ABSTRACT: The purpose of the study was to determine whether muscle contraction type (concentric [CON] or eccentric [ECC]) or loading (relative or absolute) has a greater impact on the perceptual and metabolic responses to conventional resistance exercise. Additionally, overall effort, pain sensations, and specific pain descriptors were compared with physiological responses. Seven healthy men (mean +/- SE, 25.71 +/- 2.17 years) with resistance training experience completed 2 one-repetition maximum (1-RM) trials. Subsequently, 2 randomized, counterbalanced, experimental sessions were completed consisting of 4 sets of 10 repetitions for 6 exercises. These sessions were performed at 65% CON 1-RM for CON only contractions or 65% CON 1-RM + 20% for ECC contractions. Blood samples were taken pre, post, and 15 minutes postexercise. OMNI-RPE (OMNI-Res), CR-10 pain rating, McGill pain ratings, and heart rate (HR) were recorded after each set. A significant time effect occurred for OMNI-Res, pain, lactate, and HR (p < 0.05). No significant pattern emerged for the contraction type, except for higher HR and lactate immediately postexercise for the CON contractions. Physiological measures were not significantly related to perceptual measures. When considered with previous data, muscle loading rather than contraction type plays the primary role in perceptual alterations of effort sense and pain. Practical applications of the investigation are that strength and conditioning professionals may be able to load CON and ECC contractions in a relative fashion by increasing loads in the ECC portion by 20% above the CON load that would result in comparable perceptual experiences.
The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 07/2008; 22(4):1184-93. · 1.83 Impact Factor