Determination and comparison of time under tension required to perform 8, 10 and 12-RM loads in the bench press exercise

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Study aim: To determine and compare the time under tension (TUT) required to perform 8, 10 and 12 repetition maximum (RM) loads in the bench press exercise.

Material and methods: Twenty men (24.17 ± 4.69 years) were selected intentionally and properly. We included in the study physically active individuals, with a weekly frequency of physical activity of at least two days for six months, and excluded individuals with injury or pain that could interfere with the correct execution of the exercise and individuals with positive PAR-Q. The 10-RM test consisted in performing ten consecutive repetitions with maximum overload and the highest speed in bench press exercise on the Smith machine. After 48 h, 10-RM sets were performed with the load obtained in the 10-RM load testing. The TUT in 10-RM was verified through kinematics using the timing technique of the Kinovea software.

Results: The RM loads and TUT obtained during the retest session showed normal distribution between subjects. However, no significant differences were found between the loads 8, 10 and 12-RM within and between subjects (p < 0.05). The verified TUT showed a difference from 8 to 10-RM and from 8 to 12-RM, but no significant difference was found between TUT protocols for 10 and 12-RM (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: The study results enable evaluation of TUT in bench press exercise on the Smith machine for the study sample, allowing, for this group, the prediction and control of training intensity through the TUT.

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