Using Tempo When Training
To achieve a body transformation, getting stronger is one key to improve the body composition as this allows you to add more muscle to your frame. But there are many ways you can progress with any given exercise in your program.
Below are 6 considerations, that all are somewhat interconnected:
- Improve Technique
- Increase Strength with more Load
- Increase Volume through Sets and Reps
- Increase Range of Motion (ROM)
- Increase Time Under Tension (TUT)
- Increase / Decrease Tempo
Because the world is suffering from the COVID-19 epidemic, gyms are closed and many people are being forced to stay inside – this article will focus on TEMPO as this is a way to make your home training plans more efficient.
Tempo is the speed of which you perform your exercises.
In any movement, you have 4 points where we would prescribe a time.
- The eccentric phase (stretch of the muscle)
- The point between the stretch and contraction phase (isometric stretch).
- The concentric phase (the shortening of the muscle)
- The point between the concentric and the eccentric phase (isometric contraction)
By paying attention to your tempo, you can either increase the time under tension by slowing the tempo, or you can make the exercises more explosive by speeding up the tempo. But when it comes to home training you might have little to no equipment to rely on for you to get stronger. Here you will get more out of your training when you slow down your tempo, adding pauses and taking shorter breaks between your sets as you will fatigue and hit muscular failure easier.
Here is how to read tempo as in order of numbers.
3 = 3 seconds on the eccentric phase
1 = 1 second in the isometric stretch
2 = 2 seconds on the concentric phase
0 = 0 seconds in the concentric stretch – so as soon as you reach the top you start your next repetition on the eccentric phase.
Training from home and focusing on tempo is also a fantastic opportunity to nail technique and improve your mind muscle connection. So when you are ready to get back into the gym and lift heavier loads, you will be able to improve your biggest lifts and see faster results.