Purpose: The purpose of this investigation was to compare the impact of power training and strength-power training on the load-power relationship in the jump squat.
Methods: Twenty-six recreationally trained male subjects were randomly assigned to either a power training group (P; N=10), a strength-power training group (SP; N=8), or a control group (C; N=8). The P group trained for 12 wk, performing seven sets of six jump squats with the optimal load for maximal power output (body mass only, no external load), whereas the SP group performed five sets of six jump squats with the optimal load for maximal power output (body mass only, no external load) and three sets of three squats with 90% of their one-repetition maximum (1RM). Work performed by the P and SP subjects was equivalent throughout the 12 wk of training. Peak power relative to body mass (PP), jump height (JH), peak force relative to body mass (PF), and peak velocity (PV) during the jump squat were examined across loads of body mass (BM) and 20, 40, 60, and 80 kg at week 0 (baseline) and after weeks 6 (midtest) and 12 (posttest).
Results: After training, the P group significantly increased PP at BM and 20 kg, whereas the SP group significantly increased PP output across all loading conditions. Similarly, jump height was significantly increased by the P group at the lighter loads (BM, 20 kg, and 40 kg) and by the SP group at all loads. Whereas significant improvements in maximal power output and jump height at BM were observed in both P and SP groups, no difference in maximal power output or maximal jump height existed between the training groups.
Conclusion: Combined lower-body strength-power training is effective as power training for improving maximum jump height and maximum power output in the jump squat, and it is more effective than power training at producing all-around (i.e., from BM to 80 kg) improvements in the load-power relationship of the jump squat.