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Combined Squat and Light-Load Resisted Sprint Training for Improving Athletic Performance

Pareja-Blanco, Fernando; Asián-Clemente, José Antonio; Sáez de Villarreal, Eduardo

Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: April 23, 2019 - Volume Publish Ahead of Print - Issue - p
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000003171
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Pareja-Blanco, F, Asián-Clemente, JA, and Sáez de Villarreal, E. Combined squat and light-load resisted sprint training for improving athletic performance. J Strength Cond Res XX(X): 000–000, 2019—This study aimed to analyze the effects of 5 training methods: squat (SQ), light-load sled towing (LST), heavy-load sled towing (HST), squat combined with LST (SQ + LST), and squat combined with HST (SQ + HST) on physical performance. Ninety-one physically active men were randomly assigned to one of the aforementioned training methods or a control group. Before and after the training period, a battery of tests was completed: 30-m sprint; change of direction (COD); countermovement jump (CMJ) and Abalakov jump (ABK); and estimated 1 repetition maximum (1RM) in squat. Training took place once per week for 8 weeks. SQ trained the squat exercise, HST trained resisted sprints with 80% body mass (BM) load, LST trained resisted sprints with 12.5% BM load, SQ + HST combined squat with 80% BM load resisted sprint, and SQ + LST combined squat with 12.5% BM load resisted sprint. The loads used in squat ranged from 40 to 55% 1RM. After the training program, SQ + LST showed improvements in 0- to 30-, 10- to 20-, and 10- to 30-m sprint times, whereas SQ + HST did not achieve significant enhancements over any sprint time. LST and HST improved over 0–20 and 10–30 m, respectively. SQ showed improvements in 20- to 30-m sprint time. Change of direction and CMJ performance were increased for HST, SQ + HST, and SQ + LST, whereas only SQ + LST improved ABK height. SQ, HST, SQ + HST, and SQ + LST increased 1RM. Squat training with low/moderate loads combined with LST (12.5% BM) may be an effective stimulus for improving leg strength, jump ability, COD, and sprint performance.

Physical Performance & Athletic Research Center, Pablo de Olavide University, Seville, Spain

Address correspondence to Dr. Fernando Pareja-Blanco, fparbla@gmail.com.

Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.