Slower reps

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leif3141
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Slower reps

Post by leif3141 » Fri May 11, 2007 11:13 pm

Very recently, my sister got me a book from the library. It is called The Home Workout Bible, I think it is made by Men's Fitness (I don't have it right here in front of me). I thought it was a fairly decent read (I don't know if anyone else has had a chance to check it out.) It has a whole section for bodyweight exercises, a whole section for dumbel, barbell, cable, and others (much like this website, though I think it has a couple of exercises not listed on here, and vice-versa). Anyhow, I got to a section of the book where it was talking about if you do not have enough weight to fulfill your strength requirements for something (say you have worked past the amount of weight you own) and do not have the money to go out and buy new weights, to just try and slow your reps down. Instead of throwing shoulder presses up once every second or slow, to decrease the speed down and up for the rep, and that way it would still work your muscles just as hard. The funny thing is, I had never thought of this before I read it in this book. I guess my question is does this work? It seems to me you might just be building endurance as opposed to muscle (which is what I am trying to do). It's not that I do not have enough weight, it's just for exercises like DB bench press, it's nearly impossible for me to get enough weight above me to make 10 reps incredibly challenging. I know its dumb, but I cannot get two 70 dumbells above me to even start benching them, so I am stuck at 65 and it is relatively easy for me to bench 65 DB's 10 times. So...do you think I could still build muscle if I just slowed down my 65 reps, and then try 70 in a couple of weeks when maybe I am strong enough to get that above me? Basically I guess I am asking do slower reps still build muscle as good as quicker reps with more weight...!


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Post by Ironman » Sat May 12, 2007 12:45 am

Well slow does increase time under tension. Which load and time under tension are the main factors. More sets and less rest are another way to do it.

However if you can't get heavier dumbbells up. I wonder if you don't go low enough and ended up getting all your strength in your front delts and tris and not much in your chest. Compare how many reps you get with 65's on bench to how many you get with 65's on overhead press.

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Post by Dave X » Sat May 12, 2007 1:40 am

I've actually been studying this myself a bit. I forget who put out the video, but I saw it explained best in this analogy :

Take a pen and put it on your desk. Move it pretty slowly with your finger, and then take your hand away. The pen should stop moving.

Then, do it again, only this time, move fast, then take your hand away. The pen should have enough momentum to keep moving. A similar principle applies with weights. If someone moves the weights fast enough, they're not really doing as much work as they should. If you move slow - in both directions - you keep your muscles under tension for a considerably longer amount of time than what most people do. Moving slower also allows for better form, which is arguably more important than the amount of weight you're using anyway.

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Stephen Johnson
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Re: Slower reps

Post by Stephen Johnson » Sat May 12, 2007 8:37 am

leif3141 wrote: it's nearly impossible for me to get enough weight above me to make 10 reps incredibly challenging. I know its dumb, but I cannot get two 70 dumbells above me to even start benching them, so I am stuck at 65 and it is relatively easy for me to bench 65 DB's 10 times. !
What technique do you use to position yourself before you exercise? Exrx recommends this method for the DB bench press.

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Re: Slower reps

Post by Kenny Croxdale » Sat May 12, 2007 9:16 am

leif3141 wrote:Very recently, my sister got me a book from the library. It is called The Home Workout Bible, I think it is made by Men's Fitness (I don't have it right here in front of me). I thought it was a fairly decent read (I don't know if anyone else has had a chance to check it out.) It has a whole section for bodyweight exercises, a whole section for dumbel, barbell, cable, and others (much like this website, though I think it has a couple of exercises not listed on here, and vice-versa). Anyhow, I got to a section of the book where it was talking about if you do not have enough weight to fulfill your strength requirements for something (say you have worked past the amount of weight you own) and do not have the money to go out and buy new weights, to just try and slow your reps down. Instead of throwing shoulder presses up once every second or slow, to decrease the speed down and up for the rep, and that way it would still work your muscles just as hard. The funny thing is, I had never thought of this before I read it in this book. I guess my question is does this work? It seems to me you might just be building endurance as opposed to muscle (which is what I am trying to do). It's not that I do not have enough weight, it's just for exercises like DB bench press, it's nearly impossible for me to get enough weight above me to make 10 reps incredibly challenging. I know its dumb, but I cannot get two 70 dumbells above me to even start benching them, so I am stuck at 65 and it is relatively easy for me to bench 65 DB's 10 times. So...do you think I could still build muscle if I just slowed down my 65 reps, and then try 70 in a couple of weeks when maybe I am strong enough to get that above me? Basically I guess I am asking do slower reps still build muscle as good as quicker reps with more weight...!
This "Super Slow" method will works if you don't have enough weight.

One way of solving the problem of not being able to get the dumbbells up are these Power Hooks. http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/cp/ph.html

Kenny Croxdale


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Re: Slower reps

Post by leif3141 » Sat May 12, 2007 3:52 pm

What technique do you use to position yourself before you exercise? Exrx recommends this method for the DB bench press.[/quote]

That technique looks like it would work except I use adjustable, not fixed dumbells. It would be nearly impossible with them because they have like the same ends as an olympic barbell...and the weight is not on the end of them. I guess it could still possibly work, but it would be very awkward.


To Kenny...do you know if it works just as good? I guess keep in mind right now I am looking to build muscle, not necessarily strength (although the two go hand and hand obviously...right now I am focusing more on muscle).

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Post by leif3141 » Sat May 12, 2007 4:10 pm

One more thing...the book suggested what I thought was an interesting way to tackle my workout. It has a push/pull workout, but focuses on upper body as horizontal push/pull (Benching and rowing) and vertical push/pull (shoulder presses, pullups). For legs it has hip dominant (deadlift, step-ups) and knee dominant (front squat, lunges) days. So I am taking its advice and here's what my workout looks like

Day one- Hip Dominant

Deadlift (4 sets)
Step-ups
Calf Raises

Day two- upper body horizontal push/pull

DB Benching
DB Rowing (or BB Rowing possibly)
DB Incline Benching
Some other back exercise, probably pullovers
Tricep Extenstions
Curls

Day three- Knee Dominant

Front Squats
Straight legged Deadlifts (I know these aren't knee dominant, but I don't want to do them the same day as Deadlifts)
Lunges
Calf Raises

Day four- Vertical Push/Pull

Weighted Dips (Chest)
Weighted Pullups
DB Shoulder Presses
DB Upright Rows
Weighted Bench Dips (Triceps)
Close-grip Chinup (Biceps)

I know it might look like I am overloading on upper body, but I don't do as many sets per exercises for upper body as I do lower body. Cardio and Ab exercises are also mixed in there, but I feel those are not important enough to specify certain days for them (and yes I do both of them at least twice a week). My only concern I guess is not enough shoulder work.

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Post by Ironman » Sat May 12, 2007 9:39 pm

I always considered incline bench as verticle and shoulder press as just a secondary exercise.

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Re: Slower reps

Post by Kenny Croxdale » Sun May 13, 2007 8:45 am

To Kenny...do you know if it works just as good? I guess keep in mind right now I am looking to build muscle, not necessarily strength (although the two go hand and hand obviously...right now I am focusing more on muscle).
The Power Hooks work well.

Kenny

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Post by Stephen Johnson » Sun May 13, 2007 10:13 am

leif3141 wrote:One more thing...the book suggested what I thought was an interesting way to tackle my workout. It has a push/pull workout, but focuses on upper body as horizontal push/pull (Benching and rowing) and vertical push/pull (shoulder presses, pullups). For legs it has hip dominant (deadlift, step-ups) and knee dominant (front squat, lunges) days..
Interesting split.

Compound lower body exercises use both hip extension and knee extension, but by favoring one each workout you're in effect doing two heavy/light workouts. Let us know how it works out.

A question about super slow training, though. Ken Hutchings gained popularity with it using Nautilus equipment in the 1980s, but it quickly faded. Has anyone here used it? A personal trainer once told me that super slow exercising was good for rehab, but was useless for sports performance

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Post by TimD » Sun May 13, 2007 10:52 am

Stephen, I've never used SuperSlow exclusivly, however, I have done a few routines by Ian King and Charles Poliquin, and in some of their early phases (accumulation they term it) they stress tempo's of a slow nature, such as 5-0-5, to add TUL or TUT as Ironman was describing earlier. It definately gives a far different effect than doing the exercise ballistically. Much less weight can be use. I guess that for a given limited period of time it can be very useful. Also, interestingly enough, both King and Poliquin use splits such as Leif was recommending, Vertical planePush/pull, lower quad dominant, horizontal push/pull lower hip ham dominant.
On another note, and Kenny might find this interesting, I was reading a program from hammer thrower Judd Logan over on the Sorinex site under training tips, where he described an 8 phase program that Poliquin put him on to increase his ower clean. Very interesting, The first phase lower/pulling portion was sn grip Dls, and front squats done either 8-0-8 or 5-0-5 (can't remember-can't get into the site anymore-it requires Adabe flash), which is pretty much a super slow protocol.
So, yes, it does have it's applications. I wouldn't use it exclusively however.
Tim

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Post by Stephen Johnson » Sun May 13, 2007 12:30 pm

TimD

Thanks for the info. The SuperSlow training advocated by Hutchings used a 10-0-10 count, but that's close to the 8-0-8 Poliquin used for Judd Logan. I've done snatch grip deadlifts fast, but keeping your form tight must be a real challenge at 8-0-8.

Politquin has a good rep among trainers, so there's probable benefit there

You learn all kinds of good stuff at this site. Thanks again.

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Post by leif3141 » Sun May 13, 2007 1:36 pm

Ironman wrote:I always considered incline bench as verticle and shoulder press as just a secondary exercise.
I don't know exactly which incline bench is...but its the only other chest exercise I wanna do, cause i HATE flyes. Just out of curiousity...what's your main shoulder exercise?

I just tried the slower reps with deadlifts this morning. Nromally I do about 215 10 times, but today I did around 185 10 times slower. It seemed to be just as good as the higher weight, if not better. Of course, I could do 135 about 25 times, and it might also seem just as good...but we all know its not (at least for muscle-building purposes). I will say this- somtimes on Deadlifts I tend to waiver at the end on my form, and when doing a little less weight slower I did not seem to. Maybe I'll try it for a couple more weeks on the really basic lifts like DL and Benches, see if it works out on those, than switch all lifts if it does.

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Post by TimD » Sun May 13, 2007 1:54 pm

Just a word of caution guys. I didn't make it clear. The front squats were done with the slow count. The sn grip deads were done a a faster but controlled pace, probably 4-0-2 with emphasis on the 4 count decent, and alsonote, the reps were at 5 for both exerises if memory serves.. I couldn't imagine trying a 10-0-10 DL w/ 10 reps.
Tim

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Post by Ironman » Sun May 13, 2007 4:35 pm

My main shoulder exercise is lateral raises because the lateral head doesn't get hit well with other exercises. That and upright rows hurt.
I also do shrugs for upper traps.
I just do 1 set of overhead press because front delts get worked with chest. I prefer it over front raise because it gets triceps and the lateral head just a little bit.
I do 1 set of rear delt rows because they get worked pretty good with back.

I don't like fyls either. The only time I use them is to superset with bench. That might be another idea for you. Prefatigue with a set of flys then go right into dumbbell bench press. That will make those 65's challenging.


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