Faigenbaum, A., O'Connell, J., Glover, S., Larosa Lound, R., & Westcott, W. (2000). Comparison of different resistance training protocols on upper body strength and endurance development in children. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 32(5), Supplement abstract 1366.

The effects of four different training protocols on upper body muscular strength and endurance development in untrained boys and girls were studied. Two training sessions per week for eight weeks were provided. Exercises included 10 strength exercises on child-size machines and concluded with medicine ball activities. The test task was the number of vertical chest passes that could be performed to volitional fatigue. The groups were:

Upper body strength and muscular endurance gains were evidenced by groups that used 13-15 RM loads and 6-8 RM loads followed by 6-8 medicine ball chest passes. Medicine ball alone (G4) or low repetition strength exercises (G1) were not sufficient to yield significant improvements.

Implication. If children are to perform one exercise set, repetitions should be relatively high (13-15), the load moderate, and the exercise completed to exhaustion. A combination of low repetitions and medicine ball work produces similar results.

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