Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2015) 14, 269 - 275

Research article
Neuromuscular and Blood Lactate Responses to Squat Power Training with Different Rest Intervals Between Sets
André Martorelli1, , Martim Bottaro1, Amilton Vieira1, Valdinar Rocha-Júnior1, Eduardo Cadore2, Jonato Prestes3, Dale Wagner4, Saulo Martorelli1
Author Information
1 College of Physical Education, University of Brasília, Brasília, DF, Brazil
2 Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil
3 Catholic University of Brasilia, DF, Brazil
4 Utah State University, Logan, UT, USA

André Martorelli
✉ University of Brasília (UnB), Faculdade de Ed. Física (FEF), Campus Universitário Darcy Ribeiro, Brasília-DF, 70.919-970, Brazil
Publish Date
Received: 10-07-2014
Accepted: 23-01-2015
Published (online): 01-06-2015
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Studies investigating the effect of rest interval length (RI) between sets on neuromuscular performance and metabolic response during power training are scarce. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to compare maximal power output, muscular activity and blood lactate concentration following 1, 2 or 3 minutes RI between sets during a squat power training protocol. Twelve resistance-trained men (22.7 ± 3.2 years; 1.79 ± 0.08 cm; 81.8 ± 11.3 kg) performed 6 sets of 6 repetitions of squat exercise at 60% of their 1 repetition maximum. Peak and average power were obtained for each repetition and set using a linear position transducer. Muscular activity and blood lactate were measured pre and post-exercise session. There was no significant difference between RI on peak power and average power. However, peak power decreased 5.6%, 1.9%, and 5.9% after 6 sets using 1, 2 and 3 minutes of RI, respectively. Average power also decreased 10.5% (1 min), 2.6% (2 min), and 4.3% (3 min) after 6 sets. Blood lactate increased similarly during the three training sessions (1-min: 5.5 mMol, 2-min: 4.3 mMol, and 3-min: 4.0 mMol) and no significant changes were observed in the muscle activity after multiple sets, independent of RI length (pooled ES for 1-min: 0.47, 2-min: 0.65, and 3-min: 1.39). From a practical point of view, the results suggest that 1 to 2 minute of RI between sets during squat exercise may be sufficient to recover power output in a designed power training protocol. However, if training duration is malleable, we recommend 2 min of RI for optimal recovery and power output maintenance during the subsequent exercise sets.

Key words: Power development, muscle recovery, power training, strength training

           Key Points
  • This study demonstrates that 1 minute of RI between sets is sufficient to maintain maximal power output during multiple sets of a power-based exercise when it is composed of few repetitions and the sets are not performed until failure. Therefore, a short RI should be considered when designing training programs for the development of muscular power.
  • Short RI may be more practical for strength coaches under time constraints (i.e. 1 minute of RI required only 7 minutes to complete an exercise session, while with 2 minutes take 12 minutes, and 17 minutes with 3 minutes of RI).
  • Future research is needed to examine the longitudinal effects of interval rest in training programs designed for the development of muscular power.
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