Postactivation Potentiation Improves Acute Resistance Exercise Performance and Muscular Force in Trained Men

J Strength Cond Res. 2021 May 1;35(5):1357-1363. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000002897.


Conrado de Freitas, M, Rossi, FE, Colognesi, LA, de Oliveira, JVNS, Zanchi, NE, Lira, FS, Cholewa, JM, and Gobbo, LA. Postactivation potentiation improves acute resistance exercise performance and muscular force in trained men. J Strength Cond Res 35(5): 1357-1363, 2021-The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of heavy back squat (90% one repetition maximum [1RM]) postactivation potentiation (PAP) on acute resistance exercise performance and force production in recreationally trained men, and to verify the relationship between maximal strength and the PAP response. Ten resistance-trained men randomly completed 4 experimental trials: (a) back squats without PAP (No-PAP), (b) back squats with PAP, (c) maximum voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC) of the quadriceps without PAP, and (d) MVIC with PAP. Back squats were performed with 4 sets at 70% of 1 RM with 2 minutes of rest interval. The number of squats repetitions performed was recorded for each set, and a total number of repetitions were calculated to analyze performance. Maximum voluntary isometric contraction was measured using electronic dynamometer, and the peak force and mean force were recorded. Blood lactate concentration was analyzed presquat and postsquat exercise. Repetitions performed in the first set was significantly (p < 0.001) greater in the PAP condition (22.00 ± 5.14) compared with No-PAP (15.50 ± 5.10), which resulted in significantly (p = 0.001) more total repetitions performed in the PAP (56.20 ± 17.3) condition compared with No-PAP (48.80 ± 14.5). Maximum voluntary isometric contraction peak was higher in PAP than in No-PAP (PAP = 765.7 ± 147.8 vs. No-PAP = 696.8 ± 131.5 N, p = 0.006). No significant correlations were observed between back squat 1RM relative to body mass and the PAP response in squat and MVIC. There were no significant differences in lactate concentration between conditions. In conclusion, PAP resulting from a heavy load prior back squat exercise improved total volume during resistance exercise. In addition, PAP was effective to increase force production during MVIC, but there was no relationship between relative 1RM values and the PAP response in trained men.

MeSH terms

  • Exercise
  • Humans
  • Isometric Contraction
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength
  • Muscle, Skeletal
  • Quadriceps Muscle
  • Resistance Training*