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Effects of leg resistance training on arterial function in older men
  1. S Maeda1,2,
  2. T Otsuki1,
  3. M Iemitsu1,2,
  4. M Kamioka2,
  5. J Sugawara3,
  6. S Kuno2,
  7. R Ajisaka2,
  8. H Tanaka4
  1. 1Center for Tsukuba Advanced Research Alliance (TARA), University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan
  2. 2Institute of Health and Sport Sciences, University of Tsukuba
  3. 3Institute for Human Science and Biomedical Engineering, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tsukuba
  4. 4Department of Kinesiology and Health Education, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr Maeda
 Center for Tsukuba Advanced Research Alliance, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8577, Japan; smaeda{at}


Background: Little information is available on the effect of strength training on vascular function, particularly in older people.

Objective: To determine the effect of resistance training on arterial stiffness and endothelial function in older adults.

Method: Eleven healthy men (mean (SEM) age 64 (1) years) performed 12 weeks of resistance training involving knee flexion and extension (three sets a day, two days a week).

Results: Resistance training increased maximal muscle power by 16% (p<0.0001). Arterial stiffness as assessed by aortic pulse wave velocity did not change with resistance training. Plasma concentration of nitric oxide (NO), measured as its stable end product (nitrite/nitrate), had increased (p<0.05) after resistance training (61.2 (10.4) v 39.6 (3.2) μmol/l). There was no change in plasma concentration of endothelin-1.

Conclusion: The results suggest that short term resistance training may increase NO production without stiffening central arteries in healthy older men.

  • Nox, nitrite/nitrate
  • PWV, pulse wave velocity
  • strength training
  • arterial stiffness
  • endothelial function
  • nitric oxide

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  • Published Online First 18 August 2006

  • Competing interests: none declared