The Effectiveness of Frequency-Based Resistance Training Protocols on Muscular Performance and Hypertrophy in Trained Males: A Critically Appraised Topic
Clinical Scenario: Manipulation of exercise variables in resistance training (RT) is an important component in the development of muscular strength, power, and hypertrophy. Currently, most research centers on untrained or recreationally trained subjects. This critically appraised topic focuses on studies that center on the well-trained subject with regard to frequency of training. Clinical Question: In well-trained male subjects, is there an association between RT frequency and the development of muscular strength and hypertrophy? Summary of Key Findings: Four studies met the inclusion criteria and were included for analysis. All studies showed that lower-frequency training could elicit muscular strength and hypertrophy increases. One study suggested that a higher frequency compared with a lower frequency may provide a slight benefit to hypertrophic development. One study reported a greater level of delayed onset muscle soreness with lower frequency training. The 4 studies demonstrate support for the clinical question. Clinical Bottom Line: Current evidence suggests that lower-frequency RT produces equal to greater improvements on muscular strength and hypertrophy in comparison to higher-frequency RT when volume is equated. The evidence is particularly convincing when lower-frequency RT is associated with a total-body training protocol in well-trained male subjects. Strength of Recommendation: There is moderate-to-strong evidence to suggest that lower-frequency RT, when volume is equated, will produce equal to greater improvements on muscular strength and hypertrophy in comparison to higher-frequency RT.
Kessinger, T. K., Melton, B., Miyashita, T., & Ryan, G. (2020). The effectiveness of frequency-based resistance training protocols on muscular performance and hypertrophy in trained males: A critically appraised topic. Journal of Sport Rehabilitation. Online ahead of print Apr 25. doi: 10.1123/jsr.2019-0491.
Journal of Sport Rehabilitation
Human Kinetics Journals