Journal of Trainology



July 2021; Vol. 10, No. 2: Pages 10-15

Revisiting the relationship between resistance training dose and strength gains: what is the real role of volume?

Witalo Kassiano, Bruna Costa, Dalton de Lima-Júnior, Petrus Gantois, Fabiano de Souza Fonseca, Leonardo de Sousa Fortes


Resistance training (RT) volume is considered a critical variable to induce neuromuscular adaptations (e.g., increased muscle strength). However, emerging findings have allowed us to revisit the role of volume in strength gains. Objectives: In the present study, we seek to present these emerging findings to discuss the role of RT volume in one-repetition maximum (1RM) strength gains and isometric and isokinetic strength. In addition, we pro-pose alternative ways to test whether or not volume plays a determining role in strength adaptation. Design & methods: We reviewed the literature on RT volume and muscle strength. In addition, we examined the RT literature to provide alternative ways to investigate the effect of volume on changes in strength. Results/conclusions: From the recent findings, we argue that an increase in strength can be achieved through a refined interaction between skill enhancement, regular use of high loads, and neuromuscular fatigue man-agement; these points can be obtained from different RT volumes. From an inquiring point of view, we sug-gest that future investigations that aim to verify the effects of volume on muscle strength may consider the inclusion of high load sessions (80–100% of 1RM), periodically (e.g., every three or four weeks), in both low and high-volume groups, as well as considering the inclusion of different strength measures (e.g., isokinetic, isometric). We believe that this will help to clarify the nature of the relationship between RT volume and strength adaptations.

Received February 26, 2021; accepted July 6, 2021