T Nation

Confused About Hypertrophy


Extracted from wikipedia definition of "hypertrophy":

[i]Two different types of hypertrophy are common; Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, in which sarcoplasmic fluid in the muscle cell increases rather than the contractile protein, and hence no increase in contactile strength. Myofibrillated Hypertrophy, in which there is an increase in myofibrils, and hence increase in muscular contractile strength.

Resistance training typically produces a combination of the two different types of hypertrophy; contraction against 80-90% of the 1RM for lower number of repetitions causes myofibrillated hypertrophy to dominate (as in powerlifters, olympic lifters and strength athletes), while several repetitions against a sub-maximal load facilitates mainly sarcoplasmic hypertrophy (professional bodybuilders and endurance athletes).[/i]

Does this mean that lifting weight "like a bodybuilder" only increases muscle size but not their strength and/or work capacity?

What if you aim to increase muscle mass but at the same time become strong (ie. not just train for all show,no go)?? Does one have to train like a powerlifter then??


So you havent read one single training article on this site have you?


Just lift. If you do, you will get bigger and stronger.

I don't know if you are trying to figure something out for your own program or you are just into learning. Either way it is bad for your personal progress right now. You are gonna fill your head up with unnecessary things at this point. Seriously, you don't even need a training style other than lift hard and eat a lot. Any thing you do with some intensity at this point will result in big gains. Once you've been in the game for over 5 years you can worry about the technical aspects.

Train hard, eat, and quit posting so much!


You got that from Wikipedia?!

I'd say work capacity is improved to a greater extent with sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, but that could just be based on my definition of "work capacity".

Otherwise, the answer to your questions is yes -but the strength coaches here have a way of messing around with variables to get the best of both worlds.

Did you read Mike Robertson's article from Thursday?


No, I must have missed it. Could someone please tell me the name of this article?

Basically, I just lift for aesthetic purposes. The thing is, I also want my efforts to produce an increase in strength as well as size.

Afterall, what is the use of big, imposing muscles if later you aren't strong enough to push an SUV (for example)?

To the other poster who asked, I just wanted to know about this issue for learning purposes. In no way was I going to change my current programme (which is Chad's ABBH programme btw).
But there is no harm in learning and finding out new, interesting stuff everyday- isn't it?


Read this article by CT:



That is one helluva article..


chiraq, um, now look, um, um,... here?s the thing: you remember your posts about you overanalyzing everything?

It is really simple at your stage: eat-lift-eat-sleep-repeat.

If you don?t believe me ask yourself: "what would prof X say?"

I am sure that you will we Hyyyooooge because you analyze EVERY FUCKING DETAIL but right now, is this really, um, necessary?

Try to get laid goddamnit. Sorry, my standard advice to everyone.


you're still going to gain strength if you train like a bodybuilder. Since you're young and gains will come fast you don't really have to worry about what's so optimal. The intricacies of weightlifting aren't something that you need to get caught up in. As long as you keep your volume up you'll continue gaining strength and size.


What's wrong with educating yourself regarding the sport and lifestyle you love?

Its not like I'm going to analyze and base my routine on a friggin wikipedia definition.

I was just curious.

Sorry about the rant.




I know you're curious, but I have told you the same thing. You have a tendency to stress over the most minute details...and I do mean STRESS. Without drugs, there is no way you will gain a ton of muscle mass without gaining strength that goes with it. That strength is what builds that muscle mass. I think some authors forget that when they write some articles you may find. Of course the guy who has only been training for two years but jumped on drugs and gained the majority of his bulk artificially may not be as strong as the guy who worked his ass off for 8 years to get big without help. One relied on his strength, genetics, food intake and overall training to get huge while the other had a huge boost artificially.


Thanx Prof.

Atleast there has been some helpful statements in this thread to clear those doubts.