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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2018 December;58(12):1808-14

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.17.07969-5


language: English

Effects of Muay Thai training frequency on body composition and physical fitness in healthy untrained women

Jennifer A. RAPKIEWICZ 1, João P. NUNES 2 , Jerry L. MAYHEW 3, Alex S. RIBEIRO 2, Hellen C. NABUCO 2, Maria T. FÁVERO 1, Emerson FRANCHINI 4, Matheus AMARANTE DO NASCIMENTO 1, 2

1 Paraná State University (UNESPAR), Paranavaí, Brazil; 2 Laboratory of Metabolism, Nutrition, and Exercise, Physical Education and Sport Center, Londrina State University, Londrina, Brazil; 3 Exercise Science Program, Truman State University, Kirksville, MO, USA; 4 School of Physical Education and Sport, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

BACKGROUND: The purpose of the study was to compare the effects of different frequencies of Muay Thai training on body composition, and physical fitness in healthy untrained women.
METHODS: Twenty women were randomly assigned to one of two training groups: G2X (N.=9) performed Muay Thai twice a week, while G3X (N.=11) performed the same program three times a week, both for 13 weeks. Anthropometric dimensions, fat-free mass, fat mass, resting metabolic rate, VO2max, upper-body and abdominal muscle endurance, explosive leg power, agility, flexibility, and dietary intake were measured at pre and post-training. Training intensity was estimated every training session by rating of perceived exertion with a Borg 10-point scale.
RESULTS: Both groups significantly improved in all measured physical fitness variables, without any significant changes in body composition. G2X was not significantly different from G3X on any variable. Average relative changes for all performance variables in G2X and G3X were 28.5% and 27.5%, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: Thirteen-weeks of Muay Thai practice can improve physical fitness in women, regardless of weekly frequency (two or three times a week). This suggests that instructors and coaches can structure a Muay Thai training program based on a twice or three-times per week protocol in order to promote positive changes in several important outcomes related to health for healthy untrained women. Moreover, practitioners are able to choose their training frequency preference, since both frequencies provided similar adaptations.

KEY WORDS: Martial arts - Motor skills - Body composition - Boxing - Women

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