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Effects of a Six-Week Hip Thrust vs. Front Squat Resistance Training Program on Performance in Adolescent Males

A Randomized Controlled Trial

Contreras, Bret; Vigotsky, Andrew D.; Schoenfeld, Brad J.; Beardsley, Chris; McMaster, Daniel T.; Reyneke, Jan H.T.; Cronin, John B.

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: April 2017 - Volume 31 - Issue 4 - p 999–1008
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000001510
Original Research

Contreras, B, Vigotsky, AD, Schoenfeld, BJ, Beardsley, C, McMaster, DT, Reyneke, JHT, and Cronin, JB. Effects of a six-week hip thrust vs. front squat resistance training program on performance in adolescent males: A randomized controlled trial. J Strength Cond Res 31(4): 999–1008, 2017—The barbell hip thrust may be an effective exercise for increasing horizontal force production and may thereby enhance performance in athletic movements requiring a horizontal force vector, such as horizontal jumping and sprint running. The ergogenic ability of the squat is well known. The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of 6-week front squat and hip thrust programs in adolescent male athletes. Vertical jump height, horizontal jump distance, 10- and 20-m sprint times, and isometric midthigh pull peak force were among the measured performance variables, in addition to front squat and hip thrust 3 repetition maximum (3RM) strength. Magnitude-based effect sizes revealed potentially beneficial effects for the front squat in both front squat 3RM strength and vertical jump height when compared with the hip thrust. No clear benefit for one intervention was observed for horizontal jump performance. Potentially beneficial effects were observed for the hip thrust compared with the front squat in 10- and 20-m sprint times. The hip thrust was likely superior for improving normalized isometric midthigh pull strength and very likely superior for improving hip thrust 3RM and isometric midthigh pull strength. These results support the force vector theory.

1Sport Performance Research Institute New Zealand, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand;

2Kinesiology Program, Arizona State University, Phoenix, Arizona;

3Leon Root, M.D. Motion Analysis Laboratory, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, New York;

4Department of Health Sciences, CUNY Lehman College, Bronx, New York;

5Strength and Conditioning Research Limited, London, United Kingdom;

6Strength and Conditioning, St. Kentigern College, Auckland, New Zealand; and

7School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Science, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia

Address correspondence to Andrew D. Vigotsky,

Copyright © 2017 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.