Minimal dose resistance training with elastic tubes promotes functional and cardiovascular benefits to older women

Objectives: To compare the effects of conventional resistance training (CRT) versus elastic resistance training (ERT) on functional fitness and cardiovascular outcomes in older women. Methods: Seventeen older women were divided into two groups: CRT group (n=9, 66.98 ± 6.0 years) performed exercises using weight machines and/or free-weight and ERT (n=8, 71.50 ± 4.98 years) group performed exercises using an elastic resistance device. Low-volume sessions (~ 15 to 18 min total time) were performed 2 times a week for 14 weeks following a non-periodized model. Before and after the training period, participants were assessed for functional tests (chair to stand, arm curl, 8-foot up-and-go, sit-and-reach, back stretch, 6-minute walk), blood pressure (BP) and resting heart hate (HR). Results: Both protocols promoted similar improvements on chair to stand (P<0.01), arm curl (P<0.01), 8-foot up-and-go (P<0.01), left sit-and-reach (P<0.05) and left back stretch (P<0.05) from pre- to post-test. Only CRT improved on 6-minute walk (P=0.033) and only ERT reduced resting HR (P=0.007) from pre- to post-training. No differences were observed between groups for any outcome. Conclusion: Aminimal dose approach of ERT may be an alternative strategy to CRT to promote functional improvements in older women.

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