The bioenergetics of paralyzed muscles of spastic paraplegic patients under functional electrical stimulation (FES) was studied in vivo using 31P NMR. The protocol included rest, 3 min of induced tetanic isometric contraction through surface electrodes and 40 min of recovery. The continuous stimulation, the force recording and the 31P NMR measurements were sampled simultaneously inside the whole body imager. Normal values were found for the phosphorous metabolite ratios at rest. During contraction, prominent changes were detected including: a) accumulation of inorganic phosphate (Pi) accompanied by an unusually strong signal in the phosphomonoester (PME) region, b) phosphocreatine (PCr) decline, and c) a decrease in the intracellular pH. In the following recovery period the physiological state of the muscle was monitored and quantitated by 31P NMR. No metabolic and mechanical irreversible damage was detected in the paraplegics' muscles activated by FES under our experimental conditions.