when he says single joint he means isolation exercises like concentration curls or calve raises. this will do little to affect ur cns cuz this exercises only affects a small group of muscles. Going to failure on Deadlifts or Squats or another large compound exercises like that is a different matter…or so i’ve heard.
yes. but the question is why he says:
“I think training to failure is okay and sometimes beneficial” "
apparantely he see something in training to failure that is different than not training to failure (after all)
and if indeed going to failure is prefered, over not going to failure, it should be in all our interests to go to failure as often as we can. this is why the question about CNS comes in so we easier can find out.[/quote]
First, why do you want to go to failure? Do you understand what it is, on a physiological level?
If you don’t know why one would purposely go to failure, or what it means to go to failure on a physiological level, then I’d strongly suggest that you go back and read over more strength training, and/or exercise physiology, articles/texts.
To put it very simply there are 3 accepted methods of recruiting your maximal number of Motor units/muscle fibers. They are:
- Lift a maximal load (at least 85% of 1RM)
- Lift a submaximal load explosively
- Lift a submaximal load to momentary muscular failure
So, you see that lifting to failure is just one of 3 possible methods of recruiting the maximal number of motor units that you can voluntarily recruit. It’s not necessary however. And tends to be more taxing, and thus requiring of more recovery, than the other two methods.
That’s why CW suggests that you stay away from failure for the most part, especially with big compound movements like DL’s, Bench, Squats, Oly Lifts, etc…
Also, you’ll notice that although he does say that “for smaller muscles/isolation exercises it’s ok to go to failure and sometimes beneficial”, for the most part he has you staying away from failure in the majority of his routines. Notice he says it’s “ok” and “SOMETIMES beneficial”, not better or always beneficial.
Like someone mentioned above going to failure on a set of preacher curls isn’t going to put a huge strain on your CNS, and therefore won’t take much time to recover from. Oh, and I have ready several studies (don’t have any links to them at present) where researchers found that going to failure was only beneficial if only done on 1 (usually the final) set. If done more than that it actually decreased performance.
Personally I rarely if ever to to failure. Yet my performance keeps improving and if my diet is good (which admittedly isn’t always ideal) I continue to build lean mass.
Hope that helps.