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Myofibrillar hypertrophy without weights.

Fred99

New member
I have to ask a strictly hypothetical question. If I don't give a damn about strength as in being able to lift a heavy weight, and I am only interested in myofibrillar hypertrophy and muscle tone from residual tension (according to PTTP) do I really need to lift weights? Everything I read suggests that it would be enough just to flex the muscles as hard as possible as often as possible. E.g. if I would do the "Most Muscular" pose several times a day, eventually I would look like I could bench a lot, even if I couldn't.
What do you guys think? Hypothetically of course...
 

AriSuper

New member
E.g. if I would do the "Most Muscular" pose several times a day, eventually I would look like I could bench a lot, even if I couldn't.

no, it doesn't work that way.

You can gain from that type of training but nothing significant in that department - its basically isometrics .
 

danfaz

New member
I know they spend time posing and I've read that it helps your muscle definition?

Most swear by it (and I did too during my highschool days of sporting a bikini). Seemed to help bring out the separation between muscles if you held poses for extended periods of time.
 

faizalenu

New member
I have to ask a strictly hypothetical question. If I don't give a damn about strength as in being able to lift a heavy weight, and I am only interested in myofibrillar hypertrophy and muscle tone from residual tension (according to PTTP) do I really need to lift weights? Everything I read suggests that it would be enough just to flex the muscles as hard as possible as often as possible. E.g. if I would do the "Most Muscular" pose several times a day, eventually I would look like I could bench a lot, even if I couldn't.
What do you guys think? Hypothetically of course...

Hypothetically, even though your argument is logical, it is flawed. Myofibrillar hypertrophy is about generating maximum tension. In order to generate that MAXIMAL tension, you need to push against or pull against something. You will never be able to generate the tension just by flexing that you would moving a heavy weight. That is the reason, in fact the only reason, that weight lifting exists.
 

Fred99

New member
Hypothetically, even though your argument is logical, it is flawed. Myofibrillar hypertrophy is about generating maximum tension. In order to generate that MAXIMAL tension, you need to push against or pull against something. You will never be able to generate the tension just by flexing that you would moving a heavy weight. That is the reason, in fact the only reason, that weight lifting exists.


Thanks for you answer. And yes, I agree, the only reason weightlifting exists is to help us poor people whose minds are not strong enough to send nerve signals to the muscles without an external reason (such as a heavy barbell).
But. My understanding of PTTP is that it is all about learning to tense the muscles as if lifting a maximum load when you are actually lifting sub maximal. And that the only reason to lift really heavy once in a while is because the body needs to get used to the weight.
And this is what I mean. If I'm not interested in lifting heavy, only to be able to tense my muscles, why can't I only "practice" tensing the muscles? Pavel writes about Sanchin katas and all that.
And about bodybuilders... They grow in a different way if I understand Pavel correctly. They need sarcoplasmic hypertrophy to get big. That's not what we're talking about here. It's a completely different thing as the body increases it's stores of glycogen and myoglobin in response of an exercise that makes they body enter into the world of lactic acid. Myofibrillar hypertrophy is increasing the stores of contractile proteins. And I still believe this can be acheived with only maximum tension and a really good mind-muscle connection.
Am I making sense?
 

fatman

New member
You can gain from that type of training but nothing significant in that department - its basically isometrics .

It is essentially isometric in nature. Isometrics are an excellent strength builder, when used properly, but they have a very limited application when it comes to building muscular size.

Myofibrillar hypertrophy is about generating maximum tension. In order to generate that MAXIMAL tension, you need to push against or pull against something. You will never be able to generate the tension just by flexing that you would moving a heavy weight. That is the reason, in fact the only reason, that weight lifting exists.

This is not 100% correct. Myofibrillar hypertrophy results from a breakdown of contractile fibers (muscle tissue) and their subsequent rebuilding as thicker/stronger fibers; this can be achieved with sub-maximal tension. In fact, you can flex individual muscles far more powerfully without a weight than while lifting weights. However, to get stronger at lifting weights, you need to lift heavy weights; most of us lack the mind-muscle connection and coordination to contract all the muscles engaged in deadlifting a heavy barbell off the floor, hence we need a barbell.

Posing/tensing will improve your muscular definition by leaps and bounds (unless you carry a lot of fat), but it is not sufficient to increase muscle mass.

There is a type of exercise called virtual resistance training, where you go through the motions of lifting weights / pulling or pushing against machines while attempting to replicate the tension you would generate doing the 'real' thing. It has been popularized by Greg Mangan (Google him), but was first put into text by Max Sick, the creator of Maxalding. There are people who swear by it and others who claim that it produces no results - as always, the truth is somewhere in the middle.

There is also a web page where all Maxalding books are available for free. Max Sick was a competitive weightlifter of tremendous strength who promoted body-building through muscle control. While he also lifted weights to prepare for competition, his methods contributed to a physique that would be the envy of most modern body-builders, which is highly uncharacteristic among Olympic lifters.

The Maxalding Website

As for building muscle on contraction only, I am skeptical but that could simply be due to a lack of mastery of the methods mentioned above.
 

faizalenu

New member
This is not 100% correct. Myofibrillar hypertrophy results from a breakdown of contractile fibers (muscle tissue) and their subsequent rebuilding as thicker/stronger fibers; this can be achieved with sub-maximal tension. In fact, you can flex individual muscles far more powerfully without a weight than while lifting weights. However, to get stronger at lifting weights, you need to lift heavy weights; most of us lack the mind-muscle connection and coordination to contract all the muscles engaged in deadlifting a heavy barbell off the floor, hence we need a barbell.

I could give two quid about being 100% correct. There is a reason nobody uses this free and on-paper practical method, it doesn't work AS WELL AS lifting the bar.
 

EricJMoss

New member
ask Dan Cenidoza about muscle control and how he uses it to do things like break chains.

When you are flexing a muscle, lifting weights etc. there are internal governors of your strength (don't give me that I don't care about strength biz). Your body wants to be lazy and conserve energy. Do you think you will be able to truly contract as hard as possible without weights? I doubt your nervous system is going to go full on just from you trying to will it.

just get strong and myofibrillar hypertrophy will follow...regardless if you give a damn about being strong or not
 

fatman

New member
ask Dan Cenidoza about muscle control and how he uses it to do things like break chains.

Interesting note... all of the old-time strongmen who incorporated chain-breaking into their performances used isometrics and muscle control. From Alexander Zass to Mike Dayton, who also broke baseball bats. But what did they know.
 

xen

New member
As an aside, has anyone used those electric stimulation machines before? Apparently they do build muscle from the hard contractions they create. I'm pretty sure I read that their strength building potential is not so good though.
 
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