Here’s how isometric exercises can help you build strength
By Edith Hatfield | Published on Oct 11, 2023
In recent years, the importance of fitness has captured the attention of people worldwide. Fitness experts emphasize the need for a well-rounded workout routine that includes both cardio and strength training exercises. When it comes to building strength, many believe that lifting heavy weights is necessary. However, we’re here to introduce you to a game-changer in the fitness world – isometric exercises.
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Isometric exercises are a specific type of exercise that challenges your muscles differently than traditional exercises. Contrary to what you might think, these exercises don’t require you to perform a range of motions. But don’t be fooled, they are still challenging and will definitely make your muscles burn!
Let’s dive into the world of isometric exercises and explore how they can help you build strength.
What Exactly Are Isometric Exercises?
Isometric exercises involve contracting a single muscle or group of muscles. With these exercises, you hold a specific position for the duration of the exercise, rather than performing concentric or eccentric movements.
Take the plank exercise, for example. When you hold a plank, you engage your core muscles for the entire duration of the exercise. This type of muscle contraction is known as an isometric contraction.
Another example of an isometric exercise is the squat. As you lower your body, your muscles lengthen, entering the eccentric phase. When you push back up, your muscles contract, representing the concentric phase. However, if you pause and hold the squat at the bottom, you enter the isometric phase.
Isometric exercises also include wall sits, calf raises, and body holds. Additionally, you can incorporate an isometric component into non-isometric exercises by holding a specific spot.
The Benefits of Isometric Exercises
Isometric exercises offer a unique way to build strength. Unlike traditional strength training exercises that cause microscopic tears in your muscles, isometric workouts focus on training your nervous system.
By engaging in isometric exercises, you train your nervous system to coordinate with your muscles in a specific position, activating the right areas. This coordination leads to improved performance without significant changes to muscle architecture. Additionally, isometric exercises enhance muscle endurance, which is a significant advantage.
Making Isometric Exercises a Part of Your Routine
To maximize their benefits, it’s essential to incorporate isometric exercises into your regular workout routine. Including isometrics helps maintain muscle strength and supports concentric and eccentric movements, reducing the risk of injuries.
One way to include isometric exercises is by integrating them into traditional exercises. Perform a slow and controlled movement and pay attention to the point where you feel the weakest. Hold that position to strengthen your muscles at their weakest point.
Another approach is to add isometric exercises as a supplement to your upper body or core workouts. For example, begin and end your workout with a plank. This simple addition can make a substantial difference in building muscle strength.
If you’re looking to build strength without lifting heavy weights, isometric exercises are the answer you’ve been searching for.
So, incorporate these exercises into your routine and witness the incredible results firsthand. Say goodbye to the belief that strength training requires lifting heavy weights and embrace the power of isometric exercises!