Research examining postactivation potentiation (PAP) in recreationally trained individuals (RTI) shows mixed results. Because the balance of PAP and fatigue after heavy-load exercise influences performance outcomes, recovery duration after the stimulus might explain inconsistent results noted in RTI. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of recovery duration after a potentiating stimulus on muscular power in RTI. Twelve healthy RTI males (age = 23 +/- 1 yr, height = 174.6 +/- 2.5 cm, mass = 86.3 +/- 6.6 kg, 1 repetition maximum [1RM]:mass = 1.4 +/- 0.1, body fat = 15.1 +/- 2.5 %) minimally possessing 1 year of back squat experience participated. A control session assessed baseline measures on a 30-second Wingate Test. During experimental sessions, subjects performed a back squat exercise (1 set of 5 repetitions at 85% 1RM), rested for 5, 10, 15, or 20 minutes, and performed the Wingate Test. No significant differences existed among control and experimental conditions in all outcome variables; however, maximal values (regardless of rest duration) for absolute peak power (APpwr) (+7.1%), relative peak power (RPpwr) (+7.1%), and fatigue index (FI) (+8.9%) significantly differed from respective control values. The rest duration eliciting maximal PAP significantly correlated (r = -0.771) with relative 1RM. Although recovery duration failed to influence performance after a heavy-load exercise in RTI, discrepancies in individual strength might have influenced the time subjects potentiated. These results suggest stronger subjects might potentiate with less rest after a stimulus (5-10 min), whereas weaker subjects require longer rest durations (15-20 min).
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