Public Library of Science
School of Medical and Health Sciences
Background: The importance of concurrent exercise order for improving endurance and resistance adaptations remains unclear, particularly when sessions are performed a few hours apart. We investigated the effects of concurrent training (in alternate orders, separated by ~3 hours) on endurance and resistance training adaptations, compared to resistance-only training. Materials and methods: Twenty-nine healthy, moderately-active men (mean ± SD; age 24.5 ± 4.7 y; body mass 74.9 ± 10.8 kg; height 179.7 ± 6.5 cm) performed either resistance-only training (RT, n = 9), or same-day concurrent training whereby high-intensity interval training was performed either 3 hours before (HIIT+RT, n = 10) or after resistance training (RT+HIIT, n = 10), for 3 d.wk-1 over 9 weeks. Training-induced changes in leg press 1-repetition maximal (1-RM) strength, countermovement jump (CMJ) performance, body composition, peak oxygen uptake (VO2 peak), aerobic power (W peak), and lactate threshold (W LT) were assessed before, and after both 5 and 9 weeks of training. Results: After 9 weeks, all training groups increased leg press 1-RM (~24–28%) and total lean mass (~3-4%), with no clear differences between groups. Both concurrent groups elicited similar small-to-moderate improvements in all markers of aerobic fitness (VO 2 peak ~8–9%; W LT ~16-20%; W peak ~14-15%). RT improved CMJ displacement (mean ± SD, 5.3 ± 6.3%), velocity (2.2 ± 2.7%), force (absolute: 10.1 ± 10.1%), and power (absolute: 9.8 ± 7.6%; relative: 6.0 ± 6.6%). HIIT+RT elicited comparable improvements in CMJ velocity only (2.2 ± 2.7%). Compared to RT, RT+HIIT attenuated CMJ displacement (mean difference ± 90%CI, -5.1 ± 4.3%), force (absolute: -8.2 ± 7.1%) and power (absolute: -6.0 ± 4.7%). Only RT+HIIT reduced absolute fat mass (mean ± SD, -11.0 ± 11.7%). Conclusions: In moderately-active males, concurrent training, regardless of the exercise order, presents a viable strategy to improve lower-body maximal strength and total lean mass comparably to resistance-only training, whilst also improving indices of aerobic fitness. However, improvements in CMJ displacement, force, and power were attenuated when RT was performed before HIIT, and as such, exercise order may be an important consideration when designing training programs in which the goal is to improve lower-body power. © 2020 Lee et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.