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Dr. Darden: Static Contractions
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Mostly Dead

Avg. Al,

I think we are talking past each other, semantic issues but I think we are on the same page.

I'm talking about the average weight trainee, not bodybuilders or powerlifters. Those trying to be strong, healthy, and fit i.e. the vast majority of trainees, old and young. Not those trying to maximize muscle size or strength.

The idea that one needs a $10k machine to properly weight train is ridiculous. When a company advertises the latest, greatest, overpriced machine that one doesn't need, the unsubstantiated claims begin.

The company will release a bunch of charts, graphs, and examples of trainees that made spectacular gains to show its superiority. That is how weight training equipment has been sold since the days of AJ. An example is AJ trying to link the muscles created by large doses of steroids seen on Pro BB's to his Nautilus machines. That was false, he knew it, and anyone with a room temperature IQ knows it to be the truth as well.

MD
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entsminger

Virginia, USA

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
entsminger wrote:
ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Average Al wrote:

For Scott: go to Hutchins latest web site, Serious Exercise, and look at the article under "Positions for TSC"


Just for Scott,

1-arm shrugs with the other arm anchored allows full range of motion for the upper trapezius muscle. At the top position (static) one should turn their head slightly away from the shrug motion which is a natural full contraction of this muscle.

== Scott ==
Yes this picture makes sense, the other one didn?t .

Sorry Scott,

I will try harder to make my posts clear, concise and more enjoyable to read.


Marc


== Scott ==
Thanks
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Average Al

Mostly Dead wrote:
Avg. Al,

I think we are talking past each other, semantic issues but I think we are on the same page.

I'm talking about the average weight trainee, not bodybuilders or powerlifters. Those trying to be strong, healthy, and fit i.e. the vast majority of trainees, old and young. Not those trying to maximize muscle size or strength.

The idea that one needs a $10k machine to properly weight train is ridiculous. When a company advertises the latest, greatest, overpriced machine that one doesn't need, the unsubstantiated claims begin.

The company will release a bunch of charts, graphs, and examples of trainees that made spectacular gains to show its superiority. That is how weight training equipment has been sold since the days of AJ. An example is AJ trying to link the muscles created by large doses of steroids seen on Pro BB's to his Nautilus machines. That was false, he knew it, and anyone with a room temperature IQ knows it to be the truth as well.

MD


I am fairly neutral on the whole machine versus free weight debate. I use mostly free weights, but if my gym has a machine that feels right, and the movement fits into my current exercise scheme, I will give it a go. I do have a bum shoulder, and find that free weight benching kind of aggravates it, whereas I can do certain chest press machines without aggravating the injury. Guess what I prefer to use...

But I agree that there has been a lot of hype and overblown claims made by folks trying to sell expensive exercise equipment, or access to training time on expensive specialized equipment. You obviously do not need that stuff to get in shape. Caveat Emptor!



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hit4me

Florida, USA

Mostly Dead wrote:
Avg. Al,

I think we are talking past each other, semantic issues but I think we are on the same page.

I'm talking about the average weight trainee, not bodybuilders or powerlifters. Those trying to be strong, healthy, and fit i.e. the vast majority of trainees, old and young. Not those trying to maximize muscle size or strength.

The idea that one needs a $10k machine to properly weight train is ridiculous. When a company advertises the latest, greatest, overpriced machine that one doesn't need, the unsubstantiated claims begin.

The company will release a bunch of charts, graphs, and examples of trainees that made spectacular gains to show its superiority. That is how weight training equipment has been sold since the days of AJ. An example is AJ trying to link the muscles created by large doses of steroids seen on Pro BB's to his Nautilus machines. That was false, he knew it, and anyone with a room temperature IQ knows it to be the truth as well.

MD


false marketing has been happening forever....remember the Charles atlas ad in the comic books, or the pilates equipment or even the machine that shook you with the band wrapped around your waist, weider did the same thing with his supplements
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ATP 4 Vitality

Certain injuries get little attention among physical trainers. One such injury is a detached retina. Reputable ophthalmologists will quickly recommend a cessation of heavy object lifting after occurring such an injury. Generally after treatment a person is allowed to resume lifting heavy objects with certain restrictions.

I am currently training a person with such circumstances. Certain types of static contractions have proved valuable in this case. First, heavy weight lifting can cause eye/face squinting, which is problematic in these types of patients. I particularly noticed face/eye squinting with high percentage maximal weight used on the Nautilus decline press. Therefore, I proposed to use isometric hold times of up to 3 minutes in duration. This has eliminated face/eye squinting. I prefer a lower percentage weight with longer hold times instead of Ken Hutchins timed static protocol. I feel that aerobic/anaerobic metabolism affects isometric fiber recruitment patterns very little. Furthermore, breathing can be controlled readily with longer duration isometric holds, which makes the Valsalva maneuver much less likely to occur.

What is your experiences?
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sirloin

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Certain injuries get little attention among physical trainers. One such injury is a detached retina. Reputable ophthalmologists will quickly recommend a cessation of heavy object lifting after occurring such an injury. Generally after treatment a person is allowed to resume lifting heavy objects with certain restrictions.

I am currently training a person with such circumstances. Certain types of static contractions have proved valuable in this case. First, heavy weight lifting can cause eye/face squinting, which is problematic in these types of patients. I particularly noticed face/eye squinting with high percentage maximal weight used on the Nautilus decline press. Therefore, I proposed to use isometric hold times of up to 3 minutes in duration. This has eliminated face/eye squinting. I prefer a lower percentage weight with longer hold times instead of Ken Hutchins timed static protocol. I feel that aerobic/anaerobic metabolism affects isometric fiber recruitment patterns very little. Furthermore, breathing can be controlled readily with longer duration isometric holds, which makes the Valsalva maneuver much less likely to occur.

What is your experiences?


I made good progress in the past with max static holds, still salt them in here and there. Eye health is good.
Today i used the pec deck machine a little differently, ramping holds...
- 90kg x 15 secs
- 110kg x 15 secs
- 130kg x 15 secs
- 150kg x 13 secs to fail
- 170kg x 9 seconds to fail

Only enough time to change the weight and safely get back into position. Pecs where pumped and fatigued to a great extent! I dont believe in coming back down the weights like with max pyramid, completely unnecessary to do one drop set after another imo. Did the same with parallel grip pulldowns aswell, holding where the upper arms are parallel, lats where smoked aswell!!
Trap bar static holds are my favorite, working up to a 5 second max.
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sirloin

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Resultsbased wrote:
If eccentrics have been overstated, I can think of nobody who has had a louder voice than Darden on the value of eccentrics.

Perhaps NASA will be more open to the idea of statics as they concluded isometrics wont cut it.

Without negative work potential, this method (Timed Static Contraction) should be well suited for space.

Looking forward to the results produced here on Earth...GRAVITY!


Running downhill (eccentrics) doesn't cause any appreciable hypertrophy. Similar hypertrophy can be had with very light weights and blood flow restriction which by such actions cause little microscopic tears. Is eccentric that important? I do not know. Too bad RENEX did not state this with their rhetoric.

https://www.strongerbyscience....

http://sigmanutrition.com/epis...




For some time, ive had a hard time buying into the idea of micro trauma / tears. I saw better growth in legs from heavy prowler pushes than with squats and leg presses, better trap growth with TBDLs off blocks and farmers walks than with shrugs.
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Nwlifter

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Certain injuries get little attention among physical trainers. One such injury is a detached retina. Reputable ophthalmologists will quickly recommend a cessation of heavy object lifting after occurring such an injury. Generally after treatment a person is allowed to resume lifting heavy objects with certain restrictions.

I am currently training a person with such circumstances. Certain types of static contractions have proved valuable in this case. First, heavy weight lifting can cause eye/face squinting, which is problematic in these types of patients. I particularly noticed face/eye squinting with high percentage maximal weight used on the Nautilus decline press. Therefore, I proposed to use isometric hold times of up to 3 minutes in duration. This has eliminated face/eye squinting. I prefer a lower percentage weight with longer hold times instead of Ken Hutchins timed static protocol. I feel that aerobic/anaerobic metabolism affects isometric fiber recruitment patterns very little. Furthermore, breathing can be controlled readily with longer duration isometric holds, which makes the Valsalva maneuver much less likely to occur.

What is your experiences?


My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.
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tensionstrength

Very motivating posts here referencing shorter and long static contraction times.
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Landau

Florida, USA

Slow and Stop was Written about in a Book by Bob Hoffman in 1962 - Nothing New and Forget the GIGO
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Resultsbased

Nwlifter wrote:
ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Certain injuries get little attention among physical trainers. One such injury is a detached retina. Reputable ophthalmologists will quickly recommend a cessation of heavy object lifting after occurring such an injury. Generally after treatment a person is allowed to resume lifting heavy objects with certain restrictions.

I am currently training a person with such circumstances. Certain types of static contractions have proved valuable in this case. First, heavy weight lifting can cause eye/face squinting, which is problematic in these types of patients. I particularly noticed face/eye squinting with high percentage maximal weight used on the Nautilus decline press. Therefore, I proposed to use isometric hold times of up to 3 minutes in duration. This has eliminated face/eye squinting. I prefer a lower percentage weight with longer hold times instead of Ken Hutchins timed static protocol. I feel that aerobic/anaerobic metabolism affects isometric fiber recruitment patterns very little. Furthermore, breathing can be controlled readily with longer duration isometric holds, which makes the Valsalva maneuver much less likely to occur.

What is your experiences?

My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.



A rise in pressure can occur from lifting no weight and this is what occurs during an isometric protocol like Timed Static Contraction. It would be interesting to see what kind of increases in blood pressure are seen during isometrics compared to isotonics.

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Nwlifter

Resultsbased wrote:
Nwlifter wrote:
ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Certain injuries get little attention among physical trainers. One such injury is a detached retina. Reputable ophthalmologists will quickly recommend a cessation of heavy object lifting after occurring such an injury. Generally after treatment a person is allowed to resume lifting heavy objects with certain restrictions.

I am currently training a person with such circumstances. Certain types of static contractions have proved valuable in this case. First, heavy weight lifting can cause eye/face squinting, which is problematic in these types of patients. I particularly noticed face/eye squinting with high percentage maximal weight used on the Nautilus decline press. Therefore, I proposed to use isometric hold times of up to 3 minutes in duration. This has eliminated face/eye squinting. I prefer a lower percentage weight with longer hold times instead of Ken Hutchins timed static protocol. I feel that aerobic/anaerobic metabolism affects isometric fiber recruitment patterns very little. Furthermore, breathing can be controlled readily with longer duration isometric holds, which makes the Valsalva maneuver much less likely to occur.

What is your experiences?

My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.


A rise in pressure can occur from lifting no weight and this is what occurs during an isometric protocol like Timed Static Contraction. It would be interesting to see what kind of increases in blood pressure are seen during isometrics compared to isotonics.



I imagine with a big compound, backing that much blood up through the occlusive effects, it goes pretty high.
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ATP 4 Vitality

sirloin wrote:
I made good progress in the past with max static holds, still salt them in here and there. Eye health is good.
Today i used the pec deck machine a little differently, ramping holds...
- 90kg x 15 secs
- 110kg x 15 secs
- 130kg x 15 secs
- 150kg x 13 secs to fail
- 170kg x 9 seconds to fail

Only enough time to change the weight and safely get back into position. Pecs where pumped and fatigued to a great extent! I dont believe in coming back down the weights like with max pyramid, completely unnecessary to do one drop set after another imo. Did the same with parallel grip pulldowns aswell, holding where the upper arms are parallel, lats where smoked aswell!!
Trap bar static holds are my favorite, working up to a 5 second max.


Great post!

I have a Nautilus double chest, and I am very careful with isometrics while doing the arm cross portion of this particular machine. I get a feeling/sensation like my shoulder is going to explode on the arm cross when enough weight is used for an isometric hold. I am of the same opinion of the Nautilus pullover. There are smaller muscle in the upper thoracic region of the torso that are poorly equipped for heavy resistance in extreme stretched position available in a full range of motion available on the pullover. Therefore, isometrics, mid-range, work well for the Nautilus pullover.


I envy your static trap bar deadlifts. This is most likely the most result-producing exercise in existence. I am very cautious of spinal compression with heavy weights, although some compression should be ok as Wolff's Law would apply.


Keep up the good work!


Marc
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ATP 4 Vitality

sirloin wrote:
For some time, ive had a hard time buying into the idea of micro trauma / tears. I saw better growth in legs from heavy prowler pushes than with squats and leg presses, better trap growth with TBDLs off blocks and farmers walks than with shrugs.


There is a lack of facts, logic, and knowledge to promote microtrauma as the main driver of hypertrophy. The old preponderance of evidence argument is a poor debate tactic. Don't fall for it!
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ATP 4 Vitality

Nwlifter wrote:
My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.


Thanks for the clarification. The lady just today got a clean bill of health for her eyes. The long duration isometrics have had no observable effects on examination of her eyes. The Ophthalmologist told her to continue to weight lift.
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ATP 4 Vitality

Nwlifter wrote:
I imagine with a big compound, backing that much blood up through the occlusive effects, it goes pretty high.


All resistance training will increase blood pressure. I like isometrics because breathing can be regulated readily, and the Valsalva maneuver can be mostly avoided during these isometric holds. However, during heavy isometrics, over 80% of maximum resistance, the natural reaction of the body is to evoke the Valsalva maneuver. The VM decreases venous return due to increased intra-abdominal pressure. Therfore, cardiac output decreases. This information just destroyed McGuff's cardio arguments
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Nwlifter

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Nwlifter wrote:
My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.

Thanks for the clarification. The lady just today got a clean bill of health for her eyes. The long duration isometrics have had no observable effects on examination of her eyes. The Ophthalmologist told her to continue to weight lift.


that's good, my wife had to even avoid a dental drill for months, the vibration could hamper the healing and cause another detachment if done too early.
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ATP 4 Vitality

Nwlifter wrote:
ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Nwlifter wrote:
My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.

Thanks for the clarification. The lady just today got a clean bill of health for her eyes. The long duration isometrics have had no observable effects on examination of her eyes. The Ophthalmologist told her to continue to weight lift.

that's good, my wife had to even avoid a dental drill for months, the vibration could hamper the healing and cause another detachment if done too early.



If I remember correctly, the ophthalmologist restricted all weights to 5 pounds or so. She could do all the cardio she wanted..... 1 hour walks daily
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Nwlifter

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Nwlifter wrote:
ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
Nwlifter wrote:
My wife just had surgery for a retina detachment, it's not squinting that affects it at all. It's the rise in blood pressure from lifting something heavy that must be avoided.

Thanks for the clarification. The lady just today got a clean bill of health for her eyes. The long duration isometrics have had no observable effects on examination of her eyes. The Ophthalmologist told her to continue to weight lift.

that's good, my wife had to even avoid a dental drill for months, the vibration could hamper the healing and cause another detachment if done too early.


If I remember correctly, the ophthalmologist restricted all weights to 5 pounds or so. She could do all the cardio she wanted..... 1 hour walks daily


My wife too, lift 5-10 lbs only, also avoid even really bumpy roads in the car. Once that detaches and is fixed and healing, it's REALLY sensitive. She still ended up getting scar tissue and having the whole surgery all over again a 2nd time.
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Resultsbased

I found this interesting concerning static exercise and cardiac output.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/...pubmed/6535242/
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sirloin

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
sirloin wrote:
I made good progress in the past with max static holds, still salt them in here and there. Eye health is good.
Today i used the pec deck machine a little differently, ramping holds...
- 90kg x 15 secs
- 110kg x 15 secs
- 130kg x 15 secs
- 150kg x 13 secs to fail
- 170kg x 9 seconds to fail

Only enough time to change the weight and safely get back into position. Pecs where pumped and fatigued to a great extent! I dont believe in coming back down the weights like with max pyramid, completely unnecessary to do one drop set after another imo. Did the same with parallel grip pulldowns aswell, holding where the upper arms are parallel, lats where smoked aswell!!
Trap bar static holds are my favorite, working up to a 5 second max.


Great post!

I have a Nautilus double chest, and I am very careful with isometrics while doing the arm cross portion of this particular machine. I get a feeling/sensation like my shoulder is going to explode on the arm cross when enough weight is used for an isometric hold. I am of the same opinion of the Nautilus pullover. There are smaller muscle in the upper thoracic region of the torso that are poorly equipped for heavy resistance in extreme stretched position available in a full range of motion available on the pullover. Therefore, isometrics, mid-range, work well for the Nautilus pullover.


I envy your static trap bar deadlifts. This is most likely the most result-producing exercise in existence. I am very cautious of spinal compression with heavy weights, although some compression should be ok as Wolff's Law would apply.


Keep up the good work!


Marc


Thanks Marc,

Interesting, that explains why i always felt tightness in my upper thoraric when in the stretched position of stiff arm pulldowns.

Re Max static trap bar hold; its a great exercise, but without a doubt its risky and stressful, where am no longer a fan of equipped lifting, this is the one exercise i would say that straps / hooks, a good belt and knee supports / wraps are paramount. Its also an exercise i wouldnt recommend training anymore than 2-3 times per year, irrespective of the indivduals strength level or recovery ability.
The last time i did it, it took several days before i felt human again (brain fog).

Best
Rob
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sirloin

ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
sirloin wrote:
For some time, ive had a hard time buying into the idea of micro trauma / tears. I saw better growth in legs from heavy prowler pushes than with squats and leg presses, better trap growth with TBDLs off blocks and farmers walks than with shrugs.

There is a lack of facts, logic, and knowledge to promote microtrauma as the main driver of hypertrophy. The old preponderance of evidence argument is a poor debate tactic. Don't fall for it!


Yeah, the idea of causing these tears and them recovering and coming back stronger just doesnt make sense to me, when our skin for example is cut or tore and heals, it doesnt come back stronger, its becomes scare tissue...which is weaker!
I also dont buy into increased protein syntheis, or growth hormone release etc, Imo the main cause is electrical, CNS driven for the most part. Jones talked about the indirect effect of exercise (throwing a stone in a pool and it creating a wave that run to the edges of the pool).
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Average Al

sirloin wrote:
ATP 4 Vitality wrote:
sirloin wrote:
For some time, ive had a hard time buying into the idea of micro trauma / tears. I saw better growth in legs from heavy prowler pushes than with squats and leg presses, better trap growth with TBDLs off blocks and farmers walks than with shrugs.

There is a lack of facts, logic, and knowledge to promote microtrauma as the main driver of hypertrophy. The old preponderance of evidence argument is a poor debate tactic. Don't fall for it!

Yeah, the idea of causing these tears and them recovering and coming back stronger just doesnt make sense to me, when our skin for example is cut or tore and heals, it doesnt come back stronger, its becomes scare tissue, which is weaker.
I also dont buy into increased protein syntheis, or growth hormone release. Imo the main cause is electrical, CNS driven for the most part. Jones talked about the indirect effect of exercise (throwing a stone in a pool and it creating a wave that run to the edges of the pool).


There have been some recent studies which have concluded that elevated rates of protein synthesis after eccentric exercise is simply a response to increased levels of tissue damage, and is not indicative of greater hypertrophy. If you damage more tissue, you need to synthesize more protein to make the necessary repairs; this does not necessarily lead to bigger gains.

Also, some studies have suggested that the soreness that you feel after doing a lot of eccentrics is actually from damaged or inflamed connective tissue that binds the muscle fibers together (extra cellular matrix). Again, when this is damaged, protein must be synthesized to make the necessary repairs.

To quote one author:

"It's been a long-held belief in bodybuilding and gym-rat fitness circles that muscle soreness is caused when tiny tears that happen in the muscle in response to weight training.

This is an example of sound-bite science. There's a kernel of truth there, but some hasty assumptions and logical leaps that make it incorrect."

https://www.myosynthesis.com/...muscle-soreness


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sirloin

Resultsbased wrote:
I found this interesting concerning static exercise and cardiac output.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/...535242/


Hey RB,

This is why i generally keep my holds shorter, with a short rest pause, then go again vs one long hold. But ive been employing static holds now for 6-7 years, thankfully theres been no negative effects.
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Resultsbased

sirloin wrote:
Resultsbased wrote:
I found this interesting concerning static exercise and cardiac output.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/...pubmed/6535242/

Hey RB,

This is why i generally keep my holds shorter, with a short rest pause, then go again vs one long hold. But ive been employing static holds now for 6-7 years, thankfully theres been no negative effects.


Sirloin,

I've very much enjoyed seeing your progress on your thread - motivating me to work harder!

I have found that when I perform statics such as Timed Static Contraction, there is a noticeable increase in HR after the set and this paper would explain why.

I am still undecided as to whether or not these longer duration statics are safe from a CV standpoint. Shorter duration like what you are performing would seem safe.

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