Honors Theses


Lloyd L. Laubach and Anthony S. Leicht


Health and Sport Science

Publication Date

Spring 4-2014

Document Type

Honors Thesis


The cardiovascular system changes acutely to the stresses of exercise to support the increased metabolic demand of the working tissues. This is accomplished through the augmentation of several parameters including heart rate, blood pressure, and vascular tone such as arterial stiffness. Exercise training has been shown to elicit changes in arterial stiffness but the acute effects of exercise on arterial stiffness have not been thoroughly studied. The current study examined the acute effects of no (control), aerobic (30 minutes of cycling at ~70% maximum heart rate), and resistance exercise (30 minutes, 3 sets of 10 repetitions for 6 exercises) on arterial stiffness in healthy males (n=11) utilizing measures of carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity and pulse wave analysis at rest and during recovery for 60 minutes. The exercise sessions utilized were consistent with American College of Sports Medicine guidelines for exercise in healthy individuals. Carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity demonstrated no significant change from resting values throughout recovery for any of the activities (~9 m·s-1). Systemic arterial stiffness values (corrected to a heart rate of 75 bpm) were significantly higher post-resistance exercise than the control and aerobic exercise activities initially (34.2 ± 10.3% vs. 14.2 ± 10.9% and 3.2 ± 12.7%, p<0.05) and remained statistically higher throughout recovery. These results indicate that resistance exercise alone resulted in an increase in systemic arterial stiffness that lasted for at least 60 minutes. In contrast, neither aerobic or resistance activity elicited a change in regional arterial stiffness. Further studies may clarify the time course and mechanisms for changes in arterial stiffness following acute and chronic exercise of various modalities and intensities.

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Medicine and Health Sciences | Sports Sciences