Concentric Contractions

September 12, 2010 at 11:00 pm Leave a comment

A continuation of our education of the types of contractions your muscles can do to gain strength. Once again knowledge is power and the more you learn about your muscles and how to train them the more efficiently you will be able to achieve your goals. A review of the 3 standard contractions the muscle could perform when doing strengthening exercises was isometric, concentric, and finally eccentric contraction. Today we explore concentric contractions.


iStock_000004015784XSmallConcentric Contraction
– This type of contraction is where the muscle is activated to generate a force by shortening the actual length of the muscle. This type of contraction is usually used when building muscle. An example would be holding a dumbbell by your waist and then lifting your hand, bending your elbow, to bring the dumbbell towards your shoulder. The bicep muscle in this case shortens. Another example is the lower extremity, sitting on a chair (with / without an ankle weight) extending your leg from the sitting (90 degree bent angle at your knee) position to the straight leg position still in sitting (0 degree ankle at your knee). In this case the quad musculature has been concentrically contracted.

If you have been going to the gym at all then you are probable already performing this type of contraction in your exercise routine. However, now that you are more aware of the type of contraction your muscle is performing then concentrating on the muscle and its actual action can help your more define your physique.

Next week Eccentric Contractions!

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