Does Exercise Improve Testosterone Levels?

by Robert Carver

Numerous men across America suffer from erectile dysfunction or other sexual performance issues. These sexual performance problems are caused by low testosterone levels. Research has suggested that exercise can improve and aid the production of testosterone. Scott Isaacs, MD, of Emory University explains that exercise alone will be unable to noticeably help men with severely low testosterone levels. Yet, also states for men whose testosterone level is on the borderline, “I think it’s going to have a much more potent effect.” Men suffering moderately low levels of testosterone will likely see much benefit from a daily exercise regime.

Exercises for Improving Testosterone Levels


  • Multiple studies have found that production of testosterone is boosted by sprinting. A recent study showed that testosterone levels were significantly increased in men after including brief yet intense sprints into their workout regime. The elevated levels of testosterone levels remained high after all the male study participants had fully recovered from the sprint workout.


  • Studies reveal that lifting heavy weights cases an extreme elevation in testosterone production. Full body and heavy exercises such as squats, deadlifts, bench presses, and are ideal for enhancing production of testosterone

Brief Rests during Workout

  • Scientists have evaluated the effectiveness of very brief rest periods during workouts. Researchers found that including these brief rests aided the amount of testosterone elevation experienced from workout. It’s recommended to include several short 120 second rest periods into daily workout regime.

Leg Exercises

  • A prominent study investigated the increase of testosterone in relation to weight training. Male study participants were asked to divide into two groups: arm-only training group and a leg-plus-arm training group. Researchers noted significantly increased testosterone levels in the group that added lower body training to their upper body training regime.

Avoid Repetitive Cardio

  • Brief sprints during aerobic exercise are proven to increase the production of testosterone while unvaried aerobic exercise is shown to contribute to lower testosterone levels. Long endurance sports such as cycling are found to lower testosterone and has the complete opposite effect that weight lifting and weight training has on testosterone production. A study conducted in 2003 study found testosterone levels were significantly lower in cyclists than age-matched weightlifters. Researchers conclude that the low testosterone levels found in endurance athletes is an evolutionary adaptation to give endurance athletes a competitive edge. Increased production of testosterone leads to increased muscle mass which would slow down rather than aid the performance of endurance athletes.

So if you’re trying to boost testosterone, avoid long jaunts on the treadmill, and accept the fact that if you’re going to run marathons or do Ironman triathlon, you may have to settle for slightly lower testosterone levels.

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