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Asian J Sports Med. 2016 Jan 16;7(2):e29247. doi: 10.5812/asjsm.29247. eCollection 2016 Jun.

A Comparison of Increases in Volume Load Over 8 Weeks of Low-Versus High-Load Resistance Training.

Author information

1
Department of Health Sciences, CUNY Lehman College, Bronx, USA.
2
McMaster University, Ontario, Canada.
3
Sport Performance Research Institute, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand.
4
Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals, Provo, USA.
5
Group of Study and Research in Metabolism, Nutrition, and Exercise, Londrina State University, Londrina, Brazil.
6
Kinesiology Program, Arizona State University, Arizona, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

It has been hypothesized that the ability to increase volume load (VL) via a progressive increase in the magnitude of load for a given exercise within a given repetition range could enhance the adaptive response to resistance training.

OBJECTIVES:

The purpose of this study was to compare changes in volume load (VL) over eight weeks of resistance training (RT) in high-versus low-load protocols.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Eighteen well-trained men were matched according to baseline strength were randomly assigned to either a low-load RT (LOW, n = 9) where 25 - 35 repetitions were performed per exercise, or a high-load RT (HIGH, n = 9) where 8 - 12 repetitions were performed per exercise. Both groups performed three sets of seven exercises for all major muscles three times per week on non-consecutive days.

RESULTS:

After adjusting for the pre-test scores, there was a significant difference between the two intervention groups on post-intervention total VL with a very large effect size (F (1, 15) = 16.598, P = .001, ηp(2) = .525). There was a significant relationship between pre-intervention and post-intervention total VL (F (1, 15) = 32.048, P < .0001, ηp(2) = .681) in which the pre-test scores explained 68% of the variance in the post-test scores.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study indicates that low-load RT results in greater accumulations in VL compared to high-load RT over the course of 8 weeks of training.

KEYWORDS:

Heavy Loads; Light Loads; Muscular Failure; Repetition Scheme

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