More repetitions or slower repetitions?
- Body & Gym Posts
- 09 Oct, 2019
One of the most discussed discussions is nevertheless gaining muscle growth in all possible ways and which methods you can best maintain for this. To fully deplete a muscle in order to gain as much muscle growth as possible, we would like to use the best tips and advice to realize this.
What is a rep?
In almost every exercise we use a muscle contraction, which is the length of the muscle that we make to perform the movement. The muscle gets longer with the eccentric, or negative phase of the movement. An example of this is lowering the bar when bench pressing. If you hold the rod for a second at this heavy point, we call this the static or isometric repeat phase. The muscles are in fact under maximum tension at which the muscle tissue contracts. The muscles do not get longer or shorter at this stage.
When you push the rod upwards again, you use the concentric, or positive, phase of the exercise. The muscle is stronger than gravity and is thereby made shorter. In addition, there is another moment in which you take a (very short) break until you begin your next repetition.
To continuously maintain as much tension as possible on the muscle fibers during your set, you perform these 3, or 4, phases directly after each other. These 4 components are often used in various methods and demonstrated by means of figures. For example, 3-1-2-0. Based on this, the eccentric (negative) phase is performed in 3 seconds, 1 seconds are held at the bottom during the isometric phase, the concentric (positive) phase is performed in 2 seconds (ie pushing the rod up) and is performed at the top no rest, 0 seconds, so you immediately start a new repetition at the top in the same way. For some exercises, for example, the classic barbell curl or deadlift, the eccentric phase is the first one you perform.
We are the strongest in the eccentric phase. Does that also mean that we can gain the most muscle growth in this phase? Research has shown that both muscle contractions are equally important for maximum muscle growth. It is therefore wise to bring both phases to the attention and not to focus solely on the eccentric or only the concentric phase. It is therefore best to vary wellërun at different rates so that you activate all muscle fibers in all different possible ways.
You often hear the term "explosive" come by when it comes to developing strength during training. Does explosive training also lead to more muscle growth? Research has shown that power trainers who perform explosive repetitions, in addition to a demonstrable increase in strength, also achieved more muscle growth. This is due to the intensity of the set, or the rep and the volume, so the number of sets that you perform. The art of weight training is to intensify the exercises to stimulate as many muscle fibers as possible. You can increase the intensity by adding more explosiveness or power to your repetitions, or by simply using more weight if this is not at the expense of the execution. In addition, it has been shown that explosive movements have a more stimulating effect on the burning of calories. Win win!
In the bodybuilding world, however, it is not advisable to perform as much expolisivity as possible during your repetitions, at least for a lot of exercises that are regularly discussed, it is impossible to perform them explosively. Think of a deadlift with maximum weight or a leg press. Maintaining a correct training pace is important in order to use as many muscle fibers as possible for maximum muscle growth.
The eccentric, and as we also call negative, phase of the movement can be performed in several different ways. For example, one person places the focus on this part of the trajectory somewhere else than on the other. For example, some assume a perfect negative focus by executing the movement extremely slowly, while others execute it more precisely. The eccentric phase is, as discussed above, lowering the weight, that is the opposite of the concentric phase, pushing it away. By lowering the weight in the eccentric (or negative) phase, we also mean lowering, not dropping, which unfortunately happens regularly, especially with heavier exercises. By dropping the weight you offer no resistance to the weight so you take the tension off the muscles and none hypertrophy creates. The resistance you offer when lowering must be controlled, you must feel the muscles working from start to finish of the movement. In addition to the minimal effectiveness of dropping, it is also quite unsafe and most ego-lifters provide a deafening effect in the training room.
Because you are stronger in the eccentric phase than in the concentric it is therefore optional to use a heavier weight when you focus on the eccentric movement of the repetition. The concentric movement can be performed '' super slow '' with full concentration, but this can of course also be applied to the eccentric phase, or perhaps both at the same time. We talk about a heavier weight eccentric overload. We call it the pace eccentric volume. Due to a lot of discussions about the correct way of eccentric training, so focused on negative training, we assume either an overload in weight or an overload in volume. As long as the eccentric overload is applicable. It has been demonstrated several times that eccentric overload is a great way for hypertrophy. Although this works very positively for building muscle mass, that does not mean that you should always use this for your workouts. This is because you always have to apply an overload in steps if you want to make a lot of progress. As you may already know, every workout should go a step further, something that again surprises and challenges your muscles. If you do not handle this in a calm manner, you have the chance to run into a training platform fairly quickly, so that you make little or no progress. And that is of course what we want to prevent!
Eccentric Overloading for more muscle growth?
Why is the eccentric overloading in for example slow eccentrics, the volume so positive for muscle growth? Type II muscle fibers are used in the eccentric phase than we use in the concentric phase of the movement, while the total number of muscle fibers that we use is less. This load is therefore good for muscle growth when the eccentric phase is performed slowly. This allows you to activate more of the type II muscle fibers and you therefore ensure more stress and therefore more damage to the muscles. As is generally discussed, the amount of muscle damage realizes more muscle growth, although it has never been specifically shown in which sizes this is feasible.
Another good argument why slow eccentrics can contribute to muscle load is the TUT, the Time under Tension as we call it. The TUT is the duration that a muscle is under tension during exercise, or during repetition only. Take for example a working set of approximately 10 repetitions where you perform the exercise in 4 seconds (for example 1-3-0). In this, your muscles are in total longer under tension during the entire set than if you also lower it in 1 seconds and therefore use a repetition rate of 1-1-0. Here too, several investigations are underway and several opinions have been encountered. For example, it is also claimed that the TUT during a work set has less influence than the total TUT during a training. This is based on the total load of the training and the total volume. If you alternate the heavier sets with lighter sets during training, for example, they can be performed slower or with more repetitions your TUT can be determined better from this than looking at a single TUT of a working set. Because you use more type II muscle fibers at a lower weight and higher number of repetitions and therefore grow better at a lower weight in combination with many repetitions, it is advisable to use both low and high repetitions to ensure the highest possible intensity during the training to ensure an overload and maximum load on both the type I as the type II muscle fibers.
What is the best training pace?
Training pace and volume actually run into each other. If you use more volume, you can only maintain a slower pace and vice versa. For example, if you squat with 80 kilos and do slower repetitions, then you should do fewer repetitions (if you do well) than if you do this at a faster pace. The TUT therefore remains the same size.
But what is better? Research has shown that a higher number of repetitions to muscle failure resulted in a slower response of protein synthesis than in the group that did a lower number of repetitions and performed them more slowly. Because it was only concluded that protein synthesis went better, we cannot yet establish whether doing slower and fewer repetitions to achieve more muscle growth in the longer term than a higher volume at a faster pace.
Although other studies suggest that the pace of repetition does not matter if you train for muscle failure. For example, with 8 you could gain the same amount of muscle growth with repetitions with a heavier weight when you train up to muscle failure and with more repetitions with a lighter weight training until muscle failure. Unfortunately, no concrete research has been completed on this.
For example, it is suggested that slow eccentrics for the biceps work more positively for growth than a repeat of just a few seconds. This is because, according to research, the larger TUT, time under tension, activates more type II muscle fibers, causing the metabolic stress is increased. For example, heavier muscle load is equated with improved muscle growth. In addition, it is also suggested that the slow eccentrics are more consuming growth hormone able to realize.
Recently that too few scientific conclusions have been shown about the TUT for slow repetitions versus the TUT for more repetitions for building muscle mass, we can conclude from the studies that several aspects can lead to a positive advantage. In order to apply the above discussed techniques, we can therefore get started in the gym to provide one progressive overload to gain as much muscle growth as possible from it.
As is generally known, 6-15 repetitions per set can best be used for building muscle mass. For example, no optimum training pace is known. Here too, there is only a fairly broad answer, so we can assume 2-6 seconds for a whole repeat. It is recommended to hold 1 to 2 seconds for the concentric phase and a max of approximately 3 (here too opinions are divided) of the eccentric phase.
The most important thing is that the resistance is sufficient and the tension on the muscles is taken into consideration. Therefore, make sure that you have a very strong mind-muscle connection in every way of training. This is the most important, but unfortunately most forgotten muscle. This muscle is in fact between your ears but can, if under control, ensure the best results. So always make sure that you "feel your muscles" working during your repetitions. Focus your thought on all the muscle fibers that you activate and feel firmly under tension.
You will also see that weight is certainly not the most important thing. A weight that is too heavy is often at the expense of the mind-muscle connection because you can no longer focus on the muscle you train. Take for example a Bicep curl; when someone uses a heavy weight and unconfirmedly tries to push the heavy weight up and down 8 times, the person next to a possible short-term injury will also be able to focus less on the feeling of movement and the activated muscle fibers. Someone who uses a slightly lighter (but still sufficiently heavy) weight and can better focus on activating the muscle fibers will therefore have more muscle activation. Tightening well by squeezing hard when you hold the bar on the top tip during the bicep curl can be very essential for muscle growth.
Recently that no conclusion has been drawn about the implementation of slow reps for muscle growth, these can still be very effective for developing the mind-muscle connection should you have difficulty with this. Because you perform the exercises slowly, it is easier for you to teach yourself to fully focus on the activated muscles that are under tension.
Application of techniques and rates
It is also possible to focus on tempo training. For example, you can apply a paused rep. Here you hold on for a while at the midpoint of the exercise, often around 2 to 3 seconds to train the target muscle in an isometric way. So you can endlessly varyëin performing your repetitions and in the training rates. Consider changing the tempo in both the concentric and eccentric phases, holding onto the center point or starting from a dead point are interesting examples.
For example, different training techniques cause a lot of overload because you surprise your muscles again and again. Take, for example, a drop set where you perform multiple sets directly one after the other and the weight reduces the pet set. Maybe you can train even further than muscle failure by taking a little break after the last failures. We call this a rest pause set. The application of different techniques is not only indispensable for muscle growth, but also very positive for our mind. This way you keep your training fun and challenging which makes it easier to keep up your progress with pleasure!