Declining muscle power during advancing age predicts falls and loss of independence. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) may improve muscle power, but remains largely unstudied in ageing participants.Methods:
This randomized controlled trial (RCT) investigated the efficacy of a low-frequency HIIT (LfHIIT) intervention on peak muscle power (peak power output [PPO]), body composition, and balance in lifelong sedentary but otherwise healthy males.Methods:
Thirty-three lifelong sedentary ageing men were randomly assigned to either intervention (INT; n = 22, age 62.3 ± 4.1 years) or control (n = 11, age 61.6 ± 5.0 years) who were both assessed at 3 distinct measurement points (phase A), after 6 weeks of conditioning exercise (phase B), and after 6 weeks of HIIT once every 5 days in INT (phase C), where control remained inactive throughout the study.Results:
Static balance remained unaffected, and both absolute and relative PPO were not different between groups at phases A or B, but increased significantly in INT after LfHIIT (P < 0.01). Lean body mass displayed a significant interaction (P < 0.01) due to an increase in INT between phases B and C (P < 0.05).Conclusions:
6 weeks of LfHIIT exercise feasible and effective method to induce clinically relevant improvements in absolute and relative PPO, but does not improve static balance in sedentary ageing men.