Neuromuscular and metabolic responses to three different resistance exercise methods

Asian J Sports Med. 2014 Mar;5(1):30-8. doi: 10.5812/asjsm.34229. Epub 2013 Oct 29.


Purpose: The aim of this study was to compare the effect of resistance exercise with three different methods on integrated electromyography (IEMG) and metabolic responses in recreational athletes.

Methods: Twenty four males (mean 23.59±0.87 years) were randomly assigned to three experimental groups. Participants performed knee extension exercises: Slow (SL: 3-3, 3s for each concentric and eccentric action with 50% of 1 RM), Normal (NH: 1-1, 1 s for each concentric and eccentric action 80% of 1 RM) and Traditional (TH: 2-4, 2s for concentric and 4s for eccentric action with 80% of 1 RM). Plasma lactate, glucose and triglyceride concentration and IEMG was measured before and immediately after performing four sets of resistance exercise.

Results: Each method significantly decreased IEMG (P<0.05), but there was no significant difference between groups. Lactate was increased following TH and NH more than SL method (P<0.05). Each method significantly increased plasma glucose (P<0.05). Work considering time under tension (workTUT) was higher (P<0.05) during TH method than the other methods and during SL it was higher than NH method (P<0.05). Volume load was higher (P<0.05) during NH than the other two methods and during TH it was higher than SL method (P<0.05).

Conclusion: These results indicate that exercise intensity during the resistance exercise is important for the enhancement of lactate responses, but the slow resistance exercise method could induce acute neuromuscular response as much as high intensity methods. It seems that this method will be advantageous for those who want to increase acute neuromuscular changes with low exercise intensity and volume.

Keywords: Lactate; Metabolic Stress Response; Motor Unit; Recruitment; Resistance Exercise.