Why Women Need Shorter Rest Periods vs. Men During Workouts


Why Women Need Shorter Rest Periods vs. Men During Workouts

Why women need shorter rest periods vs. men during workouts:

By Mauro Simonetti N.D.

Ever wonder why men we feel like we need more rest between our sets than women do? Ever notice women are able to go for that other set quicker than we can? If you noticed this, it is not your imagination and men, if you felt ashamed by this, don’t be because it is only a scientific reality of our human functions.

First thing to know is that there are many researches that show that women have a reduced ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate), which is your main energy system, lower blood lactate, lower epinephrine and lower glycogen depletion of type 1 muscle. Science has not yet understood why this is but we are suspecting it is due to hormonal differences.

Also, women have different muscle recruiting patterns than men and this affects muscular endurance. The muscle activations are a little different and research has shown that women may have increased muscular endurance because of a more effective activation pattern than men. Women fatigue less quickly because they recruit more synergistic muscle groups. Men fail to recruit these muscles and therefore have less muscular endurance than women.

Another reason is due to blood flow restriction within the muscle during contraction which may reduce muscular endurance. Women had better blood flow throughout the muscle and fatigued less quickly compared to men. Even though there is no difference in blood flow between men and women, men’s larger muscle mass and higher intensity muscle contraction may constrict capillaries, and contribute to the decreased blood flow and reduced muscular endurance and therefore, men fatigue earlier because of a less efficient metabolism within the muscle when compared to women.

So there you have it. I hope this short article explains why women need lower rest periods than men so for all you coaches, when you write up a program, make sure your prescription for rest periods are shorter for your female clients.

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