BFR Training an alternative to heavy lifting for older adults?December 31, 2022
Excusing us for not representing the population with the model in scope above.😉
📑📚Though, we are not short in papers elucidating the potential effect of BFR Training. A recent review and meta-analysis have assessed whether Low-load BFR resistance training (BFR) is comparable to conventional high-load and Low-load resistance training (HL) and (LL), respectively, for muscle strength and hypertrophy in healthy older adults.
As a sub-analysis, the review also explored the influence of cuff pressure on these outcomes.
A comprehensive search, including all relevant research databases, resulted in the inclusion of 14 studies.
The review found moderate-quality evidence suggesting that BFR produces less muscle strength gains VS HL.
Low-quality evidence showing similar improvements in muscle hypertrophy as BFR VS HL.
BFR was found to produce greater increases in muscle strength VS LL (moderate quality).
And greater increases in hypertrophy for BFR VS LL, as low-quality evidence.
Concerning the influence of BFR cuff pressure on muscle strength and hypertrophy in older adults, finding no difference when applying pressure near or even greater than Limb Occlusion Pressure (LOP) VS HL
However, higher cuff pressures during BFR resulted in greater improvements in muscle strength VS conventional LL.
💡Discussion and Conclusion:
These findings suggest that BFR can be an effective method for increasing muscle strength and hypertrophy in healthy older adults, with the potential for greater benefits when higher cuff pressures are applied.
Like reviews on younger populations, this review indicates that BFR training results in lower muscle strength gains but similar improvements in muscle hypertrophy VS HL resistance training in healthy older adults.
Also, to be expected, BFR was found to produce greater gains in terms of muscle strength and hypertrophy compared to LL in this older population.
Cuff pressures near LOP during BFR training may enhance muscle strength gains.
As a conclusion of these findings, the authors state: “.. evidence of an increased interest in the efficacy of LL-BFR resistance training on the muscle strength and hypertrophy in healthy older adults ..”
As a platitude, the researchers want “More research is needed to investigate the clinical and physiological effects of high or low pressures ..” and do not mention the well-established pressure-load continuum in this regard. Though, the present findings are contradictory to the results from another recent paper by Zhang et al.
Primary source & free access:
Fabero-Garrido et al. (2022) Effects of Low-Load Blood Flow Restriction Resistance Training on Muscle Strength and Hypertrophy Compared with Traditional Resistance Training in Healthy Adults Older Than 60 Years Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.
Secondary source – also free access:
Zhang et al. (2022) Effect of blood flow restriction combined with low-intensity training on the lower limbs muscle strength and function in older adults: A meta-analysis.
Perera et al. (2022) Effects of Blood Flow Restriction Therapy for Muscular Strength, Hypertrophy, and Endurance in Healthy and Special Populations A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.
Grønfeldt et al. (2020) effect of blood-flow restricted vs. heavy-load strength training on muscle strength: systematic review and meta-analysis.
Formiga et al. (2020) effect of aerobic exercise training with and without blood flow restriction on aerobic capacity in healthy young adults- a systematic review with meta-analysis
Centner et al. (2019) Effects of Blood Flow Restriction Training on Muscular Strength and Hypertrophy in Older Individuals: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Lixandrao et al. (2018) Magnitude of Muscle Strength and Mass Adaptations Between High-Load Resistance Training Versus Low-Load Resistance Training Associated: Review and Meta-Analysis
Slysz et al. (2016) – The efficacy of blood flow restricted exercise A systematic review & meta-analysis