Background: Hypotension post-exercise (HPE) depends on both training intensity and volume. It is known that traditional high-intensity (HI) resistance exercise may induce HPE.
However, it is not clear whether resistance exercise with blood flow restriction (BFR) at low load (LI-BFR) may cause the same HPE of the HI, when both the methods are standardized by work (volume).
Therefore, the aim of this study was to compare the post-exercise blood pressure between HI and LI-BFR in young adults.
Methods: Twelve apparently healthy trained men (mean ± SD – age = 23.50 ± 3.70 years, body mass index = 24.73 ± 2.79 kg/m2, body fat percentage = 11.76 ± 4.24 %, and one repetition
maximum [1RM] load for the knee extension machine = 112.08 ± 20.72 kg and biceps curl = 41.41 ± 6.74 kg) participated in a crossover randomized counterbalanced design study. Subjects participated in
three sessions separated by 3-5 days. In the first session, anthropometric measurements were taken and the 1RM test and familiarization session were performed. In the second and third sessions, knee
extension and biceps curl were executed under the HI and LI-BFR conditions. Both methods were standardized by total work with three sets of eight repetitions at 70% of 1RM for HI and three sets of 16
reps at 35% of 1RM for LI-BFR. A cadence of one second for eccentric and concentric contractions was followed and one-minute rest interval between sets and five minutes between exercises were
provided. BFR was applied at the most proximal portion of the limbs using a 76 mm wide elastic knee wraps placed on the arms (biceps curl) and thighs (knee extension). Systolic blood pressure (SBP,
mmHg) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP, mmHg) were assessed at rest, immediately, 10 min, 20 min, 30 min, 40 min, 50 min, and 60 min post-exercise. To compare SBP and DBP measurements, a two-way
ANOVA with Bonferroni post hoc was used.
Results: There was no significant difference in SBP (P > 0.05) and DBP (p > 0.05) between HI and LI-BFR. When compared to rest (intragroup), there was a significant difference
immediately post-exercise for SBP in HI (P < 0.05) and DBP in LI-BFR (P < 0.05).
Conclusions: It was concluded that both HI and LI-BFR were not capable of inducing HPE. However, HI increased SBP immediately post-session, which may not be interesting for