In the Journals

Resistance exercise vs. aerobic exercise increased blood flow to limbs

Young, healthy normotensive men who had an acute bout of resistance exercise were shown to have increased blood flow to limbs despite increasing central arterial stiffness, whereas those after aerobic exercise had increased central arterial dispensability but no increase in blood flow, according to study results.

The study included 10 healthy, moderately active men aged 21 to 29 years, who were normotensive, nonobese and free from any known CV or metabolic disease. Researchers assessed forearm blood flow during reactive hyperemia before and 60 minutes after exercise, whereas aortic and femoral pulse wave velocity was measured as an index of arterial stiffness before, 40 and 60 minutes after an acute bout of aerobic and resistance exercise.

Central pulse wave velocity decreased 8% after aerobic exercise and remained at this level through 60 minutes, whereas resistance exercise increased central pulse wave velocity 9.8% from before exercise to 60 minutes after exercise. Area under the curve for forearm blood flow-reactive hyperemia significantly increased 38% after resistance exercise, but no significant change was reported after aerobic exercise. Additionally, forearm vasodilatory capacity increased after resistance exercise but not after aerobic exercise.

These findings, the researchers wrote, suggest “that [resistance exercise] may produce compensatory peripheral vascular effects, offsetting the increase in central arterial stiffness, while keeping BP fairly constant after an acute exercise bout. Future studies that measure endothelial function specifically may provide further evidence to suggest whether mechanisms responsible for enhanced blood flow are either a transient compensatory response to arterial stiffness or an increase in signaling of endothelium-dependent dilators after acute [resistance exercise].”

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Young, healthy normotensive men who had an acute bout of resistance exercise were shown to have increased blood flow to limbs despite increasing central arterial stiffness, whereas those after aerobic exercise had increased central arterial dispensability but no increase in blood flow, according to study results.

The study included 10 healthy, moderately active men aged 21 to 29 years, who were normotensive, nonobese and free from any known CV or metabolic disease. Researchers assessed forearm blood flow during reactive hyperemia before and 60 minutes after exercise, whereas aortic and femoral pulse wave velocity was measured as an index of arterial stiffness before, 40 and 60 minutes after an acute bout of aerobic and resistance exercise.

Central pulse wave velocity decreased 8% after aerobic exercise and remained at this level through 60 minutes, whereas resistance exercise increased central pulse wave velocity 9.8% from before exercise to 60 minutes after exercise. Area under the curve for forearm blood flow-reactive hyperemia significantly increased 38% after resistance exercise, but no significant change was reported after aerobic exercise. Additionally, forearm vasodilatory capacity increased after resistance exercise but not after aerobic exercise.

These findings, the researchers wrote, suggest “that [resistance exercise] may produce compensatory peripheral vascular effects, offsetting the increase in central arterial stiffness, while keeping BP fairly constant after an acute exercise bout. Future studies that measure endothelial function specifically may provide further evidence to suggest whether mechanisms responsible for enhanced blood flow are either a transient compensatory response to arterial stiffness or an increase in signaling of endothelium-dependent dilators after acute [resistance exercise].”

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