Skeletal Muscle Hypertrophy with Concurrent Exercise Training: Contrary Evidence for an Interference Effect

Abstract

Over the last 30+ years, it has become axiomatic that performing aerobic exercise within the same training program as resistance exercise (termed concurrent exercise training) interferes with the hypertrophic adaptations associated with resistance exercise training. However, a close examination of the literature reveals that the interference effect of concurrent exercise training on muscle growth in humans is not as compelling as previously thought. Moreover, recent studies show that, under certain conditions, concurrent exercise may augment resistance exercise-induced hypertrophy in healthy human skeletal muscle. The purpose of this article is to outline the contrary evidence for an acute and chronic interference effect of concurrent exercise on skeletal muscle growth in humans and provide practical literature-based recommendations for maximizing hypertrophy when training concurrently.

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Acknowledgments

The authors wish to thank Cory J. Greever and Liam F. Fitzgerald for their critical evaluations of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Kevin A. Murach.

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The cost of publication for this work was defrayed by the Department of Kinesiology and College of Health and Social Sciences at San Francisco State University.

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Kevin Murach and James Bagley declare that they have no conflicts of interest relevant to the content of this review.

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Murach, K.A., Bagley, J.R. Skeletal Muscle Hypertrophy with Concurrent Exercise Training: Contrary Evidence for an Interference Effect. Sports Med 46, 1029–1039 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-016-0496-y

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Keywords

  • Exercise Training
  • Resistance Training
  • Resistance Exercise
  • Aerobic Exercise
  • Endurance Athlete