Korean J Sports Med.  2016 Jun;34(1):65-71. 10.5763/kjsm.2016.34.1.65.

Acute Resistance Exercise Attenuates the Cardiovascular Reactivity to Cold Pressor Test in Healthy Adults

  • 1Department of Sport Science, The Health and Integrative Physiology Laboratory, University of Seoul, Seoul, Korea. syjae@uos.ac.kr


Increased cardiovascular reactivity to sympathetic challenge is associated with increased risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Acute aerobic exercise blunts stress related cardiovascular reactivity, but whether acute resistance exercise attenuates cardiovascular reactivity is unknown. We tested the hypothesis that acute resistance exercise will attenuate hemodynamic reactivity to a cold pressor test in healthy adults. Using a randomized cross-over trial, 20 healthy adults (9 males, 11 females; age, 26±5 years; body mass index, 23.85±3.19 kg/m2) completed two testing sessions, separated by 1 week. Sessions consisted of either a control condition or an acute resistance exercise prior to cold pressor testing (two sets, eight exercises, 40%-60% of 1 repetition maximum for upper and lower extremity). Blood pressure and heart rate measured at baseline, 30 seconds, and 120 seconds during a 3-minute cold pressor test (ice water, 4℃), and 30 seconds and 120 seconds post-cold pressor testing, respectively. During the cold pressor test, there were significant increases in blood pressures and heart rate (p<0.05) in both groups. However, acute resistance exercise attenuated increases in systolic blood pressure, but not heart rate, compared with the control (all p<0.05 for interact effects). These findings show that the cold pressor test significantly increases blood pressures and heart rate in healthy adults, but an acute bout of resistance exercise attenuated the hemodynamic response to the cold pressor test. Therefore, resistance exercise may have a favorable effect on cardiovascular reactivity to sympathetic activation in healthy adults.


Blood pressure; Cardiovascular system; Cold temperature; Resistance training
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