Törpel A, Brennicke M, Kuck M, Behrendt T, Schega L (2018) Effect of Blood Flow Restriction Training in Combination with a High-Intensity Interval Training on Physical Performance. Int J Sports Exerc Med 4:111.


© 2018 Törpel A, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

RESEARCH ARTICLE | OPEN ACCESS DOI: 10.23937/2469-5718/1510111

Effect of Blood Flow Restriction Training in Combination with a High-Intensity Interval Training on Physical Performance

Alexander Törpel*, Marie Brennicke, Maximilian Kuck, Tom Behrendt and Lutz Schega

Institute III: Sport Science, Chair Health and Physical Activity, Otto Von Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany



We aimed to investigate whether a Blood Flow Restriction Training (BFR) prior to a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) leads to a higher increase in physical performance than a sole HIIT.


24 male participants (18 to 30 years) were randomly assigned to a BFR+HIIT or HIIT group which performed 3 times per week over 4 weeks a HIIT on bicycle-ergometers. Prior to each training session of the HIIT, both groups carried out 4 sets of deep squats without additional load but the BFR+HIIT group performed this exercise under BFR conditions. Immediately before and after the intervention period, the endurance capacity and strength capacity was assessed by a spiroergometry (parameter: maximal power, maximal oxygen consumption per kilogram body weight [VO2max/kg]) and a maximal strength test for the legs [1RM] as well as the Counter Movement Jump [CMJ]. The Growth Hormone (GH) and Insulin-like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1) were measured prior to and after the first and last intervention. Blood lactate concentrations [La] were assessed immediately before and after deep squats as well as after the HIIT during the sixth training session.


The maximal power increased significantly in both groups (BFR+HIIT: + 9.5%, p < 0.001; HIIT: + 4.5%, p = 0.038) but to a higher extent in the BFR+HIIT group (interaction effect: F = 4.80, p = 0.039, ηp2 = 0.179). The VO2max/kg did not change due to the intervention of the BFR+HIIT and HIIT group. Regarding the 1RM and CMJ, a significant improvement in 1RM (p = 0.005) was observed only in the HIIT group. Both, GH and IGF-1 increased significantly immediately after the interventions, but without differences between groups (no interaction effect). La increased during the intervention in a comparable manner among both groups.


The combined intervention efficiently improves the maximal power in context of endurance capacity. Here, the underlying mechanisms have to be clarified in future investigations.