We studied the effects of high intensity resistance exercise training on bone metabolism in 17 young adult Oriental males (23-31 years) by measuring sensitive biomarkers of bone formation and resorption. The subjects were assigned to a training group and a sedentary group. The training group followed a weight training program three times per week for 4 months. In the training group, serum osteocalcin concentration and serum bone-specific alkaline phosphatase activity were significantly increased within the first month after the beginning of resistance exercise training, and the elevated levels remained throughout the training period, while there was no significant change in plasma procollagen type-I C-terminal concentration. Urinary deoxypyridinoline excretion was transiently suppressed and returned to the initial value but was never stimulated during the 4 months. These results suggest that the resistance exercise training enhanced bone formation without prior bone resorption. In the sedentary group, there was no significant difference in bone metabolic markers except plasma procollagen type-I C-terminal, which continuously decreased during the experimental period. There were no significant changes in total and regional bone mineral density in either group. In conclusion, (1) resistance exercise training increased markers of bone formation, while it transiently suppressed a marker of bone resorption, and (2) such adaptive changes of bone metabolism to resistance exercise training occurred during the early period of the training, before changes in bone density were observable through densitometry.
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