Muscle Endurance/Pushup question

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by Jason Pair, Nov 6, 2005.

  1. Jason Pair

    Jason Pair Amateur Fighter

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    I'll make it short. Usually I just pump out a few quick "regular" pushups to warm up before I go through my bodyweight exercise training. However I've recently been wondering how much of a positive effect doing pushups in sets at a slow count could have on muscle endurance for grappling and/or kickboxing. For example the first pushup you hold about 3 seconds up position, go down, then up, then down hold for 3 seconds.. about the 8th hold the up position for about 10 seconds, go down hold for 10 seconds.. ect..

    Anyone ever have decent results adding something like this into a workout program?

    Thanks for answers.
     
  2. Brando

    Brando Green Belt

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    I can't contribute much here, but I know that holding the downward position of a push-up for say 1 minute is an effective "finisher".
     
  3. Urban

    Urban Savage Mystic

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    I think reps that you deliberately slow are fucking stupid. for performance or size purposes it just doesn't make any sense to me (unless you're training to perform slow).
     
  4. Frederic

    Frederic White Belt

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    The halfway hold is viscious as well.

    Doing the whole pushup slow (like a 5 or 10 second down and a 5 or 10 second up) works well. Even tougher is the 2 inches down, 1 inch up (and 2 inches up, 1 inch down on the way back up) makes the pushup or other exercise tougher. I've done the +2inch-1inch for kettlebell military presses, and it gets rather intense for a set of 5.
     
  5. Brendon Katz

    Brendon Katz Brown Belt Professional Fighter

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    leave the bodyweight exercises alone and go do weights.
     
  6. Jason Pair

    Jason Pair Amateur Fighter

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    Thanks for the response, that's about what I figured.. it wouldn't do much of anything. I'm in a law enforcement training program right now and among all the "physical training" bs the slow count pushups were one of the exercises so the question had been on my mind.
     
  7. Eclypse

    Eclypse White Belt

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    When you do any kind of training, there is something called "specificity of training" you have to keep in mind. Specificity of training means that your muscles will be most effective if you use them the way you train them, hence you should train them the way you want to use them. This isn't the absolute rule depending on what you're looking for, as varying your training by repetition speed is also a good way to break through strength plateaus.

    Actually, going with slower repetitions is a great way to make a lower weight hit your muscles harder. Not only that, but it also makes sure your muscles are getting strong equally all throughout the movement range, rather than just in the position where you're doing the push that generates the momentum that gets the weight to where it ends up. Usually, if you're "throwing" weights, relying on momentum, you're probably not bringing the weights back slowly either, which makes the previous statement all the more true. Again, if you're looking to do fast, hard punching, then speed is what you're looking for. Just make sure you're not relying on momentum to get it done; make sure your muscles are working equally hard from beginning to end of each repetition.

    However, what you're doing is more like isometric training. You are generating more strength work in the areas you pause in than anywhere else. This is a more extreme version of what I stated above. Pausing at the down position would be most useful to generate a lot of power and speed for a punch. Pausing at the up position wouldn't do you so much good. However, this pausing isn't going to do you much good at all for endurance; it's the number of repetitions you do to the point of muscle exhaustion or failure that makes the difference.

    For muscular endurance with a bit of strength mixed in, go with 12-16 reps to failure. For pure endurance, go for 16-20 reps. Muscular endurance makes a given workload less exhausting when done repetitively, like punching or wrestling. Be sure to include movements that you will be using to make it specific. Push the weights like you would punch or push.
     
  8. graedy

    graedy Brown Belt

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    To mix your training up you could try: slow eccentric-pause-explosive concentric.
    Studies showed, that the eccentric phase causes the most muscle breakdown while a fast concentric movement from a deadstop develops explosive power the best.
     
  9. Eclypse

    Eclypse White Belt

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    Indeed. It's said the best way to train is to have a fast, smooth, and controlled concentric movement with a nice, very slow eccentric movement. Your muscles are stronger for the eccentric movement, but agility comes into play much more often in the concentric movement.

    Everyone know what concentric and eccentric are, though?

    Concentric is the direction of movement when your muscles shorten under stress, directly resisting gravity. Eccentric is the opposite: the direction of movement when your muscles elongate under stress, going with gravity but controlling it as well. The difference can be confusing, though.

    Examples:
    Bicep curl
    Concentric: The hand curls the weight to the shoulder.
    Eccentric: The hand slowly returns the weight to the straight-arm position.

    Squat
    Concentric: One stands up straight.
    Eccentric: One lowers to the crouched starting position.

    The easiest way to recognize it is to watch the weights. If the weights are moving away from the ground with your movement, it's concentric. If the weights are approaching the ground with your movement, it's eccentric.
     
  10. bacon

    bacon Silver Belt

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    I just posted this in someone elses pushup thread. This is what I do.

    Plyo + pushup = yummy goodness.

    Start with you hands forming a triangle under your chest. Push up hard (hands should clear the ground) and land with your hands under your sholders, go down, push up hard and land with your hands slightly wider than shoulder width apart. Push up hard and return to the triangle. that's one. Do 10 or fifteen. When it gets easy, elevate your feet and start over. Use a swiss ball when you really want a challenge.
     

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