Eccentrics and DOMS

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Kenny Croxdale
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Eccentrics and DOMS

Post by Kenny Croxdale » Sun Sep 21, 2008 9:58 am

I wanted to add some information about DOMS after reading the post of "A Question about DOMS."

Eccentric training and DOMS are associated together, rightfully and wrongfully. Stu's article provide some good information that needs to be expounded upon.

Two key points from the article that apply to eccentrics, as well as other movments are:

1) "The less accustomed you are to that type of exercise, the worse the DOMS will be after the fact."

2) "The actual tissue damage you do in a workout..." causes DOMS.

As per the article, "Usually the recommendation is given for 120% to 130% of your 1RM."

As an example, if you can push up 300 lbs in a bench press, you should be able to perform an eccentric with 360 lbs to 390 lbs. I question the capacity of an individual to use those percentages/training loads in training.

However, let's assume those precentages/loads are correct. So, in performing a traditional bench press in which you lower and then push the weight back up, you are working with sub maximal eccentric load.

A load less than 360 to 390 lbs would be considered below your eccentric much you can lower.

Thus, a lifter who can bench press 300 X 1 would be utilizing approximately 77-83% of their eccentric strength (300 divided by 360 = 83% and 300 divide by 390 = 77%).

If one were to perform a maximum eccentric bench press with 360-390 lbs, a great deal more trama/damaged is caused to the muscles/connective tissue involved.

This trama is reflected in become sore.

The key to eliminating DOMS from an eccentric action is:

1) Start out with a sub max eccentric load (lower than 300 lbs in the bench press example) and work you way up beyond 300 lbs in the movement.

Number 2 comes from Stu's article, "The less accustomed you are to that type of exercise, the worse the DOMS will be after the fact.'

That means as you progress from sub max loads (an eccentric bench press with less than 300 lbs) to a "Supramaximal" bench press (eccentrics with over 300 lbs), you body will become "accustomed" to the movement...NO DOMS or very little will occur.

Progressing from a sub max (less than 300 lb eccentric) to a "Supramaximal" load (more than 300 lbs eccentric) need to take place over a few workout...NOT the first workout!

In using eccentrics for the for the last 10 years, I have found this to be true. Very little if any soreness will occur if you follow the above information.

Warren Frost research back this up. "Eccentric Movements: Description, definition and designing programmes." ... aining.pdf

The benefits of eccentric strength training are enormous, since half of just about ever movement we perform involves an eccentric action.

As Jay Schroeder (strength coach) once stated, "You need to be able to absorb force before you can repel it." That means the faster you can stop, the faster you can move forward.

Another excellent article on this is David Kerin's "What is the most effective means of to achieve strength gains specific to the demand of jumping events?"

The research in this article demonstrates that the best high jumper are those with the greatest eccentric strength.

In the high jump, these athletes are able to transition much faster and explosively from moving horizonally (running) to going vertical (jumping up) than other jumpes.

In effect, great jumpers as well as runners "skip across the ground" much like when you skip a rock across the water.

The Russians considered eccentric training to be a vital part of an athletes training. Approximatley 10% of their training revolved included eccentric only movments. (Dr Michael Yessis/Secrets of Soviet Sports Fitness and Training).

Jay Schroeder's training method revolve around the Soviet training philosophy. Schroeder has referred to eccentric training as the "foundation of his program." (Freak of Training Video/DVD-Schroeder).

Kenny Croxdale

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Post by stuward » Fri Oct 10, 2008 3:01 pm

I just wanted to bump this as I'm not sure many people saw it. It probably should be in "Exercise Science".

I use eccentrics for calf training once in a while. I can do reps with 600# which is the limit of the machine at my gym. By raising 400# with 2 legs and lowering with 1 leg, I can overload the calves much better than just with concentrics.

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Post by pdellorto » Fri Oct 10, 2008 3:11 pm

Maybe it could be stickied in Exercise Science or moved to "Worth Keeping?"

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Post by Blue Running Man » Fri Oct 10, 2008 4:33 pm

I've read that after an individual is through the learning phase of an exercise, and has made gains to the point where they would no longer be considered a beginner. The limiting factor of strength isn't the muscle. It's the tendon.

Your muscles grow in strength much quicker than your tendons do. Your nervous system will then limit the power out put of the muscle, so that you don't damage the tendon (makes sense). As the tendons get stronger(catches up), the nervous system will then fire more aggressively. Allowing for more gains.

Training with eccentrics is a good way to put more stress on the tendons than training concentrically. Therefore allowing your tendons to grow stronger, faster. Which in turn results in stronger muscles.

-Your thoughts??

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