The purpose of this study was to determine whether twitch contractile properties and strength of the triceps surae could be altered by 8 weeks of low-repetition or high-repetition isotonic exercise. Subjects were randomly assigned to either the low- or high-repetition group. Before- and after-training measurements were recorded for strength and contractile properties. The contractile variables of the muscle twitch were latency, time to peak force, peak force, half-contraction time, and half-relaxation time. Strength measurements were determined utilizing a one repetition maximal (1-RM) heel-raise testing device. A two-way ANOVA with repeated measures was used to test the effect of training on each variable. Both groups showed a significant increase in 1-RM and half-relaxation time and a decrease in electrical stimulation current after the 8-week training period. It was concluded that if high-repetition exercises develop slow-twitch Type I muscle fibers and low-repetition exercises develop fast-twitch Type II fibers, training programs must be designed specifically according to the desired outcome.
Crayton L. Moss is with the School of Health, Physical Education and Recreation at Bowling Green State University, 35 College Park, Bowling Green, OH 43403. Scott Grimmer is a graduate student with the School of Health, Physical Education and Recreation at Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH 43403.