Thursday, May 10, 2012

Can Aerobic Training and Strength Training Complement Each Other?

The effect of concurrent training, which combines both strength and aerobic exercise, has been debated in the past.  A controversy exists as to whether the combination of the two forms of exercise in a training regimen is likely to enhance one’s overall increase in strength as compared to a regimen of only strength training.  It is an especially important issue for those hoping to maximize their performance.

A recent paper in the International Journal of Sport Medicine from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil, described research on 44 women in 4 different exercise groups.  The first group combined strength running with running; the second combined strength training with interval running training; the third combined strength training with cycling; and the fourth group only performed strength training.  Each group trained for 11 weeks, twice a week.  The researchers found no significant difference between groups when comparing initial and final measurements of maximal strength in knee extension, bench press and leg press exercises, endurance in knee extension and bench press exercises, and isometric and isokinetic peak torque of knee extension.  The absence of significant difference in strength based on the presence of aerobic training suggests that there is no interference effect when adding in aerobic exercise to a strength training regimen.

This research suggests that,if you are trying to maximize your performance for an event or sport that focuses on strength, you will not detract from your training by supplementing your workouts with aerobic exercise.

Read the abstract of the paper here.


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