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DOI: 10.1080/10255842.2015.1070593 · Source: PubMed

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Contribution of muscle hypertrophy to strength gain after training in elderly adults

S. Stragier, S. Baudry, J. R. Poortmans, J. Duchateau & A. Carpentier

To cite this article: S. Stragier, S. Baudry, J. R. Poortmans, J. Duchateau & A. Carpentier (2015) Contribution of muscle hypertrophy to strength gain after training in elderly adults, Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, 18:sup1, 2062-2063, DOI:

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Computer methods in BiomeChaniCs and BiomediCal engineering, 2015 Vol. 18, no. s1, 2062–2063, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10255842.2015.1070593

and BiomediCal engineering, 2015 Vol. 18, no. s1, 2062–2063, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10255842.2015.1070593
and BiomediCal engineering, 2015 Vol. 18, no. s1, 2062–2063, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10255842.2015.1070593

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Contribution of muscle hypertrophy to strength gain after training in elderly adults

S. Stragier a,b , S. Baudry b , J. R. Poortmans a , J. Duchateau b and A. Carpentier a

a laboratory for Biometry and exercise nutrition, université libre de Bruxelles, Bruxelles; b laboratory of applied Biology, université libre de Bruxelles, Bruxelles, Belgium

KEYWORDS

lean body mass; ageing; ultrasonography; dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry; pennation angle

1. Introduction

Ageing is associated with a progressive decrease in max- imal strength (Clark & Manini 2012), with the loss of muscle mass being proposed as the main contributor of such a decrease. However, muscular hypertrophy was not always associated with strength gain observed after strength training in elderly adults (Frontera et al. 1988; Häkkinen et al. 1998), with one study reporting no change in lean body mass after resistance training in elderly adults (Bermon et al. 1998). These results question about the rela- tion between muscle mass and strength in elderly adults. This study investigated the contribution of muscle adaptations in maximal strength gain to strength train- ing in elderly adults. To further determine the effect of muscle mass on strength gain, two groups of subjects were designed to receive either a placebo or a protein supplementation. Indeed, previous study on young men underscores the relevance of combining essential amino acids supplementation during strength training in order to increase muscle mass (Vieillevoye et al. 2010). Our pres- ent investigation involved the time course of changes of different variables to further document the relationship between strength and muscle mass gains.

2. Methods

Thirty five elderly adults (>60 years) completed the study. Two groups performed a strength training programme (2 sessions/week) for 24 weeks. One group (n = 13) received a placebo (27 g carbohydrate), and the other group (n = 12) received a protein supplementation enriched in leucine (20 g protein of which 2.5 g of leucine – 7 g of carbohy- drate). In addition, 10 subjects composed a control group (no training and placebo). The training session was com- posed of two strength exercises involving the lower limb muscles (leg press machine, calf raises on the leg press

machine). The volume of training began with 30 repetitions in 3 sets of 10 repetitions at 70% of 1 repetition maximal. Then, the workload was gradually increased to reach 50 repetitions distributed over 6 sets. The thickness (distance between superficial and deep aponeuroses) and pennation angle (angle formed between deep aponeurosis and mus- cle fascicle) of the gastrocnemius medialis were recorded by ultrasonography (DP-6900Vet, Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics) to document changes in muscle hypertrophy and architecture, respectively. Lean body mass was assessed by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA; model Discovery, Hologic). The torque of the ankle plantar flexor muscles was measured during maximal voluntary contractions (MVC). Excepted for DXA that was only measured before and after the training periods, all variables were assessed before, at midterm (12 weeks) and after the end of training period. The data were analysed by 2-way ANOVAs (supplement x training) with Tukey post hoc test when significant main effect or interaction was found.

3. Results and discussion

There were no statistical differences in the control group for the variables measured 6 months apart. As the placebo and supplemented groups exhibited similar changes in response to training (p > 0.05) for all variables, data from both groups were pooled together. MVC torque produced by the plantar flexors increased [+26.9%; p < 0.001] in the first 12 weeks, whereas it did not change in the second half of the training period (+2.9%; p > 0.05). Muscle thickness increased nearly significantly (+3.6%; p = 0.06) and sig- nificantly (+5.1%; p < 0.05) in the first and second half of the training period, respectively (Figure 1). The pennation angle increased during the first (+7.1%;

p

< 0.05) and the second half of the training period (+6.4%;

p

< 0.05) (Figure 2).

CONTACT

s. stragier

© 2015 taylor & Francis

(+6.4%; p < 0.05) (Figure 2 ). CONTACT s. stragier © 2015 taylor & Francis severine.stragier@ulb.ac.be

severine.stragier@ulb.ac.be

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ComPuteR methoDS in BiomeChAniCS AnD BiomeDiCAl engineeRing

ComPuteR methoDS in BiomeChAniCS AnD BiomeDiCAl engineeRing 2063 Figure 1. muscle thickness before (pre), after 3

2063

methoDS in BiomeChAniCS AnD BiomeDiCAl engineeRing 2063 Figure 1. muscle thickness before (pre), after 3 months

Figure 1. muscle thickness before (pre), after 3 months (mid) and after 6 months (post) of training (supplementation and placebo pooled together). *denotes significant difference with mid

(

p < 0.05).

*denotes significant difference with mid ( p < 0.05). Figure 2. pennation angle before (pre) after

Figure 2. pennation angle before (pre) after 3 months (mid) and 6 months (post) of training (supplementation and placebo pooled together). *denotes significant difference with mid ( p < 0.05).

A weak negative linear association (r 2 = 0.27, p < 0.05) was found between initial values and the gain in muscle thickness after training. The lean body mass of the lower limbs, measured by DXA, increased by 2.1% (p < 0.05) after 6 months of resistance training. No relationship was found between the strength gains and the different param- eters related to muscle mass. Elderly adults who participated to the strength training programme exhibited an increase in muscle mass, assessed by ultrasonography and DXA. The extent of the increase was similar to those observed previously in elderly adults (Verdijk et al. 2009), and the gain in muscle thickness was greater for the subjects with a lesser initial value. These results indicate that a strength training programme in elderly adults induces muscle hypertrophy. In contrast to young adults (Vieillevoye et al. 2010), protein sup- plementation did not augment the gain in muscle mass. This suggests a decrease in sensitivity or responsiveness

of intramuscular signalling pathways regulating protein synthesis compared with younger adults (Breen & Phillips 2011). In the present study, muscle hypertrophy was less pronounced than the increase in muscle strength. Muscle strength mainly increased during the first part of the training programme, whereas muscle hypertro- phy showed a more progressive change throughout the whole training period. Furthermore, no correlation was observed between increases in strength and muscle mass. These results clearly underscore that, in response to training sessions, strength gain in elderly adults could be mainly attributed to other factors than changes in muscle mass likely involving neural adaptations (Clark & Manini

2012).

4. Conclusions

Although strength training increases maximal strength capacity of elderly adults, the contribution of muscle hypertrophy in this increase remains unclear, which sug- gest that neural adaptations might be a more potent factor for strength gain in elderly adults. Longer training period (more than 6 months) could be helpful to further inves- tigate the contribution of hypertrophy on strength gain in elderly adults.

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by the Walloon Region of Belgium (Geramino project C6077). S. Baudry is supported by the FNR/ FNRS, Belgium.

References

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Frontera W, Meredith C, O’Reilly K, Knuttgen H, Evans W. 1988. Strength conditioning in older men: skeletal muscle hypertrophy and improved function. J Appl Physiol.

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Häkkinen K, Kallinen M, Izquierdo M, Jokelainen K, Lassila H, Mälkiä Kraemer W, Newton R, Alen M. 1998. Changes in agonist-antagonist EMG, muscle CSA, and force during strength training in middle-aged and older people. J Appl Physiol. 84:1341–1349. Verdijk L, Gleeson B, Jonkers R, Meijer K, Savelberg H, Dendale P, van Loon L. 2009. Skeletal muscle hypertrophy following resistance training is accompanied by a fiber type-specific increase in satellite cell content in elderly men. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 64A:332–339. Vieillevoye S, Poortmans J, Duchateau J, Carpentier A. 2010. Effects of a combined essential amino acids/carbohydrate supplementation on muscle mass, architecture and maximal strength following heavy-load training. Eur J Appl Physiol.

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