Hypertrophic response to unilateral concentric isokinetic resistance training

D. J. Housh, T. J. Housh, G. O. Johnson, W. K. Chu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

125 Scopus citations


The purposes of this study were to 1) determine the effect of concentric isokinetic training on strength and cross-sectional area (CSA) of selected extensor and flexor muscles of the forearm and leg, 2) examine the potential for preferential hypertrophy of individual muscles within a muscle group, 3) identify the location (proximal, middle, or distal level) of hypertrophy within an individual muscle, and 4) determine the effect of unilateral concentric isokinetic training on strength and hypertrophy of the contralateral limbs. Thirteen untrained male college students [mean age 25.1 ± 6.1 (SD) yr] volunteered to perform six sets of 10 repetitions of extension and flexion of the nondominant limbs three times per week for 8 wk, using a Cybex II isokinetic dynamometer. Pretraining and posttraining peak torque and muscle CSA measurements for both the dominant and nondominant limbs were determined utilizing a Cybex II isokinetic dynamometer and magnetic resonance imaging scanner, respectively. The results indicated significant (P < 0.0008) hypertrophy in all trained muscle groups as well as preferential hypertrophy of individual muscles and at specific levels. None of the muscles of the contralateral limbs increased significantly in CSA. In addition, significant (P < 0.0008) increases in peak torque occurred for trained forearm extension and flexion as well as trained leg flexion. There were no significant increases in peak torque, however, for trained leg extension or for any movement in the contralateral limbs. These data suggest that concentric isokinetic training results in significant strength and hypertrophic responses in the trained limbs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)65-70
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Applied Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1992


  • contralateral
  • cross-sectional area
  • cross-training
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • strength

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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