Publication Date


Degree Type

Master of Science in Physical Education


Super Slow training was proposed by Ken Hutchins in a book entitled Super Slow: The Ultimate Exercise Protocol (1992). Since then Super Slow training has been proposed to improve strength more effectively than traditional resistance training and improve cardiovascular measures above aerobic exercise. However, whether this type of training is safe for the older, possibly hypertensive population to which it is being targeted is questionable. To help provide an answer to this question the purpose of this study was to measure blood pressure, heart rate (HR), and ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) while performing the Super Slow resistance training protocol (SS) and compare those measures to the "Gold Standard" slow resistance training protocol (GS). The elbow flexion and knee extension exercise were incorporated for this investigation. The subjects completed three separate testing sessions. Session 1 consisted of obtaining a 1 repetition maximum on the above mentioned exercises and a familiarization trial for SS. The SS trial consisted of three sets of each exercise. Each set consisted of a 10 second concentric phase and a 5 second eccentric phase. HR was monitored using an Acumen HR monitor (Acumen Inc., Sterling, VA). Blood pressure measurements were obtained using an Omron wrist blood pressure monitor (Omron Healthcare Inc., Vernon Hills, IL). Measurements were taken after set 1, 2, and 3 and 2 minutes post set 3. Measurements were also taken prior to set 2 and 3. RPE's differentiated to the active musculature were obtained three times per set. GS was administered in the same manner as SS with the exception of speed of movement, resistance, and number of repetitions accomplished. Each set during GS consisted of a 2 second concentric phase and a 4 second eccentric phase. Values were analyzed using repeated measures ANOVA for between and within group comparisons for HR, blood pressure, and RPE. When ANOVA indicated a significant difference, a Bonferroni post hoc procedure was used to detect specific differences between the variables in different trials. Results were considered significant at p < .05. The results showed systolic blood pressure was lower than the resting measurement during the elbow flexion exercise and higher than the resting measurement during the knee extension exercise within trials. Diastolic blood pressure did not change significantly within trials through either protocol. HR was greater during GS as compared to SS for both exercises. RPE was also greater during GS as compared to SS for both exercises. In conclusion, even though systolic blood pressure was greater within SS and GS, a comparison of these protocols showed minimal differences in BP responses suggesting either would be appropriate for the individual to whom strength training is not contraindicated. This assumption is also considering these same results would be seen in the hypertensive populations. However, it should be individualized because different people have differing blood pressure responses. Also, consideration should be given to resistance because of the greater HR and RPE response elicited by GS.


Kinesiology | Physiology | Sports Sciences