Thursday, February 6, 2014

4 Ways You Can Add Isometric Exercises To Your Current Routine

I've always been a fan of Isometrics no only for building superior strength but to learn how to focus on a single point without moving a muscle. When done right, Isometrics can increase your strength, create vitality & health, give you an incredible body and doesn't take up much of your day to get awesome results. There are different ways to include Isometrics but here are a few main ones to get you going......

1. Use Isometrics as a finisher:
Isometric Exercises are intense and build strength quickly. By adding an isometric whole body exercise to the end of your workout you fatigue the entire body to a greater degree.
What do I mean by Whole Body Isometrics?There are several isometric exercises that incorporate the entire body. Try this for example. Stand next to a wall. Place your hands on the wall about chest level. Get in a low lunge position and push against the wall with all of your strength.
Did you feel your whole body engage? I bet you did. You’ll feel it from your calves and quads up to your shoulders and arms.
Do this exercise for 30-60 seconds as a “finisher” to your current routine and you’ll be blasted.

2. Use Isometrics in your Super Sets:
A super set is a combination of exercises that you do immediately without taking a rest in between.
One example is doing push ups and pull ups. You start off doing a set of push ups then after you fatigue you go straight into pull ups. That’s a super set because you do one exercise after the other.
However, try adding an isometric into the mix and you’ll increase the difficulty of your super set. For instance, you can add palm pushes right after you do push ups and isometric pull ups after the normal pull ups.
Here’s how to do palm pushes. Place your hands together in a prayer position. Push your hands together as tightly as you can. Do it for 30 seconds. This works the chest muscle group which is why you would want to do it right after the push ups.
Here’s how to do isometric pull ups. Lift yourself up on a pull up bar and hold the position with your elbows at a 45 degree angle. Do it as long as you can. This works the back muscles which is why you would want to do it right after the normal pull ups.
Adding both isometric exercises to your super set will fatigue your muscles so much more quickly.

3. Include Isometrics To Your Drop Sets:
A drop set is a series of exercises that are slightly less difficult than the previous exercise. Each exercise works the same muscle group but you recruit more muscle fibers and tear them after each step.
Most drop sets are used in combination with weights. Let’s take dumbbell curls which work the biceps, as an example.
A typical drop set is to start with a weight that you can do for 8-12 reps. Then once you fatigue fully, you grab a lighter weight and try to do as many as you can. Then you keep repeating this process until you can’t even lift a 10-15 lb dumbbell.
Try this: After you drop down in weight, while doing a drop set, lift your arms so they are in a 90 degree angle and squeeze them as hard as you can for 30 seconds. Do this before each drop and the pump will be amazing.

4. Do Isometrics During Your Recovery Period:
Exercise programs that are focused on strength or muscular gains need to incorporate rest days. Your body needs time to recover and “take a break” from very intense physical activity.
Isometric exercises can be done on active recovery days to help recover from typical strength programs.

I don’t recommend that you do a 30 minute isometric routine on your off days. Yet, you can certainly spend 5-10 minutes moving through some isometric postures to keep your muscles engaged.
If you’re interested in seeing a full 8 week isometric training plan to help you build strength and size, check out my fitness buddy Todd’s Isometric Strength program. Its super intense!

There you have it to get you started in your Isometric Training. Remember to ease up on the tension at first because Isometrics can be very exhausting. Build yourself up and that Isometrics can be used for Muscle Control, Speed Strength and many more.
8 Week Isometric Strength Training Program 

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