Last Updated on 25 May 2020 by Ray Plumlee
What do you know about Isometric exercises? To understand about this concept, you should learn how your muscles contract. Your muscle can contract in several ways. When shortening, it’s called aconcentric contraction. The muscle can also tense when lowering the weight. In this condition, it’s called eccentric contraction. This type of contraction occurs when your muscle tenses lengthening. The final contraction type is known as isometric contraction. This condition occurs when your muscle tenses without changing the length. For examples, you train this muscle by pushing against a wall. Body builders also use this type of exercise.
One of the major advantages of Isometric exercises is that the body can stimulate almost all motor units. In fact, it’s something that’s usually very hard to do. This exercise is a kind of strength training in which the muscle length won’t change when the muscle is contracted. Unlike regular strength training, it’s done in a fixed position instead of moving through diverse motions. It means you can practice this type of exercises anytime and anywhere without any special equipment. Mostly, experts recommend that it takes only seconds to perform this exercise effectively. Your muscle can be trained by using this kind of resistance.
History of Isometric Training and Exercises
There is a history of Isometric exercises. It’s well known as static strength exercise. In the past, this type of training became the secret of chivalry medieval orders’ physical training methods. The most efficient system was the Knight Templar’s. This type of system gave them the brute strength without spending too much energy. Nowadays, it’s popular among body builders as well. The system has common history with Indian yogi’s training. It’s said that this common history can be the geometric training. There’s also DR. Anokhin’s system that became very popular in the early 20th century. This system became well known as “the best indoor training”.
There have been many athletes who use Isometric exercises in their training. To perform this kind of exercise, you don’t need troublesome equipment and particular premises. Anokhin has the belief that there’s only one move. The Anokhin’s system is called the Volitional Training. Its principle is to perform training without any load. You don’t need expanders, dumbbells, and other equipment. In fact, this type of system is still applicable nowadays. This not only increases the strength, but also to achieve the ability to relax and tense different muscle groups, which is quite beneficial in any physical activity.
How Can We Perform Isometric Exercises?
There was a successful story of a person who applied Isometric exercises. He was Alexander Zass, an athlete from Russia. He applied this kind of exercise in his training. As a result, he developed great physical and tendon strength. He described his exercises system to the public. The real purpose of this exercise is to build up muscles without changing their length. There’s no visible motion at the joints as well. This exercise also gave sensation to the world of sports. There have been many sportsmen who have included this training in their workouts. In the end, they were able to improve their strength rapidly.
So, who can we perform Isometric exercises? It can be done by anyone. Importantly, these types of exercises should become more efficient than regular workouts or other sport systems. There will be limitless options for training your muscles in this method. Here are some exercises that you can focus on: palm press, core engagement, neck strengthener, and many more. Basically, you should choose the one that might suit your routines. However, you can do this type of exercise in the middle of other activities.
Effectiveness of Isometric Exercises
There’s a part that makes Isometric exercises so much more effective. It requires a thorough muscle exertion. Your muscle will be given maximum training effort. The major secret of isometric exercise efficacy is the strengthening. These exercises are considered as effective as other methods if the major goal isn’t the maximum strength. In definition, isometrics don’t require any movement at all. It will be ideal for rehabilitation processes. Moreover, you shouldn’t move any single joint at all during the training.
Basically, there are 2 major methods of exercising using isometrics. They are maximum muscle movement, and semi maximum muscle movement. Both of them are beneficial for you.
The maximal movements of Isometric exercises would use immovable objects such as wall and door frame. It’s the best choice to build up strength and conditioning. While the sub-maximal mobility would include movable objects such as elastic bands and free weights. These are usually used more for medical purpose such as rehabilitation. It’s because the exertion level isn’t so great. So, are there any downsides or drawbacks? There’s something you should really pay attention to. You should combine this exercise with other strength training methods. Also, you should avoid this type of exercise if you have health problems.
Examples of Isometric Exercises
If you are going to do Isometric exercises, you shouldn’t involve any joint movement at all. The aim is to strengthen the muscles. Isometrics are ideal to increase both endurance and resistance. Though, some body builders consider this training is only for professionals. On the other hand, you can perform it without visiting a gym or buying expensive equipment.
There are some examples of isometrics such as Plank Bridge, push up, and bicep exercise. Plank Bridge is the most common of Isometric exercises. You need only to lie down on the ground. Place your elbows below the chest. The rest of your body would be on the floor. In this position, the entire weight will be focused on your forearms. Push up is also efficient way to train your muscle strength. However, you should perform it regularly. Another popular training is the bicep exercise. It’s the simplest among all. Moreover, it can be easily conducted anywhere, even at your office. In summary, you can learn more about this from experts at a gym. The help from a personal trainer is recommended as well.