Types of Muscle Contractions – Weight Lifting Tempo

Types of Muscle Contractions – Weight Lifting Tempo


hi guys Step from Performance Ground
welcome to our new PG tips this is talking about four phases of movement
and the importance of tempo within movement when we’re talking about tempo
we’re talking about the speed that a repetition of any given movement is
performed at so when we talk about movement we break that down into four
phases so the first phase of any movement is first by Isometric phase so
in this phase there’s no change of length of that muscle whatever the the
main agonist is it’s literally just storing potential energy ready for use
in the next phase movement so it’s literally just a static so for example
I’m going to show this later if I’m about to do a squat in my starting
position all muscles are working but they’re not changing length therefore
I’m in my first part of the movement my first isometric phase after that closely
follows is part two of our movement phase which is the eccentric phase so
what I mean by eccentric is I’m using the mechanical resistance to store
potential energy my muscles are actually lengthening under tension so again I’m
going to show you some practical example but in the squat as I’m descending my
muscles are actually the main agonists are actually lengthening under tension
I’m letting gravity to get me down to the bottom not actually applying any
added force mechanically through my muscles to help me get to the bottom of
that movement I’m literally just using the weight itself to lower me down but
I’m controlling it with my muscles so they’re lengthening under tension then
the next part of movement we have our second isometric phase also known as the
amortisation phase so when I say amortisation what that means is it’s the
transfer of energy from stored potential energy into kinetic energy so that
weight that I’ve used the resistance I have used the mechanical load to get me
to the bottom of that squat all that energy that stored while off my muscles
were lengthening on detention so this is essentially a pause for the shift
between the eccentric and then the final phase movement the concentric it’s
changing that potential energy that those muscles have just thought on
mechanical strain is about to change that into kinetic energy that my muscles then
use to rappel myself up which obviously brings us nicely to the fourth and final
phase of movement the concentric as I said this the final phase of movement so
this is now where my muscles are actually active essentially so they are
active in the previous phases I mean they’re not changing legs here and they
are working but when I say actually I mean actually moving through space so
concentric is that shift from the stored potential energy and we’re now
using that kinetic energy to actually propel ourselves up in that movement so
if I just grab myself a little dumbbell I can highlight these four phases so in
this movement this is my starting position so I’m gonna do a bicep curl so
this is my starting position this is my first isometric phase my muscles are
under contraction but they’re not changing length this is actually a bad
example because this is actually the other way round so I then do my
concentric phase first on story energy here whilst my muscles are intentions
I’m then using concentric muscle action to close the distance to shorten the
length of the bicep I’m then in my second isometric phase my amortisation
and that energy is now been that’s just been stored is now being transferred to
work the eccentric portion and lowered that back down under control so starting
position so that’s actually quite bad example to be honest wave highlights the
four different phases and how there are actual breaks in each part of the
movement when we talk about tempo within this structure so if you see on a
program it’s rarely used these days it’s one of those programming variables that
people don’t tend to use as much but it’s actually quite essential if you
want to make particular gains in I don’t know whether that’s hypertrophy or
strength or actually power tempo becomes quite important to allow you to do that
okay so when I’m expressing tempo in my programming it’s gonna look something
like this there’s gonna be four numbers so gonna be one three
one sorry okay so I’ve just made this up and this is like a moderate tempo so
we’ve got our first isometric portions which is one second so I’m just going to
be in my ready position for one second my eccentric phase all concentric so
this is where knowing the movement becomes critically important for both
the coach and the participant whether that’s an athlete or whether that’s a
business person wherever you are at the gym it’s really important that you
understand what the movement is because this could be the concentric or the eccentric portion so in a back squat this would be isometric eccentric isometric
or amortisation and concentric whereas in the bicep curl as I showed this would
be isometric this would be concentric this would be isometric amortisation
and then that would be the eccentric so knowing the movement becomes critically
important I’m going to use this as a back squat example so I’m going to be
at the top of that for one second I’m going to descend for three seconds
relatively slow so it’s well controlled I’m gonna pause for one second so that
amortisation star transfer so that stored potential energy is now becoming
kinetic energy and I’m going to translate that into a three second
uprising back up to the top of the position and then it resets so that’s my
whole movement that’s the four phases of movement then complete so now start
again so it’s one second at the top three seconds down one second at the
bottom three seconds up and I’ll do that for as many sets and reps as prescribed
so I’m now going to demonstrate how that would look in the actual back squat I’m
gonna do a slightly different tempo to what I wrote down earlier I might wanna
do a one three two three just so I can really highlight the amortisation phase
I’m gonna approach the barbell got the bar on my back so this is now my
first phase this is the first isometric phase this is going to be one second all
my muscles are active got my core engaged I’ve got my core my glutes
all engaged my shoulders my deltoids my wrists they’re all engaged but they’re
not changing length they’re remaining the same so this is my first isometric
then I’m going to descend now for three seconds so it’s one-mississippi
two-mississippi three-mississippi so that’s a three count down to the bottom
that was my eccentric so I was resisting a mechanical stress off the bar though
I’ve got to second what on – and now I’m going to translate that stores potential
energy into concentric force so I’m gonna go back up three seconds so
one-mississippi two-mississippi three-mississippi and then one to relax
and I’m gonna do that in real time so I’ve got one one two three one two one
two three one okay so that that is how tempo would
look in a given movement so it doesn’t have to be the squat it can be any
movement patterns that is in your programming when we’re talking about
fast versus slow tempo this reads depends on what your goals are if I’m
doing a slower tempo like that I’m putting more mechanical stress and
chemical strain and time and attention into the active muscles so that agonist
muscles domain all the prime movers what we call them but also all the
antagonists as well as gonna help in that eccentric portion of the movement
we really wanted to use a slow tempo and we’re looking to build hypertrophy the
more stress we’re under it’s going to signal more satellite cells to go and
repair those muscles so it’s actually gonna increase the size of the muscle
cell so it’s going to be a lot more replacement but also if you’re teaching
beginners it’s a really really beneficial way to make sure that they
don’t go up and load too quickly because really really hard work to spend that
long under certain weight for five tempo this is gonna be more beneficial for
people like Olympic weightlifters or powerlifters
they want to express as much force as possible in a short period of time they
don’t want to be spending too long with the bar because that the the sheer
weight that they’re lifting is extremely heavy so you don’t want to be spending
too much time with the barbell in your hand or overhead whatever that position
is so the reason we would prescribe some of the fast tempo is purely to elicit as
much CNS potential as possible get as many muscle cells active and most units
recruited as possible in order to express that by lifting heavier weight
so for a regular Joe I like to do something called an oxidative tempo
which is at zero to zero to get it zero Institute oxygen it’s a that’s an
effective weight and a safe way of using tempo on a daily basis
it’s just moving in and out under control if you’re a beginner and you’re
looking at safety as your primary aspect but you’re also looking to build
hypertrophy then slow tempo so anything up to upwards of six seconds per portion
can be effective and then if you’re an Olympic weightlifter or a power lifter
although the bar might necessarily move that fast trying to use it an explosive
temper or an exp or a one-one-one-one tempo it’s going to be much more
effective for you in order to elicit as much muscle potential as possible and
potential energy and translate that into speed or bar
and appropriate lift of load so just to summarize tempo is a really really
important programming variable that should be considered when you’re trying
to make particular gains in particular element and there have been studies
however takings by Schoenfeld you did a meta-analysis in 2016 that there is
transfer at slower tempo that you can actually still elicit more power when
you actually come to do in your explosive movements so actually training
all the muscles and movements at a slow tempo and then just expressing that and
translating that into a full movement so I know doing slow tempo squats and
transferring that into a full speed deadlift if you are a power lifter it’s
actually shown some good carryover and it’s also led to increase muscle size
and hypertrophy as well so don’t be afraid to use slow tempo give it a shot
if you’re not getting where you want to be with your hypertrophy programs
I’ve been Stefan please check out the blog as well as loads more great content
in there about you’ve got some tables in the blog that you can check out in terms
of prepare prescription for your particular tempos please give that a
read like share and subscribe and I’ll see you next time

3 thoughts on “Types of Muscle Contractions – Weight Lifting Tempo

  1. Read our article on "4 Types of Muscle Contractions" https://trainwithpg.com/4-types-of-muscle-contractions/

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