Four weeks of augmented eccentric loading using a novel leg press device improved leg strength in well-trained athletes and professional sprint track cyclists

Harden, Mellissa, Wolf, Alex, Evans, Martin, Hicks, Kirsty, Thomas, Kevin and Howatson, Glyn (2020) Four weeks of augmented eccentric loading using a novel leg press device improved leg strength in well-trained athletes and professional sprint track cyclists. PLoS ONE, 15 (7). e0236663. ISSN 1932-6203

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0236663

Abstract

This study assessed the efficacy of strength training using augmented eccentric loading to provoke increases in leg strength in well-trained athletes, and sprint track cyclists, using a novel leg press device. Twelve well-trained athletes were randomly allocated traditional resistance training (TRAD, n = 6), or resistance training using augmented eccentric loading (AEL, n = 6). A further 5 full-time, professional sprint track cyclists from a senior national squad programme also trained with augmented eccentric loading (AEL-ATH) alongside their usual sport-specific training. Participants completed four weeks of twice-weekly resistance training using the leg press exercise. In TRAD the lowering phase of the lift was set relative to concentric strength. In AEL and AEL-ATH the lowering phase was individualised to eccentric strength. Concentric, eccentric, isometric and coupled eccentric-concentric leg press strength, and back squat 1 repetition maximum (1RM), were assessed pre- and post-training. The AEL and AEL-ATH groups performed the eccentric phase with an average 26 ± 4% greater load across the programme. All groups experienced increases in concentric (5%, 7% and 3% for TRAD, AEL & AEL-ATH respectively), eccentric (7%, 11% and 6% for TRAD, AEL & AEL-ATH respectively), and squat 1RM (all p < 0.05), where the AEL-ATH group experienced relatively greater increases (13% vs. 5% in TRAD and AEL, p < 0.01). The TRAD and AEL groups also increased isometric strength (p < 0.05). A four-week period of augmented eccentric loading increased leg strength in well-trained athletes and track cyclists. The eccentric leg press stimulus was well-tolerated, supporting the inclusion of such training in the preparation programmes of athletes.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Resistance training, isometric, concentric, athletes, force
Subjects: B100 Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology
C600 Sports Science
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation
Depositing User: Rachel Branson
Date Deposited: 15 Jul 2020 08:54
Last Modified: 24 Aug 2020 15:16
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/43776

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