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J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Feb;26(2):497-505. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318220e6e4.

Dry-land strength training vs. electrical stimulation in sprint swimming performance.

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Laboratory of Exercise-Induced Physiological Adaptations (EA 3813), University of Poitiers, Poitiers, France.


This study was undertaken to compare the effects of dry-land strength training vs. an electrical stimulation program on swimmers. Twenty-four national-level swimmers were randomly assigned to 3 groups: the dry-land strength training program (S), the electrical stimulation training program (ES), and the control (C) group. The training program lasted 4 weeks. The subjects were evaluated before the training, at the end of the training program, and 4 weeks later. The outcome values ascertained were peak torque during arm extension at different velocities (from -60 to 180°·s(-1)) using an isokinetic dynamometer and performance, stroke rate, and stroke length during a 50-m front crawl. A significant increase in swimming velocity and peak torque was observed for both S and ES at the end of the training and 4 weeks later. Stroke length increased in the S group but not in the ES group. However, no significant differences in swimming velocity between S and ES groups were observed. No significant changes occurred in the C group. Programs combining swimming training with dry-land strength or electrical stimulation programs led to a similar gain in sprint performance and were more efficient than swimming alone.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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