Our purpose was to describe heart rate (HR), mean arterial blood pressure (MAP), and perceived exertion (RPE) responses to submaximal isokinetic concentric (CON) and eccentric (ECC) exercise at the same absolute torque output in older adults. Peak torques for ECC and CON knee extension were determined in healthy older males (n = 13) and females (n = 7). Subjects then performed separate, randomly ordered, 2-min bouts of CON and ECC exercise. Heart rate and MAP increased (p < .001) from resting values throughout both exercise bouts. CON exercise elicited a significantly greater cardiovascular response than ECC exercise after 60 s. Peak HR, MAP, and RPE after CON exercise were greater than after ECC exercise (p < .01). At the same absolute torque output, isokinetic CON knee extension exercise resulted in a significantly greater level of cardiovascular stress than ECC exercise. These results are relevant to resistance testing and exercise in older people.
Elizabeth Thompson is with the Henry Ford Medical Center, 19401 Hubbard Dr., Dearborn, MI 48126. Theo H. Versteegh is with the Woodstock General Hospital, 270 Riddell St., Woodstock, ON, Canada. N6S 6N6. Tom J. Overend, Trevor B. Birmingham, and Anthony A. Vandervoort are with the School of Physical Therapy at the University of Western Ontario, Elborn College, London, Ontario, N6G 1H1, Canada.