Short Term Aquatic Resistance Program Improves Strength & Body Composition

Posted by Jane Diack on

Aquastrength is always looking at the latest research to develop evidence based functional fitness programs" 

Purpose of Study:

To analyze the effect of short term periodized aquatic resistance program on upper-limb maximum strength, leg muscle power and body composition in fit young men.

Subjects and Methods:

  • 12 subjects completed the study
  • 7 subjects performed H20 Resistance Exercise
  • 5 subjects control group (maintained their regular activities)
  • The H20 group trained with aquatic drag devices with a controlled cadence of movement.
  • Training volume and intensity were increased progressively. 3 days per week for 8 weeks.


Significant increases in upper limb strength and leg muscle power was observed in the aquatic group.

Also significant increases in the circumference and muscle areas of the arm occurred with a significant decrease in pectoral and abdominal skin folds.

The circumference, muscular areas and local fat of lower limbs did not change significantly.

Take away message:

Even though muscle contractions are predominantly concentric in nature during aquatic resistive training it has been shown that strength gains can occur.

When performing aquatic training for increasing strength and weight loss it is important to control the pace of movement and the type of aquatic resistance equipment used so that maximum muscle fiber recruitment can occur with each repetition.

Similar to land based training, a progressive program design needs to occur in the water for the most beneficial training effects to take place.

Research Conducted by:

Juan Colado, Victor Tella, Travis Triplett, Luis Gonzalez

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research 2009


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