Training Load Indices, Perceived Tolerance, and Enjoyment Among Different Models of Resistance Training in Older Adults

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Conlon, JA, Haff, GG, Tufano, JJ, and Newton, RU. Training load indices, perceived tolerance, and enjoyment among different models of resistance training in older adults. J Strength Cond Res 32(3): 867–875, 2018—The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between volume load (VL), training monotony, and strain, and perceived tolerance and enjoyment, across periodized and nonperiodized (NP) resistance training (RT) in older adults. Forty-one healthy, untrained apparently healthy older adults (women = 21, men = 20; 70.9 ± 5.1 years; 166.3 ± 8.2 cm; 72.9 ± 13.4 kg) were randomly stratified into a NP, block periodized (BP), or daily undulating periodized (DUP) group and completed a 22-week RT intervention at a frequency of 3 d·wk−1. All training was executed on RT machines and training volume was equalized between training groups based on total repetitions. Despite statistical differences in VL, training monotony, and strain between NP, BP, and DUP RT, perceived tolerance and enjoyment were similar across training models. Therefore, no meaningful relationships between training load indices (VL, monotony, and strain) and perceived tolerance and enjoyment were evident. Based on these results, periodization strategies do not appear to impact perceived tolerance or enjoyment of RT among the elderly, yet are recommended for better management of training load, potentially reducing the risk of illness and injury and promoting long-term adherence. Above all, practitioners should promote a friendly, supportive, and motivating training environment to increase program adherence and consequent training adaptations.

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