In my last post I wrote about whether or not Sports Massage should be painful.
In that post I referred to muscle knots.
I hear people talking about muscle knots all the time. But I am not sure many people actually understand what a muscle knot is.
So today, I thought I would write a short piece on what a muscle knot is...
Can a muscle get tied up in a knot?
No it can't.
Instead, a better term to use instead of muscle knot, would be muscle adhesion.
This is because, in a resting state, when a healthy muscle is relaxed and pliable, muscle fibres and groups of muscle fibres should be able to slide over one another somewhat.
With a muscle adhesion or muscle knot, the muscle (or part of a muscle) is in a chronic state of contraction that does not allow the fibres to slide over one another. The muscle will feel lumpy and it is not conducive to muscle health. This is because contracted muscle does not allow blood and lymph to feed its cells.
So there you have it.
A muscle knot is a chronic state of muscle contraction that does not allow the fibres to slide over one another and results in the sensation of lumps in the muscle.
In my previous article I wrote about muscle building principles.
Specifically, I wrote about a muscle building sweet spot.
This muscle building sweet spot involves performing exercises with a weight that allows for between six and twelve exercises per set to be performed.
This provides a compromise between going heavy, to maximise mechanical tension, and going long, to maximise metabolic stress.
However, we also need variety in our programmes. So, sometimes, you will need to move away from this idea of compromise and go all out with heavy, low volume training or, alternatively, lighter, high volume training.
High volume training methods have traditionally been used with great success in order to pack on substantial amounts of muscle.
Probably the most famous high volume training method, that has been used with great success, is German Volume Training.
Here's the lowdown on German Volume Training...
For any given exercise, the aim is to complete 10 sets of 10 repetitions, with the same weight on each set. That weight should be 60% of your 1RM (that is, 60% of the heaviest load that you could lift for a single repetition). Furthermore, you will need to adhere to a strict recovery period of one minute between each set.
This will feel relatively easy at first. But as you approach the end of the protocol, it will become brutally tough. Don't be surprised if, during your first attempt at German Volume Training, you fail to complete all 10 repetitions for all 10 sets.
So is German Volume Training the most effective way of building lots of new muscle?
Is German Volume Training a time-tested, old school training method, that can be occasionally and intelligently incorporated into your workout programme?
If you would like to learn how to incorporate German Volume Training and other high volume training methods into your muscle building programme, please get in touch by using the Chorlton Personal Training Contact Page!