Association Between Maximal Bench Press Strength and Isometric Handgrip Strength Among Breast Cancer Survivors

Published:August 16, 2016DOI:



      To characterize the relationship between 1-repetition maximum (1-RM) bench press strength and isometric handgrip strength among breast cancer survivors.


      Cross-sectional study.




      Community-dwelling breast cancer survivors (N=295).


      Not applicable.

      Main Outcome Measure

      1-RM bench press strength was measured with a barbell and exercise bench. Isometric handgrip strength was measured using an isometric dynamometer, with 3 maximal contractions of the left and right hands. All measures were conducted by staff with training in clinical exercise testing.


      Among 295 breast cancer survivors, 1-RM bench press strength was 18.2±6.1kg (range, 2.2–43.0kg), and isometric handgrip strength was 23.5±5.8kg (range, 9.0–43.0kg). The strongest correlate of 1-RM bench press strength was the average isometric handgrip strength of both hands (r=.399; P<.0001). Mean difference analysis suggested that the average isometric handgrip strength of both hands overestimated 1-RM bench press strength by 4.7kg (95% limits of agreement, −8.2 to 17.6kg). In a multivariable linear regression model, the average isometric handgrip strength of both hands (β=.31; P<.0001) and age (β=−.20; P<.0001) were positively correlated with 1-RM bench press strength (R2=.23).


      Isometric handgrip strength is a poor surrogate for 1-RM bench press strength among breast cancer survivors. 1-RM bench press strength and isometric handgrip strength quantify distinct components of muscular strength.


      List of abbreviations:

      BMI (body mass index), CI (confidence interval), PAL (Physical Activity and Lymphedema), 1-RM (1-repetition maximum)
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