The response of calf-muscle strength, resting blood flow, and postocclusive blood flow (PObf) were investigated after 4 wk of low-load resistance training (LLRT) with and without blood-flow restriction in a matched-leg design. Ten untrained older individuals age 62–73 yr performed unilateral plantar-flexion LLRT at 25% 1-repetition maximum (1RM). One limb was trained with normal blood flow and the other had blood flow restricted using a pressure cuff above the knee. 1RM, isometric maximal voluntary contraction, and isokinetic strength at 0.52 rad/s increased (p < .05) more after LLRT with blood-flow restriction than with normal blood flow. Peak PObf increased (p < .05) after LLRT with blood-flow restriction, compared with no change after LLRT with normal blood flow. These results suggest that 4 wk of LLRT with blood-flow restriction may be beneficial to older individuals to improve strength and blood-flow parameters.
The authors are with the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Leicestershire, UK.