Muscle Strengthening Effects of Anabolic-Androgenic Steroids in Resistance Trained Athletes and non-Athletes

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Anabolic-androgenic steroids are a synthetic compound which are structurally related to the male sex hormone, testosterone (Amsterdam et al.,2010, Thiblin and Petersson, 2004). Testosterone has two effects on the human body; first it helps in the development and maintenance of secondary male sexual characteristics and, secondly, it promotes muscle growth. All anabolic-androgenic steroids are derivatives of testosterone and have both anabolic and androgenic properties; which is why the use of the term anabolic-androgenic steroids is more appropriate than anabolic steroids (Kuhn, 2002). All anabolic-androgenic steroids have a varying amount of anabolic and androgenic properties (Kuhn, 2002). Testosterone acts in three ways; first, it binds …show more content…
However, their aim is not to increase physical performance but rather to increase their physical attractiveness (Amsterdam et al.,2010, Cohen et al., 2007). The majority of the literature concludes that the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids does lead to increased muscle mass; however, region of muscle growth and amount of growth varies (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). The increase of muscle mass with the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids is well understood (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). This muscle mass increase is caused by muscle hypertrophy and the formation of new muscle fibers, as well as the increase in muscle nuclei (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004, Kadi et al., 1999). The formation of these new muscle fibers is due to enhancement and incorporation of satellite cells into pre-existing muscle fibers along with the expression of androgen receptors (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). Like muscle mass growth much research has been done on the impact of the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids have on strength (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). The overall consensus is that the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids enhances the effects of strength more than just strength training; however, not all research supports these results (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). The majority of research conducted in the past only focused on athletes who were experienced in strength training and showed the benefits the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids had on their strength (Harthens and Kuipers,

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