The Low-Velocity Training Lowdown

You've probably seen people at the gym casually chatting through their workout, taking 4 or 5 minutes to rest between sets. This low-velocity training has been touted as an effective alternative to traditional strength and endurance programs. To test that theory, researchers from Ohio University recruited 34 college-aged females and assigned them to a traditional circuit of heavier weight with fewer reps (strength protocol), lighter load with more reps (endurance protocol) or a low-velocity routine that split the difference between weight and reps with lots of between set rest.

After 6 weeks, the traditional strength training group increased their leg press capacity by 62%, while the low-velocity group realized only a 27% gain. The group engaged in traditional endurance training realized about the same strength gains as the low-velocity group, but achieved the greatest degree of improvement in muscular endurance.

The Bigger Picture: All 3 training methods improved muscular strength and endurance. They also helped participants lose some weight. However, it's important to note that none of the protocols enhanced cardiovascular endurance. You'll have do work some cardio training into your routine if you want to accomplish that.
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