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Isometric Strength between Olympic and Hexagonal Barbells and Relationship to Countermovement Jump
The hexagonal barbell is a commonly used implement for strength and power development. However, as it is a relatively novel tool, little is known of the performance differences between a hexagonal (hex) bar and an Olympic bar. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to compare isometric performance between hex bar and Olympic bar at the mid-thigh and deadlift position. Isometric performance was then compared to dynamic performance via countermovement jump. Twenty resistance trained men (age = 24.05 ± 2.09 years, ht = 178.07 ± 7.05 cm, mass = 91.42 ± 14.44kg) volunteered to participate. Participants performed isometric mid-thigh pulls (MTP) and isometric deadlifts (DL) utilizing the Olympic bar (OL) and both low (LH) and high (HH) handles on the hex bar. Isometric performance was then compared to dynamic countermovement jump (CMJ) performance. Joint angle was recorded for all pulls and the countermovement portion of the jump. MTP force variables were greater than DL for all lifts, with the only difference between bars seen at RFD 50ms, where HH produced greater RFD than LH. MTP joint angles were more extended than DL angles, and the strongest correlation between isometric and dynamic performance was seen between DL PGRF and CMJ impulse. The findings are likely due to the biomechanical characteristics of the MTP and DL as well as the similarity in joint angle between the DL and CMJ positions.
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