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Journal of Aging Research
Volume 2012, Article ID 426278, 8 pages
Clinical Study

Effects of High-Speed Power Training on Muscle Performance and Braking Speed in Older Adults

Department of Physical Therapy, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA

Received 11 September 2011; Revised 1 December 2011; Accepted 6 December 2011

Academic Editor: Dominique Meynial-Denis

Copyright © 2012 Stephen P. Sayers and Kyle Gibson. 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.


We examined whether high-speed power training (HSPT) improved muscle performance and braking speed using a driving simulator. 72 older adults (22 m, 50 f; age = 70.6 ± 7.3 yrs) were randomized to HSPT at 40% one-repetition maximum (1RM) (HSPT: n=25; 3 sets of 12–14 repetitions), slow-speed strength training at 80%1RM (SSST: n=25; 3 sets of 8–10 repetitions), or control (CON: n=22; stretching) 3 times/week for 12 weeks. Leg press and knee extension peak power, peak power velocity, peak power force/torque, and braking speed were obtained at baseline and 12 weeks. HSPT increased peak power and peak power velocity across a range of external resistances (40–90% 1RM; P<0.05) and improved braking speed (P<0.05). Work was similar between groups, but perceived exertion was lower in HSPT (P<0.05). Thus, the less strenuous HSPT exerted a broader training effect and improved braking speed compared to SSST.