Have you ever done a plank, it is an isometric exercise? Now you’ll ask what is isometric exercise? The answer is here.
Isometric exercise is a kind of workout that holds your body in a stable position. The associated muscles contract but do not move and change length while holding the same position.
We explain it more clearly when you hold a plank, you are contracting muscles of the core, legs, and upper extremities to hold the form up and maintain the same position.
However, isometric exercise remains a controversial topic in medical science because some groups of researchers talk in favour of that, whereas, other groups of researchers talk against that.
However, maximum votes go in favour of the goodness of isometric exercise on your muscle and entire body. Thus, we are focusing on its benefits over patients.
Read this article till the end to get the complete story.
What are isometric exercises?
Isometric exercises are kinds of exercises where engaged muscles contract but do not change their length.
Basically, this kind of exercise can be done by sitting in your comfortable position, for example, at your office desk or on your sofa watching your favourite tv show.
You don’t have to engage your mind while doing isometric exercises. These workouts are very simple yet effective for your core muscles, forearm muscle, cardiac health, and also improve cognitive behaviour.
Isometric exercise recruits muscles and exerts stress without moving or lengthening, it is an eccentric contraction or shortening (known as concentric contraction)
In an isometric contraction, the recruited muscles do not change their size. The form of exercises won’t change its position but focus on holding on to your body at a position for a stretch of time.
It’s a stale approach to putting an expectation on an ideal muscle or gathering of muscles without muscle or joint development.
Here the kind of resistance power comes from your body weight or gravity, the weight of the holding object, and the resistance of the equipment.
Isometric exercises are suitable for patients who have problems in a range of motion, have limited workout space, suffers from arthritis, and recovering from injury.
Many occupation therapists add isometric exercises in their rehabilitation training program as these can include tension to the muscles with limited joint movement.
These things allow a person to rebuild his muscular endurance and joint flexibility at their injured area by protecting them from further damage.
However, since the solid compressions in these moves are restricted, they should just fill in as a supplement to a more unique exercise routine, except if your actual mentor has prompted in any case.
Full body isometric exercise
Do 3 repetitions for the exercise mentioned here. Contract 10 seconds in every rep. If your objective is to lose weight, then use less amount of pressure; about 60% maximum contraction, rest period up to 30 seconds in between the sets.
On the other hand, if you are performing isometric exercises to strengthen, and grow existing muscle, use more force (80% maximum contraction),; rest for 40-50 seconds in between the exercises.
Here we list down some simple isometric exercises that are super effective for your muscle strength and weight loss. You can perform them at your resting time also, or after completing your high-intensity workout.
- Prayer pose
- Self-arm wrestling
- High plank
- Low plank
- Low squat
- Bent-over press against the wall
- Triceps extension against the wall.
Isometric exercises help you to strengthen muscles.
The process of developing muscle is termed muscular hypertrophy. It takes place when a muscle goes under metabolic as well as mechanical stress that stimulates muscle growth and increases strength.
This rebuilding process helps your body to synthesize muscle cells and create bigger muscles. Scientific study has proved that muscle contraction is important while muscle building.
In muscle lengthening or eccentric and muscle shortening or concentric; exercises stimulate muscle hypertrophy super effectively, as they put stress on the muscles.
Isometric exercises are the better option for individuals who prefer to avoid delayed-onset muscle soreness ( DOMS), as less muscle damage occurs.
Moreover, isometric exercises put fewer stretches on joints, thus there is less chance of injury, also beneficial for rehabilitation after injury.
If your objective is to build up muscle, then add isometric exercise at the end of your workout to increase muscular endurance and develop strength.
Isometric exercises help you to maintain a healthy blood pressure
If you want to decrease your elevated blood pressure without moving out from the chair, then isometric exercise is the best option to maintain healthy blood pressure.
Patients who have several restrictions in range of motions, for example, an individual who suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, joint pain, or just recovering from injury, can not move and do high-intensity exercise, can easily do isometric exercises.
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Doctors start talking about isometric exercises for high blood pressure because it effectively reduces blood pressure, and works like natural medicine.