Posted on May 18 2017
You may have heard that you can build muscle by flexing, but is this true or just an old exercise myth? It's actually true that you can exercise muscle through the process of flexing your muscles because you're exposing them to a specific form of exercise.
When you flex your muscles, you're performing isometric exercises. An isometric exercise is one where you contract your muscle for an extended period of time. Usually you'll hold it from five seconds to half a minute.
If you've ever looked in the mirror and flexed your biceps, you've performed an isometric exercise. This does work your muscles. And while isometrics can be part of your workout program, they're not likely to build a whole lot of bulk on their own.
That's because when you contract your muscles without adding additional weight, you don't put enough stress on the muscle fibers. When you lift weights, you actually tear the muscle fibers in your body.
During the recovery after your workout, your body repairs and rebuilds and your muscles grow. You can get more tone and definition and you can even gain some strength from these exercises. But if you're looking to add a lot of muscle to your frame, you're not likely to do it through flexing alone.
The best way to perform an isometric effectively is to contract your muscle until you feel a shaking and you can no longer keep your muscle still. With isometric exercise this is the point of failure and provides the best benefits.
You can perform isometrics with any area of the body by contracting and holding the position. This works for upper body and lower body exercises. While you still need to add some weights to your routine, isometrics are good because they don't require special equipment.
In addition, you can perform these flexing exercises anywhere and at any time. They're perfect for when you're traveling or don't have time to complete a full workout at home or at the gym. However, you shouldn't depend on flexing for your entire fitness program.
You'll need to add more resistance to really define and build muscle. You'll also need to add good nutrition and rest to your routine in order to reach your fitness goals. But if you're looking for an activity to add to a good fitness routine, isometrics can be helpful.
You can enhance and build muscle by flexing, but flexing alone isn't going to be enough to bulk up your muscles. Hit the weights!
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