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  1. #35
    Iron Addict ChromeHearts's Avatar
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    hey warrior can you post info on Max-OT ?

  2. #36

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    Warrior my man really good Job!!!

  3. #37

    Default The Max-OT Basics

    Quote Originally Posted by ChromeHearts View Post
    hey warrior can you post info on Max-OT ?

    The Max-OT Basics
    4 to 6 - 6 to 9 - 2 to 3 Minutes - 30 to 40 Minutes - 5 to 7 Days
    Max-OT follows a specific and proven set of parameters that are key to maximizing muscle growth. These specific parameters are the underlying core of Max-OT's physiological impact on muscle. If you remember one thing from this lesson remember this - a muscle will only adapt (grow) if it is forced to do so. The mechanics of Max-OT's are designed to force muscle to grow each and every workout. As far as I am concerned, if you aren't growing from each workout you're wasting your time. In a nut shell, but nowhere near complete, you can summarize Max-OT like this:

    1. Each workout should last approximately 30 to 40 minutes.
    2. Train only 1 or 2 muscle groups per workout/day.
    3. Do 6 to 9 total heavy sets per muscle group.
    4. Do 4 to 6 reps per set.
    5. Rest 2 to 3 minutes between sets. (STR)
    6. Train each muscle group once every 5 to 7 days. (ITR)
    7. Take a 1 week break from training every 8 to 10 weeks.

    As you can see there is a small bit of leeway in each of these rules. A very small bit. Max-OT is designed specifically around these parameters. To be completely successful and get the maximum benefits from Max-OT you must follow these rules exactly as they are presented. You cannot adapt the rules you like and discard the ones you don't. Each parameter depends on and works with the other parameters. Each workout should last approximately 30 to 40 minutes. If your workouts are lasting more than 40 minutes something is wrong. In fact, they should be much closer to 30 minutes than 40 minutes. Now I understand there are situations at certain gyms - crowds - that make this a tough proposition, but it's very important that your workout is completed in this duration of time. If that means finding another gym to train at then start looking. If you are training with more than one workout partner and this extra man is stretching your workout then you need to make adjustments - lose the third wheel. This imposed time limit fits neatly into Max-OT's fundamental principle - Intensity. Max-OT defined intensity is "Maximum muscle overload in the minimum amount of time." The Max-OT 30 to 40 minute workout offers the following benefits: It's much more feasible to maintain maximum mental and physical intensity for 30 to 40 minutes than for 90 minutes. In fact, after 30 minutes mental focus and intensity start to decline rapidly. Training for 30 to 40 minutes maximizes hormonal spikes related to high-intensity training. Max-OT training maximizes key hormonal output based on intensity and duration. Training for 30 to 40 minutes optimizes the "anabolic-window" high-intensity training provides. Going beyond the 40 minute threshold places you outside the optimum hormonal response time. Training beyond 40 minutes increases the risk of over-training and increases catabolic hormone secretion. As you drift outside the "anabolic-window" you enter a detrimental "catabolic" phase. Training beyond 40 minutes decreases anabolic activity. So as you can see, there are physiological advantages to keeping your workout in the 30 to 40 minute range. And there are definite physiological disadvantages to training beyond 40 minutes. Max-OT is all about efficiency. You'll see the word efficiency used many times throughout this course. Train only 1 or 2 muscle groups per workout/day. Max-OT training involves maximum muscle fiber stimulation and overload in a minimum amount of time. In order to accomplish this, adjustments must be made to achieve these objectives within the desired "optimal-time" parameter. Training one muscle group per workout is paramount to the Max-OT principles as it optimizes key physiological and psychological high-points designed to extract the greatest effect from your training. Every time you train the Max-OT way, you leave the gym fully confident that you performed a workout that will result in muscle growth. The Max-OT "one body-part per day" principle takes advantage of the "duration of maximum intensity" that occurs both physically and mentally when you train. By pre-establishing in your mind that you will only be training 1 muscle group you are able to generate much greater mental focus and intensity. This psychological "edge" directly and favorably impacts physical intensity output. Bottom line, you train each muscle group much harder, achieve greater muscle fiber contraction, greater overload, and spark more muscle growth by establishing 100% physical intensity and 100% mental focus.

    Do 6 to 9 total heavy sets per muscle group.
    For each muscle group you train Max-OT principles stipulate between 6 and 9 total "heavy" sets. That's total heavy sets. No matter how many exercises you do, you will only do between 6 and 9 total heavy sets per muscle group.

    What's a Max-OT "heavy" set?
    A Max-OT heavy set is a set done with a weight that will allow at least 4 reps, but no more than 6 reps. This is very important and fundamental to Max-OT.

    What's a Max-OT set?
    A Max-OT set is a set performed to "positive failure" with a heavy weight for 4 to 6 reps. In other words, a warm-up set is not a "Max-OT set". It is a warm-up set and that's it. So don't count your warm-up sets as part of your 6 to 9 sets per body part. This is important.

    What is "Positive-Failure"?
    Positive failure is when a set is performed to the positive limit of muscle exhaustion. In other words, you are done with a set when you are no longer able to complete a rep on your own. This positive-failure should occur between the fourth and sixth rep. Max-OT does not employ forced reps beyond maybe partial help on the last rep of a set. Contrary to what most have been led to believe, forced reps are counter productive to building muscle. They artificially fatigue the muscle, deplete muscle energy stores, and produce non-progressive overload just to name a few. How many times have you seen people in the gym training and one guy's spotting another and yelling in his face to do two more reps when he really should have stopped two reps ago. Do not do forced reps.

    Do 4 to 6 reps per set.
    This is the heart of Max-OT. You will do 4 to 6 reps on virtually all lifts. There will be some lifts that you will do a little more reps on, but only a few. The 4 to 6 rep range is important and critical to success of Max-OT. We will go deeper into the understanding of this further in the course, but for right now you need to ingrain this "4 to 6 reps" into your mind.

    What is meant by 4 to 6?
    When I say to do between 4 and 6 reps, this means that you will use a weight that is light enough to allow you to getat least 4 reps, but is also heavy enough to where you cannot do any more than 6 reps. If you can't do 4 reps, then the weight is too heavy. If you can do more than 6 reps, then the weight is too light. This is important and is critical component of Max-OT. 4 to 6 reps is the "ideal" rep scheme for building muscle. It allows maximum muscle fiber overload and maximum muscle fiber recruitment.

    Intensity

    A big advantage (aside from the physiological benefits) is that it's much easier to mentally focus your energy on a set of 4 to 6 reps than it is on a set of 10 to 12 reps. Knowing that your set will be short and intense will allow you to generate maximum mental intensity, maximum muscle contraction, and maximum muscular force. Max-OT, in itself, is a more productive muscle building approach that literally acts synergistically with each technique, component, and principle to exponentially accelerate your results. Once you understand that heavy weight is the most influential stimulus for muscle growth, you will continue to strive for greater overload. You will continue to get bigger and stronger in less time.

    Rest 2 to 3 Minutes Between Sets - STR.
    Max-OT, as its name inspires, is all about maximum intensity and maximum overload for maximum results. Building on the principle of lifting with maximum intensity and overload for 4 to 6 reps, between set recovery is very important. I call this "Short Term Recovery" - STR. As you perform reps with heavy weight many physiological reactions are taking place to make all this happen. Muscle contraction takes cellular energy, oxygen, chemical reactions within the cells, and a host of other molecular activities. As each rep is performed you deplete your muscles' capacity to contract with the same force as with the first rep. By the time you get to the 5th rep you have tapped out your muscle intracellular energy capacity. This is Max-OT. It's pushing a muscle to this extreme that produces results. Recovery between sets allows you to repeat this process until enough overload volume has been performed to stimulate and force new muscle growth. The idea of maximum recovery between sets is to maximize your muscles ability to lift maximum weight during the next set. Notice the word "maximum" used a lot here? Between set recovery should last about 2 to 3 minutes. This amount of time allows the muscle to recover its intra-cellular energy stores and flush any lactate out of the muscle that's hanging around from the previous set to restore its anaerobic capacity. Now between set recovery will vary between individuals. Some people just recover much faster than others. As I pointed out earlier you want to strive for is recovery that will allow you to lift the maximum amount of weight for your next set. For some this is 90 seconds, for others it's the entire 3 minutes - sometimes even longer. It's important to be fully recovered before your next set because your ability to maximize the overload on the muscle will directly reflect in the muscle growth it produces. This critical between set recovery phase (STR) is exactly why Max-OT does not incorporate "super-sets", "pre-exhaustion", or other fatigue inducing techniques. We'll get deeper into later, but realize right now that fatigue does not build muscle - overload builds muscle. Fatigue simply fatigues. Once a muscle is fatigued it can't be properly overloaded. Most all lifters confuse fatigue with overload. This will take some logical thinking on your part to separate the two - again because of all the miss-information published in the magazines. Things like "feel the burn" are not what building muscle is about.

    Train each muscle group once every 5 to 7 days.
    Here we go from "immediate" between set muscle recovery (STR) to "intermediate" recovery (ITR) - the recovery between training sessions of the same muscle group. Example: The time between one leg workout until your next leg workout. This is very, very important and one of the major components responsible for facilitating the muscle growth process. Recovery. How many times have you heard this word? Do you really understand what it means and what impact it has on muscle growth? I can answer that with one word -everything. Complete recovery of each muscle group after a Max-OT training session before the same muscle group is subjected to overload again is of equal importance to the overall results as the actual training itself. Recuperation is everything. There are many things you can do to enhance recovery. Nutritional advances have made this a "no-brainer" and almost foolproof process. We will get into that in greater detail later. Right now we are primarily concerned with the "time" between workouts to allow for full muscle recovery. Most training programs have you training way too often. This habit is to hard break. Building muscle is an "excess-endeavor". You always want more. This being a major motivation, it's against normal thought to - do less to get more. The muscle growth process does not occur in the gym. Let me repeat, muscle growth does not occur in the gym. Muscle growth occurs during the recovery period - the critical time between workouts of the same muscle groups. As a result of overload, muscle must adapt to compensate for future overload. This recovery period is the time when muscle is recuperating, growing, and becoming stronger in preparation for more overload. Adapting. If a muscle is not allowed to fully recover between workouts muscle growth will be impeded, over-training will occur, and muscle breakdown will be inevitable. You will become stagnated. Muscle mass and strength will more than likely decrease. Energy levels will dwindle, appetite will lessen, and motivation will disappear.

    Recuperation


    As you can see, recovery between workouts is absolutely critical for muscle growth
    success as well as for optimal health and well being. This is why a major component of Max-OT training is to optimize recovery between workouts. Allowing 5 to 6 full days between training of the same muscle group is essential for full and complete recuperation. Recuperating fully leads to maximum muscle growth. Incomplete recuperation leads to muscle and strength breakdown. As I said earlier, most training programs have you training far too much. The days of training the same muscle group on Thursday that you trained on Monday are long gone. Max-OT takes the elements of intensity and overload and maximizes the recovery the implementation of these two growth promoting elements requires. Every element of Max-OT is designed to potentiate and synergistically work with the program as a whole. The longer recovery time is necessary to allow for full recovery from the higher than normal muscle fiber stimulation that Max-OT generates. Max-OT style training places much greater demands on muscle recovery. Greater muscle fiber stimulation and maximum recovery will lead to maximum muscle growth and strength increases. This is what Max-OT is all about.

    Take a 1 Week Break From Training Every 8 to 10 Weeks.
    Make no mistake about it. Max-OT is a brutal form of training. It's heavy. It's intense. It's result producing. It encompasses a total approach. It's not just the training part of the equation. It's the mental approach, the nutritional approach, the timing aspect, the exercise techniques all rolled into one. Understand that muscle growth and strength enhancement doesn't happen by accident. All in all, muscles beyond maturity do not want to grow. You must force a muscle to grow. It must be subjected to a stimulus that compels it to adapt and grow. There must be a reason for a muscle to grow or it won't. And, the more effectively you nurture this growth the greater the results you will experience. As I discussed earlier, recuperation is of vital importance to muscle growth. Recuperation will determine how well your muscles respond to Max-OT training. There are 4 important "time-spans" of recuperation:

    1. Short Term Recuperation (STR) - Between sets.
    2. Intermediate Term Recuperation (ITR) - Between workouts.
    3. Muscle Specific Recuperation (MSR) - Between identical workouts.
    4. Cyclical Recuperation (CR) - Between Max-OT Training cycles.

    Taking a week off from training every 8 to 10 weeks is very important for overall recuperation and muscle growth. Many people have a psychological barrier to taking time off from training. They feel like they are going to shrink. Not so. In fact, with Max-OT, after your week off for CR you will usually come back bigger and stronger. This week off allows your body to repair and grow. It is literally recovering from 8 or 10 straight weeks of heavy training. Fed properly, your body during this CR phase will be in a very high "anabolic" state. Muscle growth and repair will be constant 24 hours a day. One very important thing, well, actually two. Do not do any type of strenuous aerobic or anaerobic activity during this week. You don't have to be a slug, but refrain from any exhausting or physically taxing activities. This is a recuperation week that is a key element in Max-OT. Also, you should consume plenty of lean protein during this CR as well. When you take a week off from training you still need to eat and supplement properly for growth to occur. In fact, is vitally import during this phase.

    Get it here

    Skip La Cour's Max-OT Training Routines

  4. #38

    Thumbs up Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles Staley View Post
    Thanks for posting my article Sgt— I'd be happy to field question about EDT if anyone's interested...
    And thanks for posting a bit about HST and I'd be happy to field any questions about Charles Staley.

  5. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bryan Haycock View Post
    And thanks for posting a bit about HST and I'd be happy to field any questions about Charles Staley.
    Thanks for posting! This thread keep pulling out some great coaches.

  6. #40

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    I first read about Power Factor Training, by Sisco and Little, several years ago - the book was published in 1997 and is available on Amazon. While the concept has holes, which the following review explains, the idea of calculating changes in power between workouts is beneficial. IMO, don't restrict the range of motion to partial reps, but rather train through a full range while keeping the distance the load travels constant during each training day... to measure power output. For example... during a bench press, if you descend to one inch above your chest, then reverse and pump out a 12-inch ROM, do that at each workout... if your ROM starts to decay, then a high power index would not measure improvement. You have to keep distance constant... so the loads, reps, sets and time to completion can be used to measure power. Anyway - if you're not familiar with Power Factor Training, this review explains it:

    Power Factor Training
    Report by George Chen

    INTRODUCTION

    Power factor training is a resistance training system that claims to take the guess work out of training by effectively quantifying muscular intensity and the muscle-stimulating benefits of any workout. The developers claim that two indices, the power factor and power index, can be used by athletes to determine the selection of exercises, weights, sets, and reps that will produce maximum results for them (8). If these claims are true, the many existing styles of resistance training can be compared head-to-head in an objective manner. It can also lead to innovations in designing new training systems which may be even more effective than those existing.

    PHYSIOLOGY

    Power and work output are believed to be important parameters that can stimulate muscular hypertrophy. The developers of Power Factor training defined two parameters based on the mechanical definition of power to aid athletes in designing their workouts (8):

    Power factor (PF): A measurement of the intensity of muscular overload during an exercise

    PF = W / T

    W = Total amount weight lifted in lbs (from multiple reps)

    T = Total time in minutes

    Power index (PI): A measurement of the duration of a given power factor

    PI = (W^2) / T * 10^(-6)

    = W * PF * 10^(-6)

    Power Factor training is based on the concept of progressive overload. Athletes record these power indices for each workout and strive to increase these indices on subsequent workouts. For example, to increase their power factor, they can attempt to lift more total weight in the same period of time or the same amount of weight in a shorter period of time. To increase their power index, they need to sustain a given power factor for a longer period of time by possibly doing additional sets.

    From these power indices, the developers noted that certain types of training and exercises tend to produce higher power factors and indices for most trainers. These styles of training form the cornerstone of their system. Partial reps are recommended because they increase the number of reps that can be performed in a given period of time. Furthermore, these partials are performed in their strongest range of motion to allow the heaviest weights to be used. Compound exercises (exercises that involve multi-joint movements) are preferred over isolation exercises because more weight can be used. However, the developers encourage the athletes to experiment for themselves to fine tune the best plan for them since each person is different (8).

    Expectation: I don't expect Power Factor training to be effective because it over simplifies certain biomechanical factors both in the definition of the power indices and in their use in tailoring workouts for maximum effectiveness.

    EVALUATION

    Their definition of the power factor oversimplifies the definition of mechanical power by neglecting the distance the weight is lifted. Mechanical power is defined to be the force (F) exerted on an object multiplied by the distance (D) the object traveled divided by the time (T) of force application (5).

    Power = F * D / T

    By neglecting distance (D) in their definition of the power factor, the developers have overestimated the value of partial reps in their training scheme since the weight moves over a shorter distance per rep.

    Furthermore, their definition of the power factor only takes into account the forces exerted on the bar. Higher forces exerted on the bar does not automatically translate to higher muscular tension. Neglecting this fact, the developers have overestimated the value of compound exercises and strongest-range-of-motion exercises. By definition, compound exercises work multiple muscle groups simultaneously, so the power generated is derived from multiple muscles. Therefore, the external power generated in a compound exercise should not be compared to that generated in an isolation exercise in which the power is derived primarily from a single muscle group. For example, the power generated from a squatting exercise contains strong contributions from the vastus, gluteus, and hamstring muscles. One cannot reasonably compare the power generated from a squat to that generated from a leg extension, derived mainly from the vastus.

    The definition of the power factor also overestimates the value of strongest-range-of-motion exercises since muscular tension is often at a minimum in these ranges while most of the weight is supported by intersegmental joint loads. Therefore, more weight can be lifted in these ranges with the same or reduced muscular tension. For example, Power Factor training recommends athletes to perform partial reps in the final four inches of the squat movement near the lock out position. In this position, the legs are almost straight and relative less muscular force is needed to support any given amount of weight.

    Beyond the problematic definition of the power factor and its application is the rationale of the definition itself. The power factor is defined to be the total weight lifted divided by the total time of lifting over multiple sets -- including rest time between sets and time spent lowering the weight where negative work is performed. In the realm of resistance training where high-powered anearobic exercise is the goal, this definition of power is less meaningful than peak instantaneous power during the concentric phase or even sustained power during a single set, before recovery time becomes a factor. If their definition of power factor was valid as an indicator of training effectiveness, athletes should decrease their rest periods as much as possible without greatly affecting the power output during the set. However, in a study where two groups were trained for isokinetic strength, one with short (40 seconds) and one with long rest intervals (160 seconds), longer rest periods resulted in greater improvement in hamstring muscle strength (7). Without a doubt, the group resting only 40 seconds between sets generated a much higher power factor. However, training with shorter rest intervals was less effective probably because subjects fatigued on subsequent sets and were less capable of generating high instantaneous power.

    A rationale for maximizing instantaneous power during the concentric phase can be made from the force-velocity property of muscle. At close to maximum isometric force, very little power is generated since the muscle can barely produce the force necessary to maintain its length. Similarly, near the muscle's maximum shortening velocity, very little power is generated because the force exerted is minimal. Typically, maximum power is generated at an intermediate load and speed between a quarter and a third of their maximal values (4). Indeed, a training strategy of lifting relative light loads (approximately 30% of maximum) in a weighted squat jump at high speeds achieved the best overall enhancement in dynamic athletic performance when compared with plyometric and traditional weight training (9). However, traditional weight training with heavy loads (80-90% of maximum) still produced the largest isometric strength gains. It is not known which training modality would have produced greater muscular hypertrophy since the study was only five weeks long, a period in which most strength gains are probably due to neural factors (1). Nonetheless, the relatively light power-maximizing load (about 30% of maximum) found effective for enhancing dynamic athletic performance is considerably lighter than the loads recommended to maximize the power factor.

    However, one of the problems with attempting to maximize instantaneous power in traditional weight training exercises is that it cannot be achieved with a light weight without throwing the weight up in the air at the end of the motion. Note that the aforementioned study employed a squat jump as their maximum power stimulus. If the subjects attempted to use the same weight and were required to keep themselves on the ground, they could not have generated maximum power since they need to decelerate the bar to zero velocity at the end of each rep. For this reason, the weight that maximizes power during the concentric phases of most traditional weight training exercises is biased towards weights somewhat heavier than the theoretical 30% of maximum. There is evidence that maximizing the power generated during the concentric phase of a weight training exercise is an effective training stimulus even though the theoretical maximum power cannot be reached. Using a shoulder press exercise, it was determined that the weight which generated maximum power was somewhat higher than the theoretical 30% based on the force-velocity property of muscle. However, training with this weight at maximum speed still produced greater increases in strength and power output than with heavier weights at lower speeds (3).

    More evidence for the maximum-instantaneous-power stimulus is found in studies where the experimental variable was the speed of lifting while lifting load was maintained. In these studies, more power is clearly generated at higher speeds, and a greater training effect would be expected at higher speeds. Indeed, this has been found to be the case in two studies. In the first study, one group performed barbell squats using a 2 second up, 2 second down tempo, while another group performed squats using a 1 second up, 1 second down tempo. The fast training group demonstrated greater training effects when tested with vertical jumps, long jumps, maximum squats, and isometric and isokinetic knee extensions (6). In another study in which one group trained with knee extensions at 60 deg/s (slow) and another at 300 deg/s (fast), the slow training group improved peak torque only at the trained velocity while the fast training group improved at both velocities. Furthermore, only the fast training group demonstrated a significant enlargement of type II muscle fibers (2). These results suggest that the improvements in the slow group were primarily from neural factors while the improvements in the fast group can at least partially be attributed to muscular hypertrophy. These studies suggest that power output is an important training stimulus.

    The power index, which is given proportionally less attention in the Power Factor training system, appears to be the developers' attempt to reconcile the fact that power factors decrease as workout length is increased. If power factor was the only index in the system, athletes would conclude that they should be performing only one set of each exercise. Thus, the developers defined the power index to be the power factor multiplied by the total weight lifted divided by a million to keep the large number manageable. This index biases the athlete to train with more volume since it gives more emphasis to the total weight lifted. The system never discussed how exactly to find the optimal combination of power factor and power index, which is a major shortcoming since improvement in one tends to work against the other. Furthermore, the definition of the power index has no physiological or mechanical basis.

    CONCLUSION

    Power factor training is just another system which has touted itself to be the "key" to effective training. Because the developers use mathematical equations, they have fooled some trainers to believe that they are employing real science in evaluating their workouts. However, their definition of the power factor ignores the distance the weight moves, leading to a false rationale for partial-rep training. Furthermore, by only taking into account the weight on the bar and not muscular tension, the system produced a false rationale for the superiority of compound and strongest-range-of-motion exercises. This is not to say that these types of training have no value in a weight training program since there may be other reasons for employing them. The important thing is that the power factor cannot be used as claimed -- as an objective way of determining the muscle stimulating benefits of any workout. Beyond the mechanical oversimplification in their definition of the power factor, is the problematic definition itself. All the literature suggest that instantaneous power during the concentric phase of an exercise is an important training stimulus, not the average power generated over a workout.

    REFERENCES

    1. Brooks, G. A., T. D. Fahey, T. P. White. Muscle strength, power, and flexibility. In: Exercise Physiology: Human Bioenergetics and Its Applications, Second

    Edition. Mountain View: Mayfield Publishing Company, 1996.

    2. Coyle, E. F., D. C. Feiring, T. C. Rotkis. Specificity of power improvements through slow and fast isokinetic training. Journal of Applied Physiology. 51: 1437-42, 1981.

    3. Mastropaulo, J. A. A test of the maximum-power stimulus theory for strength. European Journal of Applied Physiology. 65: 415-420, 1992.

    4. McMahon, T. A. Muscles, Reflexes, and Locomotion. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1984.

    5. Meriam, J. L., L. G. Kraige. Engineering Mechanics (Volume Two): Dynamics, Third Edition. New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1992.

    6. Morrissey, M. C., E. A. Harman, P. N. Frykman. Early phase differential effects of slow and fast barbell squat training. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 26: 221-30, 1998.

    7. Pincivero, D. M., S. M. Lephart, R. G. Karunakara. Effects of rest interval on isokinetic strength and functional performance after short-term high intensity training. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 31: 229-34, 1997.

    8. Sisco, P., J. Little. Power Factor Training. Chicago: Contemporary Books, 1997.

    9. Wilson, G. J., R. U. Newton, A. J. Murphy. The optimal training load for the development of dynamic athletic performance. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 25: 1279-86, 1993.

    Email: gchen@stanford.edu
    Homepage: http://www.stanford.edu/~gchen/

  7. #41

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    Another by Sisco... I've found some muscle groups do better with this than others. I think the muscles rate of fatigue plays a big role in the gains obtained through static contraction training. The book by Sisco and Little is a good read - with a nice explanation of the physiological changes during training.

    Static Contraction Training
    By Pete Sisco

    Bear with me for just a second while I say something mathematical: In exercise, intensity is inversely proportional to duration. Simply stated, the greater your effort, the less time you can sustain it.

    That's why a 100-meter sprinter can run faster than a marathoner. The tradeoff is the sprinter can only run all out for ten seconds but the marathoner can keep running for two hours.

    Now take a look at their legs. The sprinter has the thick, powerful leg muscles and the marathoner has much thinner legs. And the sprinter builds those massive muscles using a "dose" of exercise that is ten seconds or less. Isn't that interesting?

    So if you're in the gym trying to develop thick, powerful arms or a thick, powerful chest why are you grinding away for hours? Why not try to discover the minimum dose of exercise that will deliver the highest possible intensity?

    Experiments to Discover Maximum Intensity

    After the success of Power Factor Training in 1993, we realized that limiting the range of motion in an exercise was an effective way to increase intensity. Basically, a subject could gain more muscle lifting 200 pounds a few inches than he could by lifting 100 pounds through his full range of motion.

    Once we knew full range of motion was not very important in stimulating muscle growth, we created a study to see what would happen if bodybuilders used zero range of motion but with the heaviest weights they could possibly hold. We recruited some hardcore bodybuilders who had already developed impressive physiques…so it would be extra challenging to put new muscle on these subjects compared to average subjects. We put them on a routine averaging just 2.1 workouts per week where subjects statically held heavy weights (without any up and down movement) in their strongest range but without being "locked out".

    After just 10 weeks of Static Contraction Training, these subjects:
    • Increased static strength 51.3%
    • Increased their full range 1-rep max 27.6%
    • Increased their full range 10-rep max 34.3%
    • Added 9.0 pounds of new muscle (one subject added 28.9 pounds!)
    • Lost 4.9 pounds of fat
    • Added ½ inch to their biceps
    • Added 1.1 inches to their chest


    When was the last time you made gains like that in 10 weeks?

    Since the above study, we have conducted more studies using various refinements that have proven the benefits of reduced hold times and a corresponding increase in intensity. For example, the above results were achieved using hold times of 15 to 30 seconds but now we know hold times of less than half that duration work even better. (See the TRAIN SMART! e-book.)

    This form of minimum dose, maximum intensity training has been widely hailed as revolutionary. Ironman Magazine said Static Contraction Training "could cause physiology books to be rewritten." And world renowned human performance coach Tony Robbins says it's, "The cutting edge in bodybuilding [and] strength training that can show you - no matter what age you are - how you can produce the greatest result you ever thought possible in the shortest time."

    Try It Yourself

    Try these two simple exercises. You'll be amazed at how strong you really are. Perform each of these exercises exactly as described. Do both of them the same day then repeat them five days later. After three sessions you'll feel the astounding effects that this level of muscle stimulation triggers.

    Bench Press: This exercise is performed inside a Power Rack, as pictured. Position the bar within two inches of your extended reach. Place 30-100% more weight on the bar than you normally use. Press the bar up one inch (do not lock-out) and hold for a count of 7 seconds. Experiment to find the most weight you can hold for 7 seconds. Repeat five days later with 10-30% more weight and again five days after that with another 10-30% more weight.

    Leg Press: This exercise is performed with the safety stops engaged at ALL TIMES. Position the seat so the sled is within 2 inches of your full extension. Place 100-200% more weight on the press than you normally use. Press the sled up one inch off the safety stops. Hold for a count of 7 seconds. Experiment to find the most weight you can hold for 7 seconds. Repeat five days later with 20-50% more weight and again five days after that with another 20-50% more weight.

    Push yourself to the limits of your capability. Most people using this method make the mistake of estimating the weight they can lift far too low. When you repeat these exercise expect very significant increases in weight.

    The Ultimate in Muscle Growth Stimulation

    Static Contraction Training capitalizes on the undisputed fact that the intensity of muscular output is more important than the duration of output when it comes to stimulating new muscle growth. It provides the "minimum dose" of ultra high intensity exercise. It's already working for thousands of guys…try it yourself and see. Learn more about this topic.

    Train Smart.

  8. #42
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    Thanks for these Warrior! Much appreciated!

  9. #43

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    Just one quick question

    Is the static hold only preformed for 1 set lasting 7 seconds and that's it ??

    Thanks for your time and effort Warrior

  10. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by switchfoot View Post
    Just one quick question

    Is the static hold only preformed for 1 set lasting 7 seconds and that's it ??

    Thanks for your time and effort Warrior
    In theory, that's all you would need. Once you reach true static failure, where you cannot even stop the weight from dropping down on you, you're finished - and to attempt another set is only over training. Absolute muscle failure happens in the eccentric phase (not only can you not hold it steady but you can't resist it from falling either), but eccentric failure happens soon after static.

    In practice, the necessary time under tension is likely to vary between muscle groups - due to differing rates of fatigue - for instance, I would suggest flirting with around 20 seconds when training delts and quads; while stuff like chest, triceps, hamstrings are likely to do well with 7- to 10-second sets.

  11. #45

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    warrior.. a million thank yous for providing this information.

  12. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Epifiny View Post
    warrior.. a million thank yous for providing this information.
    No problem - lots of good ideas out there... and even if a theory doesn't pan out right, you always learn a little more about yourself. So it's never a lost. Repeatedly doing the same thing is worst than trying something new and deciding it isn't for you.

  13. #47
    Behemoth ForX's Avatar
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    Warrior, have you heard of omni reps, i believe it's another from poliquin , read something on it a while ago and now can't seem to find it again...thanks

  14. #48

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    I started Needsize's 5x5 routine today starting with chest and calves. I've been training seriously for about 8 months so I'm still pretty new to all of this. I had a question pertaining to the supersetting.

    When I did the workout today I did the 5x5 of the flat bench straight through with about a 1.5-2min rest in between sets, and then supersetted the incline dumbbell press and chest flys with about a min of rest in between. Is this kind of what he means by supersetting? I workout at a small gym and don't want to be the guy that ties up numerous pieces of equipment. If someone could clarify how to superset with his routine it would be greatly appreciated, cause I'm a little unclear. Thanks

  15. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by fortysixandtwo View Post
    I started Needsize's 5x5 routine today starting with chest and calves. I've been training seriously for about 8 months so I'm still pretty new to all of this. I had a question pertaining to the supersetting.

    When I did the workout today I did the 5x5 of the flat bench straight through with about a 1.5-2min rest in between sets, and then supersetted the incline dumbbell press and chest flys with about a min of rest in between. Is this kind of what he means by supersetting? I workout at a small gym and don't want to be the guy that ties up numerous pieces of equipment. If someone could clarify how to superset with his routine it would be greatly appreciated, cause I'm a little unclear. Thanks
    Honestly, since you've only been training consistently for about 8 months, I would suggest you do the Poliquin German Volume Training system first... then, after progression with that stalls, rest a week, then move on to the 5X5 split. The extra volume now will pay greater dividends toward increased intensity later.

    Supersets are two exercises that are performed without rest - giantsets are three or more. They are sometimes written this way in program designs:
    A-1: Exercise 1
    A-2: Exercise 2

    B-1: Exercise 3
    B-2: Exercise 4

    Where A and B are two different supersets.
    To superset two exercises: you would fatigue on one, then immediately pick up with the following movement - train it to failure, drop the weight and terminate the set. Rest. That's one set - a superset. Often, supersets aren't repeated more than once or twice - more often than that is analogous to kicking a dead horse.

  16. #50

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    Thanks Warrior for your input and for the routines you've posted. I'll read through the German Volume training routine and give it a go. Time to hit the weights

  17. #51

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    Awesome posts warrior. Some great info. Any tips for diet plans for the Lactic Acid Training programs??

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