Both aerobic (AT) and resistance training (RT) are recommended as non-pharmacological treatments to prevent hypertension. However, there is a paucity of literature investigating the effects of combined exercise modes (RT combined with AT) in elderly hypertensive women. Thus, our aim was to compare the post-exercise hypotension (PEH) response to both protocol models and to assess the correlation between the degree of PEH following acute and chronic training. Further, we also compared several biochemical variables for each training group. Sixty hypertensive older women were randomly assigned into non-exercised control (no systematic exercise training throughout the study), eccentric RT (ERT) and traditional RT (TRT). The training programs consisted of 16 weeks of RT combined with AT. Blood pressure (BP), biochemical profiles and one repetition maximum (1RM) were evaluated. There was a significant increase in HDL following both training regimens pre- to post-training (combined ERT +5% and TRT +7%; P = 0.001 for both). There was a decrease in systolic BP (combined ERT -19% and TRT -21%; P = 0.001 for both) and diastolic BP (-13% for both; P = 0.001 for both). There was an increase in bench press 1RM (combined ERT +54% and TRT +35%; P = 0.001 for both) and leg press 1RM (combined ERT +52% and TRT +33%; P = 0.001 for both). The magnitude of decrease in SBP after acute exercise was moderately correlated with the drop in SBP after chronic training for the ERT combined with AT group (r = 0.64). Both combined training protocols are effective in promoting benefits in health-related factors (HDL, SBP, DBP and 1RM). Considering the lower cardiovascular stress experienced during combined ERT, this type of training seems to be the most suitable for elders, deconditioned individuals and hypertensives.
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