Muscle Contractions 101…
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Muscle contractions 101… let’s talk squeezes and stretches.
💪🏾3 types of muscle contractions allow athletes to apply force in sports; concentric, eccentric and isometric actions.
Concentric and eccentric actions are dynamic muscle actions, where isometric actions are static. Knowing how these Actions occur in sport movements tells you the type of training activities that will simulate those specific movements.
☝🏾Concentric action occurs when a muscles force is greater than the resistance, so the muscle SHORTENS such as in the upward phase of a leg curl. Concentric muscle contractions are essential for overcoming the force of gravity and performing lifting movements.
👉🏾Eccentric Action occurs when the force generated by the muscle is less than the resistance, so the muscle actively lengthens. Eccentric actions are often used when muscles have to slow down body parts, control movements or oppose external resistances. The downward phase of a bicep curl, for example, requires an eccentric action to control the downward force over a controlled speed; as a result the muscle is lengthened.
☝🏾And an Isometric action is a static hold. No movement is required but the muscle is forced to hold the weight. There is no change in muscle length, however the muscle is still known to contract. Isometric muscle contractions are essential for matching the force of gravity. During isometric contraction the contractile part of the muscle shortens, but the elastic connective tissue lengthens accordingly. These movements are predominantly used for stabilising or preventing undesired body segment movement.
📚Understanding your contractions within the exercises allocated to you helps you to build that mind/muscle connection thus improving muscle efficiency and quality. For more information or to discuss a customised workout plan you can follow in an easy to use app, get in touch today.
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