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Strength Training in prevention, treatment, and control of hypertension.

Strength training, as the name suggests, involves the performance of exercises that increase muscular strength and endurance.

Strength programmes are commonly associated to lifting weight; however, they can include calisthenic, isometric and plyometric techniques.

With a well performed strength training plan an individual can experience significant functional benefits and improvements of health and wellbeing. Some of these benefits are increased bone, tendon, ligament, and muscle strength, improved joint function (reducing potential for injury), increased bone density, faster metabolism, improved fitness,and cardiac function.

This blog post will shed some light on how strength training can lower the risk of cardiovascular episodes.

Studies have demonstrated that reduced muscle mass has negative metabolic effects that increase by normal ageing or decreased physical activities.

These metabolic effects can lead to a high prevalence of obesity, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and hypertension.

According to Braith et al (2006), these risk factors have been associated with cardiovascular structure and function abnormalities (such as arterial stiffness) that could lead to serious cardiovascular diseases such as Hypertension.

According to Cornelissen et al (2011), hypertension is of the 9 leading factors to cardiovascular diseases, and it’s linked to more than 7 million deaths worldwide every year (13% of total deaths.)

Healthy arteries are flexible, strong, and elastic but hypertension gradually increases the tension on the arteries walls damaging their cells. As a consequence, the fats that enter the bloodstream can build up and reduce the arteries flexibility and could limit the blood flow through the body and to the heart. An increased blood pressure through a weakened artery can enlarge the artery’s wall and could cause life-threatening internal bleeding. This is called Aneurysm and it can happen in any artery (The most common is the largest one: Aorta).

High blood pressure also forces the heart to work harder in order to pump blood through the body and can cause an enlargement of the left ventricle, increasing the risk of a heart attack. Overtime, the overworked heart could start getting weaker till the point that begins to fail (Heart failure).

Hypertension could also damage the brain that doesn’t get enough blood supply leading to strokes and dementia (Mayo Clinic, 2022).

Creating and maintain a healthy lifestyle is critical for the prevention and is an indispensable for the treatment of hypertension.

According to the American College of Sports Medicine (2019) moderate-intensity resistance training in complementation to aerobic training is a key factor for the prevention, treatment, and control of high blood pressure.

Numerous studies have shown that resistance training can lower systolic blood pressure and, according to studies (Sousa et al, 2017), resistance training reduced systolic and diastolic blood pressure in hypertensive subjects and demonstrated the safety of this modality of training technique in these individuals.


  • Abrahin, O., de Sousa, E., Ferreira, A., Rodrigues, R., Alves, E. and Vieira, R., 2018. Comment on “Resistance training alone reduces systolic and diastolic blood pressure in prehypertensive and hypertensive individuals: a meta-analysis”. Hypertension Research, 42(1), pp.26-26.

  • ACSM_CMS. 2022. ACSM Blog. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 17 July 2022].

  • Braith, R. and Stewart, K., 2006. Resistance Exercise Training. Circulation, 113(22), pp.2642-2650.

  • Cornelissen, V., Fagard, R., Coeckelberghs, E. and Vanhees, L., 2011. Impact of Resistance Training on Blood Pressure and Other Cardiovascular Risk Factors. Hypertension, 58(5), pp.950-958.

  • Mayo Clinic. 2022. How high blood pressure can affect the body. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 17 July 2022].

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