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Sex differences in resting hemodynamics and arterial stiffness following 4 weeks of resistance versus aerobic exercise training in individuals with pre-hypertension to stage 1 hypertension

DOI: 10.1186/2042-6410-2-9

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In total, 40 moderately active, pre-hypertensive or stage 1 essential hypertensive male (M) and female (F) participants aged 40 to 60 years were randomly divided into four groups: M AE, M RE, F AE, and F. Each group exercised at moderate intensity, 3 days/week for 4 weeks. Hemodynamic, vascular and blood-flow data were collected before and after exercise training.Men showed a significant increase in central pulse wave velocity following RE while females showed no significant changes (12 ± to 13.9 ± vs. 9.2 ± to 9.6 ± m/s, respectively). RE showed significantly greater increases in peak blood flow when compared to AE (F RE 15 ± to 20 ± vs. F AE 17.5 ± to19.5 ±, M RE 19 ± to 24 ± vs M AE 21 ± to 25 ± ml* 100 ml*min, respectively). In addition, systolic and diastolic BP decreased greater for women following RE when compared to AE whereas men showed comparable decreases in BP following either exercise mode.Moderate-intensity RE training may be a more favorable for women as a treatment option for hypertension because of greater decreases in diastolic BP and significant increases in flow-mediated dilation without concomitant increases in arterial stiffness, compared with their male counterparts.Hypertension exhibits sexual dimorphism; women have lower systolic blood pressure (SBP) levels than men from puberty through their mid-fifties, whereas the opposite is true after the sixth decade of life [1]. Hypertension is not only more prevalent in women than in men, but also more severe and less amenable to control, especially in older women [2].Moderate-intensity aerobic exercise (AE) is recommended as a non-pharmacological therapy for the management of raised BP because it reduces both SBP and diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and improves arterial function in pre- to stage 1 essential hypertension in both sexes [3]. Our laboratory previously showed that resistance exercise (RE) also reduced BP but to a slightly lesser extent than AE in a study with a predominantly male populat


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