Benefits Of Isometric Exercises, by Louis Simmons
Isometrics have been around since the 1950s. It was an effective method to develop strength at a particular angle and affordable to most because of the limited amount of equipment needed.
The famous Bob Hoffman of York Barbell fame manufactured an isometric power rack in the 1960s. T Hettinger and E. Mueller found that a small workout daily for 10 weeks would increase strength about 5% per week, which was maintained for a month.
There has always been the question, which is more productive, dynamic or isometric exercises? In my opinion, both must be trained.
There are always pros and cons for any type of training. Here are the benefits:
-Isometrics take less time and energy to perform a workout.
-You can maintain speed strength while doing isometric training.
-For those wanting to remain in a particular weight class, isometrics won’t add muscle mass.
-They fortify technique in crucial positions. A coach can watch to see form breaks at many different angles of the lift.
-Maximal effort can be displayed longer than with dynamic work.
-When doing dynamic work, maximal effort is displayed for a fraction of a second at the mini-max, or sticking point. While doing speed deadlifts, all looks well. The bar is blasted from the floor to lockout. However, with a max effort deadlift, the bar stops at the knee or just before lockout. Hardly any work is done at the mini-max. It’s just too fast. A 3-second isometric hold can be equal to many dynamic contractions.
The work at a particular angle is radiated 15% either above or below the point where the force is applied.
It sounds contradictory, but holding your breath can boost endurance. Remember, a swimmer inhales only once every 3 or 4 strokes.
The following points are disadvantages of isometrics.
-Isometrics are not to be used before puberty or if one is a novice.
-Isometrics can fatigue the central nervous system.
-If done alone, a loss of some coordination will occur.
-Holding your breath for a long time can have a negative effect on the cardiovascular system.
My 2¢: Isometric exercises are invaluable strength builders, especially for beginners. Why? By definition, no movements are required. If an athlete can simply get into a good position, then contracting to keep that position becomes the only issue. If you don't think isometric exercises work, try doing Tabata Hollow Body!
Complete three rounds for time of:
30 Squat cleans (95#/65#)
Run 800 meters