscles during sprinting. During near maximal sprinting speed, the respective hamstring muscles exhibited very different characteristics of electromyographic (EMG) activation within the sprinting gait cycle. The activation demand of the BFlh muscles is high before and after foot contact due to their function as hip extensors, while the ST muscle shows high activation primarily during the control of knee extension and hip flexion in the mid-swing phase. The mechanism underlying these activation characteristics may involve architectural differences between the hamstring muscles, which likely reflect each muscle’s function during sprinting. A complex neuromuscular coordination pattern of the hamstring muscles during sprinting is accomplished by the utilisation and activation of each muscle’s specific functional differences.

Papers 【 Display / hide

  • Damage and recovery of the intrinsic and extrinsic foot muscles from running a full marathon

    Mako Fukano, Kento Nakagawa, Ayako Higashihara, Takayuki Inami, Takaya Narita

    Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports (Wiley)   2023.04

    ISSN  0905-7188

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    Purpose: To investigate the effects of full marathon running on intrinsic and extrinsic foot muscle damage and to determine the relationship with the height change of the longitudinal foot arch following full marathon completion. Methods: Magnetic resonance imaging-measured transverse relaxation time (T2) of the abductor hallucis (ABH), flexor digitorum brevis (FDB) and quadratus plantae (QP), flexor digitorum longus (FDL), tibialis posterior (TP), and flexor hallucis longus (FHL) from 22 collegiate runners were assessed before and 1, 3, and 8 days after full marathon running. The three-dimensional foot posture of 10 of the 22 runners was further obtained using a foot scanner system before and 1, 3, and 8 days after the marathon. Results: Marathon-induced increases in T2 were observed in the QP, FDL, TP, and FHL 1 day after the marathon (+7.5%, +4.7%, +6.7%, and +5.9%, respectively), with the increased T2 of TP persisting until 3 days after the marathon (+4.6%). T2 changes of FDL and FHL from pre-marathon to DAY 1 showed direct correlations with the corresponding change in the arch height ratio (r = 0.823, p = 0.003, and r = 0.658, p = 0.038). Conclusion: The damage and recovery response from a full marathon differed among muscles; QP, FDL, TP, and FHL increased T2 after the marathon, whereas ABH and FDB did not. In addition, T2 changes in FDL and FHL and the arch height ratio change were correlated. Our results suggest that the extrinsic foot muscles could be more susceptible to damage than the intrinsic during marathon running.

  • Differences in the recruitment properties of the corticospinal pathway between the biceps femoris and rectus femoris muscles.

    Ayako Higashihara, Kento Nakagawa, Genki Futatsubashi, Hirofumi Sekiguchi, Yasuharu Nagano, Norikazu Hirose

    Brain research (Brain Research)  1790   147963 - 147963 2022.06

    Accepted,  ISSN  0006-8993

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    The neuromuscular activity in the hamstring and quadriceps muscles is vital for rapid force control during athletic movements. This study aimed to investigate the recruitment properties of the corticospinal pathway of the biceps femoris long head (BFlh) and rectus femoris (RF) muscles. Thirty-two male subjects were participated in this study. Corticospinal excitability was investigated for BFlh and RF during the isometric knee flexion and extension tasks, respectively, using transcranial magnetic stimulation. A sigmoidal relationship was observed between the stimulus intensity and amplitude of motor-evoked potentials and characterized by a plateau value, maximum slope, and threshold. Compared with RF, BFlh had a significantly lower plateau value (P < 0.001, d = 1.17), maximum slope (P < 0.001, r = 0.79), and threshold (P = 0.003, d = 0.62). The results showed that the recruitment properties of the corticospinal pathway significantly differ between BFlh and RF. These results reveal that when a sudden large force is required during athletic movements, the RF can produce force through a rapid increase in the recruitment of motor units. The BFlh, on the other hand, requires larger or more synchronized motor commands for enabling the proper motor unit behavior to exert large forces. These differences in the neurophysiological factors between the hamstrings and quadriceps can have a substantial effect on the balance of force generation during athletic activities.

  • A study on mental health and social skills of university students under the COVID-19 outbreak:

    TERAOKA Eishin, MURAYAMA Mitsuyoshi, SASAKI Reiko, INAMI Takayuki, HIGASHIHARA Ayako, NOGUCHI Kazuyuki, KATO Koji, NAGATA Naoya, FUKUSHI Norifumi

    Japanese Journal of Physical Education and Sport for Higher Education (Japanese Association of University Physical Eduation and Sports)  19 ( 0 ) 84 - 93 2022

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    <p>There is a broad understanding that the primary benefit of in-person-teaching of university physical education classes develops students’ physical and mental health. However, to adapt to restricted mobility due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most universities had to cancel in-person classes in the spring term (first semester) 2020. While some universities decided to cancel physical education classes, others shifted online. There are concerns about the adverse effects on students’ mental health and social skills during this unusual situation. Subsequently, our university returned to in-person teaching of physical education classes from the autumn term (second semester) 2020. Within this context, in-person teaching is promising for the expected educational benefits of university physical education. Therefore, this study aimed to examine the effects of in-person physical education classes on students’ mental health and social skills. The study recruited 455 students (230 males and 225 females) in our university. A total of 316 students attended in-person physical education classes (PE group), and 139 students did not register for the classes (non-PE group). We administered web-based questionnaires to the participants pre- and post-the 2020 autumn term. The questionnaires consisted of a survey of physical activity opportunities, the WHO-5 Well-Being Index (WHO-5), and the Kikuchi’s Scale of Social Skills (KiSS-18). The results revealed the following: (1) The two-way mixed ANOVA results showed that the Time x Group interaction effect was significant for the WHO-5 and KiSS-18. Specifically, the PE group students improved in the WHO-5 score, while students in the non-PE group declined in the KiSS-18 score; (2) Concerning the status of belonging to university athletics club or sports club, the Time x Group interaction effect was significant for the KiSS-18. Expressly, the non-PE group who belong to university athletics club or sports club significantly declined in the KiSS-18 score; (3) The analysis including the type of sport showed no significant Time x Group interaction effect for the WHO-5 and KiSS-18. We concluded that attending in-person physical education classes had a significant positive effect on enhancing their psychological wellbeing and social skills. Notably, attending physical education classes, rather than the type of sport and belonging to a university athletics club or sports club, was one of the most influential factors in promoting and maintaining mental health and social skills.</p>

  • コロナ禍による体育実技の休講措置後の再開が大学一年生の身体活動とライフスキルに与える影響

    寺岡 英晋, 村山 光義, 佐々木 玲子, 稲見 崇孝, 東原 綾子, 野口 和行, 加藤 幸司, 永田 直也, 福士 徳文

    体育研究所紀要 (慶應義塾大学体育研究所)  61 ( 1 ) 15 - 25 2022

    ISSN  02866951

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  • Greater knee varus angle and pelvic internal rotation after landing are predictive factors of a non-contact lateral ankle sprain.

    Shinshiro Mineta, Takayuki Inami, Takuma Hoshiba, Ayako Higashihara, Tsukasa Kumai, Suguru Torii, Norikazu Hirose

    Physical therapy in sport : official journal of the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Sports Medicine (Physical Therapy in Sport)  50   59 - 64 2021.04

    Research paper (scientific journal), Joint Work,  ISSN  1466-853X

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    OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to clarify the kinematic, kinetic characteristics associated with lateral ankle sprain. DESIGN: A 16-month prospective cohort study. SETTING: Laboratory. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 179 college athletes. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Joint kinematics, moment during single-leg landing tasks, and ankle laxity were measured. The attendance of each participating team, injury mechanism, existence of body contact, presence of orthosis, with or without medical diagnosis, and periods of absence were recorded. RESULTS: Twenty-nine participants incurred lateral ankle sprain during non-contact motion. The Cox regression analysis revealed that greater knee varus peak angle (hazard ratio: 1.16 [95% confidence interval: 1.10-1.22], p < 0.001) and greater pelvic internal rotation peak angle toward the support leg were associated with lateral ankle sprain (hazard ratio: 1.08 [95% confidence interval: 1.02-1.15], p = 0.009). The cut-off values for each predictive factor were -0.17° (area under the curve = 0.89, p < 0.001) and 6.63° (area under the curve = 0.74, p < 0.001), respectively. CONCLUSIONS: A greater knee varus peak angle and pelvic internal rotation peak angle after single-leg landing are predictive factors for lateral ankle sprain.

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Papers, etc., Registered in KOARA 【 Display / hide

Reviews, Commentaries, etc. 【 Display / hide

  • 硬化した筋の回復を加速させる方策 経口補水液と特殊シューズを用いた戦略的リカバリー

    稲見 崇孝, 東原 綾子, 中川 剣人, 飯塚 哲司, 前道 俊宏, 吉村 茜, 山口 翔大, 深野 真子, 伊藤 瑳良, 神武 直彦, 成田 崇矢, 村山 光義

    日本レーザー治療学会誌 (日本レーザー治療学会)  18 ( 2 ) 42 - 47 2019.12

    ISSN  1347-4375

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  • Changes in muscle hardness after a full marathon appear different even intramuscularly.

    Takayuki Inami, Kento Nakagawa, Mako Fukano, Takahisa Yonezu, Ayako Higashihara, Satoshi Iizuka, Takaya Narita, Mitsuyoshi Murayama

    The Journal of sports medicine and physical fitness (The Journal of sports medicine and physical fitness)  59 ( 6 ) 1094 - 1095 2019.06

    Joint Work,  ISSN  0022-4707

  • マラソンで生じる筋ダメージの評価 : 骨格筋画像研究の視点から (January Special マラソン研究 : 東京2020対策からリカバリーはじめマラソンの科学を探る)

    東原 綾子

    Sportsmedicine : media of communication for sportsmedicine people = 月刊スポーツメディスン : プロフェッショナルが読むスポーツ医科学総合誌 (ブックハウス・エイチディ)  31 ( 1 ) 18 - 22 2019.01

    Other, Single Work,  ISSN  0916-359X

  • フルマラソンにおける身体衝撃の経時変化

    永野 康治, 東原 綾子, 中川 剣人, 成田 崇矢, 稲見 崇孝

    Congress of the Japanese Physical Therapy Association (JAPANESE PHYSICAL THERAPY ASSOCIATION)  46 ( 0 ) F - 98-F-98 2019

    Other, Joint Work,  ISSN  0289-3770

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    <p>【はじめに,目的】</p><p> 本研究ではフルマラソンを例に,身体衝撃を反映する体幹加速度を経時的に計測し,長時間のスポーツ活動における身体衝撃の変化を明らかにすることを目的とした。</p><p>【方法】</p><p> 健常成人男性4名を対象とした。フルマラソン走行時に体幹背面上部にGPS付き加速度センサを装着し,3軸加速度をスタートからゴールまで計測した。その内,カーブがなく平坦な7.5km,17.5km,27km,36km地点をGPSデータより特定し,各地点における100歩を解析対象とした。加速度データより1歩毎の最大合成加速度(G),および走行スピード(km/h)を算出した。地点間の加速度の差を,走行スピードを共変量とした共分散分析を用いて検討した。</p><p>【倫理的配慮】</p><p> 日本女子体育大学研究倫理委員会の承認を得た後,対象者から文章にて説明し同意を得て実施した。</p><p>【結果】</p><p> 地点毎の加速度は7.5km:4.2(0.6)G,17.5km:3.9(0.6)G,27km:3.7(0.5)G,36km:4.1(0.8)G[平均値(標準偏差)]であった。共分散分析の結果,地点間に有意な主効果が認められ(F(3,1573)=72.037,p<0.001,偏η2=0.12),体幹加速度は7.5km地点にて17.5kmおよび27km地点より有意に大きく,36km地点にて他3地点より有意に大きかった(いずれもp<0.001)。</p><p>【考察】</p><p> 身体衝撃の指標であるフルマラソン中の体幹加速度はレース中盤で低下した後,終板で再び増加した。この結果は,レース終板における疲労や動作変化に起因する衝撃緩衝能の低下を反映したと考えられる。</p>

  • ハムストリングス肉離れ既往脚におけるスプリント時の股関節伸展筋の筋活動および走動作特性

    東原 綾子, 小野 高志, 徳武 岳, 倉持 梨恵子, 國田 泰弘, 永野 康治, 広瀬 統一

    日本臨床スポーツ医学会誌 ((一社)日本臨床スポーツ医学会)  26 ( 4 ) S203 - S203 2018.11

    ISSN  1346-4159

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Presentations 【 Display / hide

  • Investigating sprint kinematics for the prevention of hamstring strain injury

    Ayako Higashihara

    9th World Congress of Biomechanics, 


    Oral presentation (invited, special)

  • スポーツ外傷予防・再発予防に対するリコンディショニングの科学的知見(ハムストリングス肉離れに対するリコンディショニング)




Research Projects of Competitive Funds, etc. 【 Display / hide

  • マルチスポーツ活動によるスポーツ障害予防効果および身体機能変化の検証


    Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research, Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (C), No Setting

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  • Change in neuromuscular function following return to sports after a hamstring muscle strain injury


    Waseda University, Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research, Higashihara Ayako, Grant-in-Aid for Early-Career Scientists, No Setting

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    This study aimed to investigate the function of the hamstrings following injury and the recruitment properties of the corticospinal pathway of thigh muscles. In the case of some athletes, the function of the hamstring and its agonist muscles following injury may not have been entirely recovered despite rehabilitation, suggesting the importance of accurately evaluating the function of the hamstring muscles in rehabilitation practices. In addition, the recruitment properties of the corticospinal pathway in thigh muscles were clarified. These findings can aid the development of training approaches for athletes, to improve motor function or prevent injury through a better understanding of neuromuscular characteristics contributing to thigh muscle function. Future studies should determine whether these activation deficits after hamstring strain injury are a risk factor for reinjury to better understand the mechanisms of neuromuscular inhibition, including the central nervous system.

  • Modulations in corticospinal excitability accompanying contraction-mode conversion during joint movements


    Niigata University of Health and Welfare, Grant-in-Aid for Young Scientists (B), No Setting

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    ヒトの身体運動は,筋張力を発揮しながらも外力によって筋が伸張される伸張性収縮,筋が短縮しながら張力を発揮する短縮性収縮,緊張の変化を伴わない等張性収縮によって遂行されている.そして,収縮中の筋における皮質脊髄路興奮性は筋の収縮様式に依存して変化することが先行研究によって明らかになっている.しかし,これまでは筋収縮様式それぞれの局面での検討はなされているが,関節運動に伴う皮質脊髄路興奮性変化については検討されていない.本研究では,本研究では,手関節運動における筋収縮様式の変化に伴い橈側手根屈筋の皮質脊髄路興奮性がどのように変化するかを明らかにすることを目的とした.対象は健常成人8名であった.座位にて右手部を中間位にて実験装置に固定し,右手関節掌屈方向に対し抵抗が生じるように滑車を介して重り(最大手関節掌屈筋力の20%)を設定した.対象者は手関節掌屈位より重りに抵抗しながら下ろす伸張性手関節掌屈動作(LEN)を開始し,手関節背屈位に達した後に重りを持ち上げる短縮性手関節掌屈動作(SHO)への転換を素早く行った. LENからSHOへの転換前後におけるランダムなタイミングで活動時運動閾値の1.3倍の経頭蓋磁気刺激(TMS)を左大脳皮質一次運動野に与え,右橈側手根屈筋から運動誘発電位(MEP)を記録した.運動課題中の背景筋活動はTMSを与える直前20msの筋電図の平均値によって評価した.その結果,手関節運動方向の転換前後15°の範囲において,LENにおける橈骨手根屈筋の背景筋活動はSHOと比較して有意に高値を示したが(p<0.01),このときのMEP振幅値に有意な変化は認められなかった.本研究結果より,手関節運動時の筋収縮様式の変化に伴う橈骨手根屈筋の皮質脊髄路興奮性は収縮様式依存性を有し,伸張性収縮期における皮質脊髄路興奮性は抑制性の修飾を受けている可能性が示唆された.

  • ハムストリングス肉離れ受傷メカニズム解明への科学的基礎


    日本学術振興会, 科学研究費助成事業 特別研究員奨励費, 特別研究員奨励費, No Setting

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  • ハムストリングス肉離れ受傷メカニズムの解明と予防法確立への示唆


    日本学術振興会, 科学研究費助成事業 特別研究員奨励費, 特別研究員奨励費, Principal investigator

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Awards 【 Display / hide

  • 濱野吉生記念褒賞

    東原 綾子, 2010.03, 早稲田大学スポーツ科学学術院

  • 日本臨床スポーツ医学会学会賞

    東原 綾子, 2009.11, 日本臨床スポーツ医学会


Courses Taught 【 Display / hide











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Committee Experiences 【 Display / hide

  • 2022.04

    日本トレーニング科学会機関誌 Journal of Training Science for Exercise and Sport(トレーニング科学) 編集委員, 日本トレーニング科学会