Low-intensity sprint training with blood flow restriction improves 100 m dash

M Behringer, D Behlau, J Montag, M McCourt, J Mester

Publication: Contribution to journalJournal articlesResearchpeer-review


PURPOSE: We investigated the effects of practical blood flow restriction (pBFR) of leg muscles during sprint training on the 100 m dash time in well-trained sport students.

METHODS: Participants performed 6x100 m sprints at 60-70% of their maximal 100 m sprinting speed twice a week for 6 weeks, either with (IG; n=12) or without pBFR (CG; n=12).

RESULTS: The 100 m dash time significantly decreased more in the IG (-0.38±0.24 s) than in the CG (-0.16±0.17 s). The muscle thickness of the rectus femoris increased only in the IG, while no group by time interactions were found for the muscle thickness of the biceps femoris and the biceps brachii. The maximal isometric force, measured using a leg press, did not change in either group. However, the rate of force development improved in the IG. Growth hormone, testosterone, insulin-like growth factor 1, and cortisol concentrations did not significantly differ between both groups at any measurement time point (pre, 1 min, 20 min, 120 min, and 24 h after the six all-out sprints of the first training session). The muscle damage marker h-FABP increased significantly more in the CG than in the IG.

CONCLUSION: The pBFR improved the 100 m dash time significantly more than low-intensity sprint interval training alone. Other noted benefits of training with pBFR were a decreased level of muscle damage, a greater increase of the rectus femoris muscle thickness, and a higher rate of force development. However, the tested hormones were unable to explain the additional beneficial effects.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Strength and Conditioning Research. The Official Research Journal of the NSCA
Issue number9
Pages (from-to)2462-2472
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 25.11.2016

Research areas and keywords

  • Journal Article


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