Adaptation of perceptual responses to low-load blood flow restriction training

Juan Martín-Hernández, Jorge Ruiz-Aguado, Azael Juan Herrero, Jeremy Paul Loenneke, Per Aagaard, Carlos Cristi-Montero, Héctor Menéndez, Pedro Jesús Marín

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The purpose of this study was to determine the adaptive response of ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) and pain over six consecutive training sessions. Thirty subjects were assigned to either a blood flow restricted training group (BFRT) or a high intensity group (HIT). BFRT group performed four sets (30+15+15+15, respectively) of unilateral leg extension at an intensity of 20% one repetition maximum (1RM) while a restrictive cuff was applied to the most proximal part of the leg. HIT group performed 3 sets of eight repetitions with 85%1RM. RPE and pain were assessed following every exercise set. Per-session RPE and pain were considered as the average value throughout all sets. RPE dropped from Session 4 following HIT (8.5 to 7.6, p<0.05) and from Session 5 following BFRT (7.4 to 6.0, p<0.01). Perceived pain dropped from Session 5 in both groups (HIT: 6.2 to 5.4 and BFRT: 8.1 to 6.3, p<0.01). No between-group differences were found at any time point. In summary, BFRT induces a high perceptual response to training. However, this perceptual response is rapidly attenuated, leading to values similar to those experienced during HIT. Low load BFRT should not be limited to highly motivated individuals only.

TidsskriftJournal of Strength and Conditioning Research
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)765-772
StatusUdgivet - mar. 2017



Martín-Hernández, J., Ruiz-Aguado, J., Herrero, A. J., Loenneke, J. P., Aagaard, P., Cristi-Montero, C., Menéndez, H., & Marín, P. J. (2017). Adaptation of perceptual responses to low-load blood flow restriction training. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 31(3), 765-772.