Purpose: This study examined the effects of mixed-methods resistance training on young and older men to determine whether similar increases in muscle power were elicited.
Methods: Effects of 10 wk of a periodized resistance-training program designed to increase muscle size, strength, and maximal power on isometric squat strength, time course of force development, muscle fiber characteristics, and muscle activation (iEMG), as well as force and power output during squat jumps, were compared in young (YM, 30 +/- 5 yr, N = 8) and older men (OM, 61 +/- 4 yr, N = 10).
Results: Isometric squat strength was higher in the YM compared with OM at all testing occasions and increased over the training period by 23 +/- 15% and 40 +/- 42% for the YM and OM, respectively. The early phase of the force-time curve was shifted upward in both groups over the course of the training. During the squat jumps, the YM produced higher force and power at all test occasions and at all loads tested compared with the OM. The YM increased power output by 15 +/- 14%, 33 +/- 16%, and 26 +/- 12%, and the OM by 7 +/- 5%, 36 +/- 23%, and 25 +/- 16% for the 17 kg, and 30% and 60% 1RM loads, respectively.
Conclusion: Although the results of this study confirm age-related reductions in muscle strength and power, the older men did demonstrate similar capacity to young men for increases in these variables via an appropriate periodized resistance-training program that includes rapid, high-power exercises.