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The Effects of an Upper Body Conditioning Stimulus on Lower Body PAPE: a Pilot Study (IJSC CR)

The International Journal of Strength and Conditioning is the world's first in S&C and Sport Science to be 'Diamond' Open Access. We have a new article now in Community Review by Grant Laskin, Scott Talpey, and Robert Gregory. Please help take part in the review process by clicking the link below to view the Journal and then access the pdf. Through the plugin you can then add comments for the authors.


Complex training where a high-load conditioning stimulus (CS) is performed prior to a biomechanically similar plyometric movement has been demonstrated to acutely enhance the performance of the plyometric movement in a phenomenon called post-activation performance enhancement (PAPE). Despite the positive influence PAPE can have on power production, the abundance of research has only investigated PAPE locally while comparing biomechanically similar movements. The purpose of this study was to determine if a heavy barbell bench press could elicit PAPE in a lower body plyometric movement.

Eight (n = 8) resistance-trained males performed one set of countermovement jumps (CMJs) before (pre-CS) and three sets of CMJs after (post-CS) a heavy bench press set. Changes in muscle activation, jump height, work, power output, and rate of force development (RFD) during the early (E-RFD) and late (L-RFD) stages were compared between pre-CS and post-CS. The level of significance was set at p < .05.

There were no significant differences in muscle activation, jump height, work, power output, or E-RFD (p > .05). There was a significant increase in L-RFD between pre-CS and the final set of jumps post-CS (p = .01). These results suggest that an upper body CS may not influence PAPE in the lower body. However, pairing a high-load upper body exercise with a lower body plyometric does not seem disadvantageous, and could be implemented as a strategy to maximize workout time efficiency with proper fatigue management incorporation.

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