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Scene FitnessBY TROY HUGGETT, M.S. & ANDREW MARTINOur world gen- erally functions on a principle of ‘more is better’ and in the exercise world this is demonstrated by the ‘Overload Prin- ciple,’ which ba- sically states “inorder to get stronger, one must continu- ally increase workload.” In other words, progress only comes from pushing your- self.Understanding this principle, many will go to the gym, pile on the weights and/or do more sets/reps. With an ex- plosive thrust, they push the bar up or yank the cables down. Their faces turn red, they arch their back and swing the load into the up position and then let the weight go crashing down. While this may look impressive, our unexperienced lifter is actually wasting a lot of time, in- creasing risk of injury and missing out on at least half of the workout.The problem is that more weight or even more reps doesn’t always mean a better workout. Muscles are not strengthened by the number of reps per- formed but rather by the time that the fibers spend under tension. In our ex- ample, the weight training enthusiast is lifting a significant amount. In other cas- es, they might be looking to accomplish an impressive number of repetitions butLess is More!the time spent under tension is reduced to that minimal upward thrust that may only last a split second. In order to max- imize the benefit from exercise one must seek to extend the time spent under ten- sion for the target muscle group of each repetition of each lift rather than focus- ing on doing more reps.Almost every weight lifting exercise is made up of two parts; the concen- tric phase and the eccentric phase. The concentric phase is the phase everyone thinks about when lifting. It’s the up movement of a push up or curl; it’s the part of the exercise where the lifter en- gages in a fight with gravity determined to win. The concentric contraction is fol- lowed by two common mistakes. First, people rest at the end of the contraction, allowing heart rate to drop and cardio- vascular benefits to lessen. Secondly, they relax the muscles as gravity re- turns the weight to the starting position.However, if done properly this return to rest should be a valuable part of the exer- cise called the eccentric phase.In order to get the most benefit, your goal should be to maintain constant ten- sion on the muscle during the entire rep/ set. That means in order to see the most benefit you need to resist the weight even as you return to the rest position. One should strive to flow seamlessly from eccentric to concentric motion. In other words the lift should be a constant struggle with gravity; winning the battle on the up lift, and slowly losing it on the way back down. While the amount of force you apply to the weight will vary between the two phases there should be a considerable force applied throughout the entire set.This isn’t to say that explosive con- centric centered exercise will not pro- duce results, but you will find yourself needing to put in a lot more time for the same gains. Meanwhile you are tak- ing on the risk of injuring yourself by adopting incorrect form as a means of powering through your workout. In a day when a lack of time is the number one reason cited for not exercising as much as we’d like, effective training is more important than ever. So if you’re looking for the best results in the least amount of time, the answer is clear: Slow and steady wins the race – Less really is MORE!CELEBRATE CULTURE!AUGUST 18, 2018ANYBodiesPLAYGROUND(BAILEY PARK)11am to 3pmANNUAL REPORT CARD I SCENE 4307 13

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