Cardiovascular diseases cause 17 million deaths annually worldwide, of which hypertension is responsible for 9.4 million and a 7% burden of disease. High blood pressure is responsible for 45% of deaths from heart disease and 51% of deaths from stroke.
The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to quantify the effect of isometric resistance training on systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial blood pressure (SBP, DBP, and MAP, respectively) values in normotensive adult participants.
This study was registered with the PROSPERO database. Eligible studies were identified after performing a systematic search within the following databases: PubMed, Scielo, BioMed Central, Clinical Trials, EMBASE, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and EBSCO.
Randomized controlled trials that categorized participants as normotensive according to the guidelines of the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology were included.
Systematic review with meta-analysis.
Level 1.
Data related to participant characteristics, exercise programs, level of evidence, risk of bias, Consensus on Exercise Reporting Template, and outcomes of interest were systematically reviewed independently by 2 authors.
A total of 6 randomized controlled trials were included. The following reductions in blood pressure (compared with the control group) were generated by isometric resistance training: SBP (mean difference [MD], -2.83 mm Hg; 95% CI, -3.95 to -1.72; < 0.00001), DBP (MD, -2.73; 95% CI, -4.23 to -1.24; = 0.0003), and MAP (MD, -3.07; 95% CI, -5.24 to -0.90; = 0.005).
It appears that isometric resistance training reduces SBP, DBP, and MAP in normotensive young adults in a statistically significant and clinically relevant manner. This type of exercise could be considered effective in preventing arterial hypertension.