You should be doing Rest Pause Training – Here’s why

You should be doing Rest Pause Training

Here’s why

Rest pause training or eccentric isometrics, are commonly seen on strength and muscle building forums, and yet, are still heavily underutilised.

Today, I share with you 3 of the many reasons you should you be adding eccentric isometrics to your regular fitness routine.


What is eccentric isometrics training?

First things first though… What exactly is eccentric isometrics training?

There are three types of muscle contractions:

  • Concentric – the muscle actively shortening
  • Eccentric – the muscle actively lengthening
  • Isometric – the muscle actively held at the same length

Eccentric Isometrics is a lifting technique which combines them all, involving a slow negative portion of a lift, followed by anisometric hold in a stretched position, and then finished with a fast-concentric movement.

Still not sure what these terms all mean? Here are some other terms you may recognise:

  • pause reps such as pause squats
  • Iso-holds
  • Yielding isometrics
  • Extreme isometrics
  • Iso-extremes.


Increased post activation

According to research, concentric muscle actions produce greater metabolic fatigue and require more energy expenditure than eccentric muscle actions. Why? Well, greater adenosine tri phosphate (ATP) is required for the excitation-contraction coupling process. “What is the ‘excitation-contraction coupling process’?” I hear you ask. It’s the physiological process of converting an electrical stimulus to a mechanical response.

Since the focus is not during the concentric portion, your lifts don’t fatigue as quickly (common in slow concentric movements) allowing longer duration during time under tension – mechanical tension and volume are the main variables in muscle growth.

By minimising the total time spent in the concentric phase, along with allowing greater time between each concentric action, this minimises the level of fatigue.


Increased proprioception

Yes, this word is a little difficult to pronounce, but what does it actually mean?

In short, proprioception is the ability to sense stimuli arising within the body regarding position, motion, and equilibrium. The sense of proprioception can be disturbed in many neurological disorders.

So, how does eccentric isometrics training increase proprioception?

The proprioception element gives better stability and balance between muscle groups allowing you to achieve better quality lifts.

In an investigation conducted by Dr Joel Seedman, it was found that “eccentric isometrics enhanced stability and symmetry in both upper and lower body compared to the control.  Just as interesting. was the fact that traditional training (standard concentric and eccentric phases using 80-90% 1RM) caused slight yet significant deterioration in levels of symmetry and stability.


Power & Torque, faster and safer

Did you know that the tempo of eccentric isometrics allows you to develop power and torque in a lift, while being safer and stimulating a better body balance too?

That’s not all… you’ll likely get all that done in less time too, because you won’t be required to do as many reps.  “Due to the potent nature of eccentric isometrics, a few sets of 3-5 repetitions on basic compound movement such as squats, presses, hinges, lunges, rows, and pullups will produce these benefits,” Seedman says. 


Precisely executed movement patterns combined with eccentric isometrics offer numerous benefits for novice and advanced lifters alike.

This really is the training tempo that just keeps on giving, so why not include it into your programming?

Want to find out how to apply eccentric isometrics, or ‘Rest Pause Training’ into your fitness regime?

I’m in Perth and I’m here to help you reach your fitness goas, the right way. Get in touch with me today.

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