Objectives: We hypothesized that progressive whole-body vibration (WBV) superimposed to progressive high intensity resistance training has greater effects on muscle cross-sectional area (CSA), muscle force of leg muscles, and jump performance than progressive high intensity resistance training alone.
Methods: Two groups of healthy male subjects performed either 6 weeks of Resistive Vibration Exercise (RVE, squats and heel raises with WBV, n=13) or Resistive Exercise (RE, squats and heel raises without WBV, n=13). Squats under RVE required indispensable weight loading on the forefoot to damp harmful vibrations to the head. Time, intervention, and interaction effects were analyzed.
Results: After 6 weeks of training, knee extensor CSA, isometric knee extension force, and counter movement jump height increased equally in both groups (time effect, P⟨0.001, P≤0.02, and P≤0.03, respectively), whereas only in RVE ankle plantar flexor CSA and isometric ankle plantar flexion force reached significance or a tendency, respectively, (time effect, P=0.015 and P=0.069, respectively; intervention effect also for the latter, P=0.006). Drop jump contact time did significantly more improve in RVE (interaction effect, P=0.042).
Conclusions: RVE showed better training effects than RE only in plantar flexor muscles. RVE seems to be suitable in professional sports with a special focus on calf muscles.