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A Comparison of the Effects of Three Strength Training Programs on Women.

Boyer, Brian T.
Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: August 1990
Article: PDF Only

The purpose of this study was to compare the strength and body composition changes produced by three different strength training programs: isotonic, involving free weights; compound variable resistance, involving Nautilus (P.O. Drawer 809014, Dallas Texas); and linear variable resistance, utilizing the Soloflex (570 NE 53rd, Hillsboro, Oregon) device. Thirty-two female subjects performed pre- and posttests for strength utilizing the one repetition maximum (1 RM) test on three exercises from each of the training programs. Subjects were pre- and posttested on four skinfold thicknesses, percent body fat and body girths. The subjects utilized one of three training programs three times a week for 12 weeks. All three modes of training were found to significantly increase strength levels (p < 0.05). Subjects who trained with free weights or Nautilus performed at significantly higher levels when tested for 1 RM on exercises included in their training program. Strength gains of the nautilus training group were significantly higher levels (p < 0.05) than those of soloflex training group on the free weight leg press 1 RM test. there were no other significant different strength gains as a result of the training programs. The training programs to produce significant decreases in the arm, thigh and suprailiac skinfolds, as well as decreases in percent body fat. No significant changes were found in the girth measurements or abdominal skin fold. No significant differences were found among the training groups for effect on body composition variables. It was concluded that the three training programs produced comparable changes in body composition and strength, with training specificity in strength gains.

(C) 1990 National Strength and Conditioning Association