In order to know how to get the most benefit of each workout, you have to know the importance of muscle mechanics. That’s true no matter what your age, whether it’s 16 or 60, where you live, whether it’s in Baltimore, MD or Paris, France or what your physical shape, which varies from couch potato to competition perfect. It encompasses not only how the muscles work and what movements do to each muscle, but also how they work in synergy during each movement.
You start with the basics first.
The basics include getting all muscles to a level of fitness that allows you to move on to the second level. While you might want big guns, you need to work on your whole body first, because it takes a variety of movements that involve other muscles to get the results you want. If those other muscles aren’t ready to cooperate, you have an imbalance that can cause injury if you aren’t careful. Getting a solid foundation is important, whether you’re building a house or building your body. Step one is always to ensure you have a solid foundation.
You need to move each muscle in a variety of ways.
Your muscles contract two ways. In one type of contraction, the muscle remains the same length. That’s an isometric contraction. In the other type of contraction, the muscle shortens. That’s an isotonic contraction. In isotonic exercises, the joint is involved because there’s a lifting and lowering phase. This type of exercise is best for functional fitness. In isometric exercises there’s no joint movement. Both are good to build muscle size, endurance and strength.
You need to include both types of exercises in your workout to get the maximum benefit.
To get the maximum benefit from your workout, you have to do more than just focus on isolated muscles. Starting with a strong core is an excellent way, while also working all the muscles in the body. Having a strong core can help prevent injuries that occur doing everyday movements and create a stronger you to go on to building the body parts, like upper arms, that you want to improve.
- Isotonic exercises include exercises like leg extensions or may involve more than one joint and be compound isotonic exercises, such as lunges that involve more than one joint.
- Core exercises are often isometric exercises, such as planks and abdominal vacuums.
- When you’re exercising, even if you want to build strength, you need to work on flexibility at the same time. It increases your range of motion and helps prevent injuries as you build to lifting higher weights.
- Including all types of exercise in your program, isometric, isotonic, endurance, balance, flexibility and strength, builds a stronger base and a fitter you.