Effects of 4 weeks of traditional resistance training vs. superslow strength training on early phase adaptations in strength, flexibility, and aerobic capacity in college-aged women

J Strength Cond Res. 2011 Nov;25(11):3006-13. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318212e3a2.


This study compared SuperSlow resistance training (SRT) to traditional resistance training (TRT) during early phase adaptations in strength, aerobic capacity, and flexibility in college-aged women. Subjects were randomly assigned to SRT (n = 14); TRT (n = 13); or control (CON; n = 8) groups. To equalize training times, TRT trained 3 times per week for 25 minutes each session, whereas SRT trained twice a week for 35 minutes each session. Both groups trained for 4 weeks, whereas the CON group maintained normal daily activities. Workouts consisted of 5 exercises: shoulder press, chest press, leg press, low row, and lat pull down. The SRT group completed 1 set of each exercise at 50% 1RM until momentary failure with a 10-second concentric and a 10-second eccentric phase. The TRT group completed 3 sets of 8 repetitions at 80% 1RM for each exercise, with 4 seconds of contraction time for each repetition. Groups were statistically similar at baseline. There was a significant (p ≤ 0.01) time main effect for flexibility with the greatest improvements occurring for the training groups (SRT 14.7% and TRT 11%). All strength tests had significant (p ≤ 0.01) time main effects but no group or group by time interactions. Both training groups had large percent improvements in strength compared to CON, but the large variability associated with the SRT group resulted in only the TRT group being significantly different from the CON group. In conclusion, percent improvements were similar for the TRT and SRT groups, but only the TRT group reached statistical significance for the strength improvements, and both groups were equally effective for improving flexibility.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Muscle Strength / physiology*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology
  • Physical Endurance / physiology
  • Range of Motion, Articular / physiology*
  • Resistance Training / methods*
  • Young Adult