You might be new to working out, or you might have noticed that your progress has plateaued over the last few weeks. Whatever the case may be, the speed in which you lift and lower your weights while weight training can affect your fitness results. To figure out what’s best for you, here’s how doing fast and slow repetitions can benefit you.
The Significance of Repetition Speed
In regards to strength training, in particular, repetition speed refers to how fast you’re lifting a set of weights or resistance equipment. The tempo in which you’re lifting can be broken into three separate movements. Concentric, or lifting movements, are at the beginning of the exercise. Once you’ve reached the top of your lift, you transition into the isometric phase, in which you hold your position for a few seconds to increase the intensity and strain in your muscles. Lastly, lowering your weight back down at the end of your exercise is referred to as an eccentric movement. Changing the tempo or speed in which these phases are done will alter your overall end goal and the results you’ll see after a few weeks or months of training.
Why You Should do Slower Reps
If you’re looking to build muscle quickly, whether you’ve been training for years or are just starting out, then doing slower reps is the way to go. Workouts with slower reps cause your muscles to experience more time under tension, much more than with faster reps. The amount of time your muscles stay strained beneath a certain amount of weight will lead to an increase in muscle size. For beginners, doing slower reps with lighter weights is the safest bet to prevent muscle injuries. It’s also essential that you focus on your form as well before you move onto heavier weights.
Why You Should do Faster Reps
If your overall fitness goals are focused on improving your strength and muscle power, then doing faster repetitions might be more beneficial for you. A 2015 study published in Physiological Reports claimed that completing high-intensity training for eight weeks through a low volume resistance program increased arm mass when using faster repetitions.
A Combination of the Two?
While training using fast or slow repetitions has its perks, you can’t go wrong with combining the two throughout your workout. A 2014 study published by the Journal of Sports Medicine suggested that a combination of the two are ideal if your main fitness goal is to maximize your muscle growth.
At Forest City Fitness, we’re dedicated to helping you meet your fitness goals in a friendly and motivational environment. Located in London, Ontario, we help new and existing clients with fitness classes, personal training opportunities, and youth fitness programs. Feel free to stop by or book and appointment with one of our personal trainers or visit our website to learn more.