The countless intricacies of superior training can be all too overwhelming if you are constantly thinking about them and not using concentric concentration. You start worrying about all the little mistakes that may be occurring while you workout, start second-guessing your decisions in the gym and start changing things up prematurely in an effort to capitalize upon each workout.
Instead of allowing yourself to go through all of this, why not just enjoy your time in the gym as much as you possibly can and just focus on one, maybe two significant training strategies instead?
This is a much better way to approach things and to get you off to a good start with this new mindset, I challenge you to focus all of your concentration within your training on one single element; the concentric concentration phase of your repetitions. Just by really emphasizing the squeeze of each rep, you will elevate your training to a whole new level that will allow for an entirely new look to your muscles to occur while new development sets in.
Read on to find out more.
Extend but avoid Hyperextending
One of the real hazards of training with an emphasis on squeezing through the concentric is the chance of hyperextending at the joint. When you flex certain muscles of the body such as the triceps or the quadriceps, there’s a very good chance that you may overdo it and extend the joint too far. If this were to occur, you would feel instant pain in the joint itself and know right away you did something you shouldn’t have done.
So to avoid this while still benefitting from extreme contractions, learn how to flex and contract the muscle just shy of any lockout that could occur. You’ll still get all the benefits of placing a high level of stress on a shortened muscle minus the chance of hyperextension occurring.
Slow things Down Using Concentric Concentration
Many times, in an effort to simply bang out a predetermined number of repetitions, the speed for which the weight travels through the concentric is too fast and too ballistic in nature to capitalize on that portion of the rep. Rather than just blasting up through the positive phase, slow it down and take some time to not only move the weight up and through that plan of motion but also to actively flex the muscle yourself.
Instead of just letting the load or resistance flex the muscle for you, do so yourself as well. When you slow things down you can concentrate on doing this so take your time and make the reps count instead of simply counting the reps.
Spend Time Flexing
If you are a competitive bodybuilder then chances are you already spend a considerable amount of time practicing your posing and flexing your muscles to gain total control. But flexing isn’t just for the competitive bodybuilder, it’s also for someone who wants to learn how to control the muscle and figure out how it should feel while shortening and contracting so that when resistance is applied, the same but heightened feeling can ensue with this form of concentric concentration.
When you learn how to control your muscles, you learn how to manipulate the amount of work they can do all at the same time. After being able to successfully learn how to do this, then and only then will you be actively involved in the lifting process rather than just being someone who moves weights from point a to point b.
Most of the time, people don’t really have too much trouble with the concentric concentration part of their training. It’s usually a lack of time spent in the eccentric that has been holding them back. That said, however, it’s important to really know what you’re doing while moving through the concentric and if you aren’t aware of what it is you’re supposed to be doing or haven’t taken the time to think about it all that much, it might be very advantageous for you to take a closer look at what you do during this phase of the repetition.
Chances are you’re missing out on some little nuance of this part of the rep so it’ll definitely be to your benefit to figure this out not for the purposes of adding something else for you to think about while training but simply to ensure you’re always maximizing your efforts with something as simple as this with concentric concentration.
Author: Dana Bushell
Gym Star Team Member