As far-fetched as it might seem, a workout without movement is possible through isometric exercises or strength training exercises that don’t contract joints and muscles but still develop them. This is made possible by holding certain positions for a substantial amount of time. Isometric exercises, also called isometrics, are sometimes underrated but there is no better exercise to work the core and other muscle groups.
If you have limited space and no equipment, or if you just want to include a new element to your routine, then isometric exercises are perfect!
The Components of Isometrics
Isometrics have been used since the ancient times, usually through yoga or martial arts. In the 1960s, bodybuilding entrepreneur Bob Hoffman first introduced isometrics to the general public as a workout. Bruce Lee started embedding the exercise into his routine and since then, isometrics have been widely used by workout enthusiasts and athletes like gymnasts.
An isometric exercise works through the tension that the muscles experience. However, this isn’t achieved with rapid movement but through resistance. There are three forms of resistance or contraction that ultimately develop and strengthen the muscles: the concentric contraction or the shortening of the muscles, the eccentric contraction which happens when the muscles are lengthened, and the isometric or static contraction where the muscles don’t move at all.
Out of all these contractions, an isometric contraction is the most convenient, as it also has many benefits.
The Benefits of an Isometric Exercise
You might not have realised this, but you already practice isometric exercises in your daily life – from carrying heavy bags while standing, to holding on to railings during a bus ride. If you practice isometric exercises properly, here are some of the benefits you can enjoy:
If you’re applying pressure to your muscles, you’re training them to be strong – this results in improving your overall body strength. It sheds weight, tones your physique by building muscle and it even lowers blood pressure.
Even without any equipment, you can do isometric exercises anywhere and anytime you want. This means you can save time and strength which you can use for other workouts or activities.
Improves Posture and Prevents Injury
As your body is trained rigorously to withstand resistance, you’ll be more accustomed to body control, thus reducing the strain on your joints and improving your posture, giving you a better resistance against injury.
The proper way to do an isometric exercise is by squeezing in your muscles intensely under 10 to 15 seconds, while employing a suitable breathing technique.
Here are some effective isometric exercises:
Lie on the floor with your face down and subsequently raise your body with your forearms and toes. Maintain a straight line with your body and squeeze in your abs and glutes for a few seconds. Breathe accordingly.
Begin by leaning on a wall and lowering your body down as if you’re sitting. Level your knees with your hips until it turns to a squat, then squeeze in your muscles for a moment with all you’ve got!
Take a press-up position. Pull your right side up slowly – start by raising your arms towards the ceiling and tilt your body to the side with your right arm, using your feet as a support. Hold for a few seconds and repeat.
Stand up straight and put your hands in front of you at a 90-degree angle. Hold them together and squeeze your body vigorously for a predetermined time.
Find a sturdy bar, hold on tight and suspend yourself using both arms. Don’t make unnecessary movements and just let yourself hang and feel the burn.
More than extreme movements, keeping still with the right amount of intensity is also an effective workout – as it offers great benefits you wouldn’t expect. Try these isometric exercises in conjunction with Anavar from your trusted UK steroid provider, Steroids and Muscle.