Maximal strength, power, and aerobic endurance adaptations to concurrent strength and sprint interval training

Abstract

Purpose

This study was designed to examine whether concurrent sprint interval and strength training (CT) would result in compromised strength development when compared to strength training (ST) alone. In addition, maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max) and time to exhaustion (TTE) were measured to determine if sprint interval training (SIT) would augment aerobic performance.

Methods

Fourteen recreationally active men completed the study. ST (n = 7) was performed 2 days/week and CT (n = 7) was performed 4 days/week for 12 weeks. CT was separated by 24 h to reduce the influence of acute fatigue. Body composition was analyzed pre- and post-intervention. Anaerobic power, one-repetition maximum (1RM) lower- and upper-body strength, VO2max and TTE were analyzed pre-, mid-, and post-training. Training intensity for ST was set at 85 % 1RM and SIT trained using a modified Wingate protocol, adjusted to 20 s.

Results

Upper- and lower-body strength improved significantly after training (p < 0.001) with no difference between the groups (p > 0.05). VO2max increased 40.9 ± 8.4 to 42.3 ± 7.1 ml/kg/min (p < 0.05) for CT, whereas ST remained unchanged. A significant difference in VO2max (p < 0.05) was observed between groups post-intervention (CT: 42.3 ± 7.1 vs. ST: 36.0 ± 3.0 ml/kg/min). A main effect for time and group was observed in TTE (p < 0.05). A significant main effect for time was observed in average power (p < 0.05).

Conclusion

Preliminary findings suggest that performing concurrent sprint interval and strength training does not attenuate the strength response when compared to ST alone, while also improves aerobic performance measures, such as VO2max at the same time.

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Fig. 1

Abbreviations

1RM:

One-repetition maximum

ANOVA:

Analysis of variance

BP:

Bench press

BPM:

Beats per minute

BS:

Back squat

CT:

Concurrent training

DEXA:

Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry

ES:

Effect size

GXT:

Graded exercise test

ml/kg/min:

Milliliters per kilogram per minute

RPM:

Revolutions per minute

SIT:

Sprint interval training

ST:

Strength training

TTE:

Time to exhaustion

VO2max:

Maximal oxygen consumption

W:

Watts

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Acknowledgments

This study was funded by a Graduate Student Research grant to Gregory Cantrell from the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Gregory S. Cantrell.

Additional information

Communicated by Michael Lindinger.

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Cantrell, G.S., Schilling, B.K., Paquette, M.R. et al. Maximal strength, power, and aerobic endurance adaptations to concurrent strength and sprint interval training. Eur J Appl Physiol 114, 763–771 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00421-013-2811-8

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Keywords

  • Wingate training
  • High-intensity endurance training
  • Back squat
  • Bench press
  • Interference effect