n International SportMed Journal - Acute hypotensive effects after a strength training session : a review : review article

Volume 15, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1528-3356



Magnitude and duration of the hypotensive response after a strength training (ST) session may in part depend on the manipulation of ST variables. This review examines the effect of the ST variables on the hypotensive response after a ST session.

Thirty-two studies were included in this review. Studies concerning the post-exercise hypotensive response of ST session were searched on MEDLINE, Science Citation Index, National Library of Medicine, Scopus, Sports Discus, Scielo, and CINAHL utilising the following keywords and respective abbreviations: circulation, hypotensive effect, hypotensive response, hypotension, hypertension, high blood pressure, combined with resistance training, resistive exercises, resistance exercises, resistive exercise, strength training, weight training and weight lifting. Names of authors cited in some studies were also utilised in the search. Hand searches of relevant journals and reference lists obtained from articles were also conducted at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro libraries, Brazil. The last search was performed in July 2012.
The majority of acute studies support that ST produces a post-exercise hypotensive response after a single session. Larger hypotensive responses to ST are observed using higher loads (6RM, 80% 1RM) with trained subjects, moderate loads (40% 1RM) with untrained subjects, higher volumes (number of exercises), multiple sets (3 sets or more), large muscle groups (total body), circuit training programs, longer rest intervals with a traditional training format and shorter rest intervals with a circuit training format, and alternated exercise orders (upper body x lower body). The effect of age on the hypotensive response indicates that older compared to younger subjects show a greater hypotensive response after ST. In addition, some studies indicate that young trained subjects have a greater and longer hypotensive response after ST compared to young untrained subjects, while this latter population may show a momentary blood pressure elevation after ST, especially with higher training intensities (80% 1RM).

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