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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013, Article ID 615901, 6 pages
Research Article

Strength and Body Composition Changes in Recreationally Strength-Trained Individuals: Comparison of One versus Three Sets Resistance-Training Programmes

1Institute for Clinical Exercise & Health Science, University of the West of Scotland, Hamilton ML3 0JB, UK
2Health and Exercise Science Research Unit, School of Applied Sciences, University of South Wales, Pontypridd CF37 1DL, UK
3Cardiff School of Sport, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff CF23 6XD, UK
4Human Performance Laboratory, Technological and Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Received 15 April 2013; Revised 30 July 2013; Accepted 8 August 2013

Academic Editor: Kazushige Goto

Copyright © 2013 J. S. Baker et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of increasing the volume of weight-training from one to three sets upon body composition and muscular strength. Methods. Sixteen male weight-trainers volunteered to act as subjects and were randomly assigned to one of two training groups. Supervised weight-training targeting the upper body was conducted three times per week for eight weeks using one set ( ) or three sets ( ) of six repetitions to fatigue. Subjects were measured before and after the training intervention for (1) strength performance ( and kg) and (2) adiposity (sum of seven skinfold thicknesses in mm). Results. Both training groups improved significantly (20.7%) in terms of muscular strength ( ) with no differences being observed between the one set (21.98% increase) and three set group (20.71% increase) after the training interventions ( ). Significant decreases were also observed for skinfold measures in the one set group ( ). Conclusions. One set of high intensity resistance training was as effective as three sets for increasing the strength of muscle groups in the upper body. The one set protocol also produced significantly greater decreases in adiposity.