Background: Bilateral squat exercise is widely used in resistance training (RT) programs to increase lower limb strength and muscle mass, but this exercise does not result in significant hypertrophy of the hamstrings. It has been speculated that stretching between sets with a certain degree of tension results in muscle hypertrophy, while acute stretching could decrease performance during maximal contractions.Objective: This study investigated the acute effects of hamstring stretching before bilateral squatting on muscle thickness (MT), electromyography (EMG), and total training volume (TTV) on exercise performance.Methods: Fourteen resistance-trained young men, with ∼7.5 years of RT experience, performed the 10 repetition maximum (RM) for the barbell squat in two sessions (test–retest) separated by period after 48 h. Participants engaged in two resistance exercise conditions separated by a 1 week recovery interval: one session employed hamstrings stretching and the other did not include hamstrings stretching. Before and after each resistance exercise session, the thickness of the quadriceps muscles and biceps femoris long head were obtained by ultrasound imaging. Moreover, the EMG amplitudes for the quadriceps muscles, biceps femoris, and iliocostalis muscles were recorded during back squat performance. The TTV was also evaluated for each exercise session.Results: A significant increase in MT was observed after every set in both conditions for the evaluated quadriceps muscles (all p < 0.05), while for the biceps femoris, this effect was found only in the stretching condition (p < 0.05). EMG activity increased in the rectus femoris, vastus lateralis, and vastus medialis for the stretching condition. For the non-stretching condition, activity only increased in the vastus lateralis and medialis. There was no difference in EMG activity for the biceps femoris and iliocostalis in both conditions.Conclusion: Stretching the hamstrings immediately before each set of the back squat can be used to acutely increase biceps femoris thickness without impairing squat performance.
BackgroundThe pre-exhaustion (PreEx) method is used as a resistance training (RT) method to increase muscle mass, yet the chronic effects of this method are poorly understood.ObjectiveAlthough readily prescribed as a RT method for promotion of muscle hypertrophy, few researches give light to gains made after chronic PreEx RT. Therefore, we compared the effects of traditional versus PreEx RT programs on muscle strength, body composition, and muscular hypertrophy in adult males.MethodsUntrained subjects (age: 31.37 ± 6.83 years; height: 175.29 ± 5.52 cm; body mass: 82.04 ± 13.61 kg; 1RM leg press: 339.86 ± 61.17 kg; 1RM leg extension: 121.71 ± 11.93 kg) were submitted to 9 weeks of RT with weekly sessions. Traditional (TRT) group (n = 12) performed three sets at 45° of leg press exercise at 75% of 1RM, PreEx group (n = 12) completed a set to failure on a leg extension machine prior to the leg press, and the control (CON) group (n = 7) did not train. Maximum strength, muscle thickness, and body composition were analyzed.ResultsPreEx group increased in maximal strength on leg press (16 ± 8%) and leg extension (17 ± 11%), while the TRT group improved by 15 ± 9 and 11 ± 4%, respectively. The thickness of the quadriceps muscles increased for both intervention groups. Specifically, the post-training thickness of the vastus lateralis was significantly higher for PreEx (55%) compared to the CON group. The TRT group presented a greater loss of total and thigh fat mass when compared with the PreEx method. These results were found in the presence of a lower training load for the PreEx group.ConclusionThe PreEx training can decrease the total training volume while maintaining results in strength and hypertrophy when comparing to TRT. However, TRT may be optimal if the goal is to decrease fat mass.
DOI : 10.3389/fphys.2019.01424 Anahtar Kelimeler :
training load, training efficiency, pre-fatigue, muscle thickness, resistance exercise, muscle strength
ISSN: 1664-042X Cilt: 10