Resistance training has many positive health effects including but not limited to increased aerobic capacity, decrease in body fat, and increase in muscle strength. Each of these qualities were used to examine the effects of single versus multi-joint exercises in this research study. Thirty-six male participants were split into two groups to complete an 8-week resistance training program that contained either only single joint (SJ) exercises or only multi-joint (MJ) exercises. Body composition, one repetition maximum tests, and peak oxygen consumption (VO2max) were all measured at the beginning and end of the study. Statistical analysis showed that both groups improved in all categories, with those in the MJ group having significantly larger improvements in VO2max and muscle strength than those in the SJ group.
People question what type of exercises should be part of their training and learning more about the benefits of each will help to optimize training programs. This study kept total load volume the same between the groups which allows for comparison between the groups; however, in actual training programs this is often not the actual switch people would be making if changing exercise types. Other constraints of this study include that it only included male participants and they were all amateur soccer players. Therefore, further studies would be needed to conclude that the same results would hold true for other groups like professional weight lifters, non-athletes, and females.
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Work Cited: Paoli A, Gentil P, Moro T, Marcolin G, Bianco A. Resistance Training with Single vs. Multi-joint Exercises at Equal Total Load Volume: Effects on Body Composition, Cardiorespiratory Fitness, and Muscle Strength. Front Physiol. 2017;8:1105. doi:10.3389/fphys.2017.01105.