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Comparing Short-Term Complex and Compound Training Programs on Vertical Jump Height and Power Output

Mihalik, Jason P1,2; Libby, Jeremiah J1; Battaglini, Claudio L1; McMurray, Robert G1,2

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: January 2008 - Volume 22 - Issue 1 - pp 47-53
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31815eee9e
Original Research

The purpose of this study was to determine whether there were differences in vertical jump height and lower body power production gains between complex and compound training programs. A secondary purpose was to determine whether differences in gains were observed at a faster rate between complex and compound training programs. Thirty-one college-aged club volleyball players (11 men and 20 women) were assigned into either a complex training group or a compound training group based on gender and pre-training performance measures. Both groups trained twice per week for 4 weeks. Work was equated between the 2 groups. Complex training alternated between resistance and plyometric exercises on each training day; whereas, compound training consisted of resistance training on one day and plyometric training on the other. Our analyses showed significant improvements in vertical jump height in both training groups after only 3 weeks of training (P < 0.0001); vertical jump height increased by approximately 5% and 9% in the complex and compound training groups, respectively. However, neither group improved significantly better than the other, nor did either group experience faster gains in vertical leap or power output. The results of this study suggest that performing a minimum of 3 weeks of either complex or compound training is effective for improving vertical jump height and power output; thus, coaches should choose the program which best suits their training schedules.

1Department of Exercise and Sport Science; 2Curriculum in Human Movement Science, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Address correspondence to Robert G. McMurray.

© 2008 National Strength and Conditioning Association