We examined the changes in myosin heavy-chain (HC) isoforms and fibre-type composition in rat soleus muscle using both myosin adenosine triphosphatase staining and sodium dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) analyses during the recovery period after 4 weeks of hindlimb suspension. Although there was no change in type IIc fibres after the suspension, an increase in this type of fibres was observed during the 1- to 4-week recovery period. The increase in type IIc fibres was considered to be due to a shift from type IIa to IIc fibres. The SDS-PAGE analysis revealed the presence of the HC IId isoform, which was not observed in the control muscle, after a 4-week hindlimb suspension. The HC IId isoform gradually decreased over 3 weeks of recovery and disappeared in the 4th week of recovery after the suspension. These results suggest that the hypogravity conditions induced by hindlimb suspension stimulated the synthesis of the HC IId isoform, whereas an increase in mechanical load to the muscle accelerated the degradation of the HC IId isoform and the synthesis of type IIc fibres during the recovery period after hindlimb suspension.