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Effect of 12 weeks of moderate–intensity resistance training on arterial stiffness: a randomised controlled trial in women aged 32–59 years
  1. M Yoshizawa1,
  2. S Maeda1,2,
  3. A Miyaki1,
  4. M Misono1,
  5. Y Saito1,
  6. K Tanabe1,
  7. S Kuno1,
  8. R Ajisaka1
  1. 1
    Division of Sports Medicine, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, Tsukuba, Japan
  2. 2
    Center for Tsukuba Advanced Research Alliance, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan
  1. Correspondence to Dr S Maeda, Division of Sports Medicine, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305–8577, Japan; smaeda{at}


Background: Resistance training has been increasingly incorporated into the overall exercise programme because of its effect on muscle strength, functional capacity and osteoporosis. High-intensity resistance training increases arterial stiffness. However, the effect of moderate-intensity resistance training on arterial stiffness is unknown.

Objective: To determine whether 12 weeks of moderate-intensity resistance training increases arterial stiffness in middle-aged women.

Methods: 35 middle-aged women (age range 32 to 59 years) volunteered to participate. The subjects were randomly assigned to one of three groups: resistance training (RT) group, aerobic exercise training (AET) group or control group. The RT and AET groups performed 12 weeks of moderate-intensity resistance training or aerobic exercise training (two days/week).

Results: In the RT group, one-repetition maximum strength significantly increased after the intervention. Interestingly, aortic (carotid–femoral) pulse wave velocity (PWV; an index of arterial stiffness), and peripheral (femoral–ankle) PWV did not change with moderate-intensity resistance training. In contrast, in the AET group, carotid–femoral PWV significantly decreased after the intervention. Resistance training and aerobic exercise training did not affect blood pressure.

Conclusions: This study found that moderate-intensity resistance training did not increase arterial stiffness in middle-aged women, which may have great importance for health promotion with resistance training.

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  • Funding This work was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan (18300215, 18650186, 21970), and in part by Health and Labour Sciences Research Grants from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Japan.

  • Competing interests none.