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Eccentric Isometrics - Best Way to Lift?

Happy thanksgiving coach.

There’s a lifting style (eccentric isometric) that is quite interesting. I think an article was written on T-nation about it as the best lifting style for strength/physique gains. On top of propioception, postural & other benefits (basically makes your body bullet proof and no need for soft tissue work).

Basically 3-5 second eccentric, pause 1-3 seconds in isometric at bottom of movment and explode up. Usually done in reps of 1-5 on major movements/compound lifts.

I’ve experimented with this and quite like it. Wonder where it fits on the neurotype scale and also as a mainstay way of performing reps (over 80% of workouts/routine using this).

We usually hear eccentrics causing MORE damage and CNS/recovery issues but ECIs apparently improve recovery, can be trained more frequently and primes body for strength/growth.

It’s quite different from the “perfect rep” back in the day as well (fast but controlled eccentric, mini drop at turnaround point and violent execution).

Could these be combined in a workout over the long term? Who would it be suitable for and maybe use in some of your programs??

Basically exactly like the mTOR reps I’ve talked about

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Sure, I use that style,along with the perfect rep style in most plans I use with athletes. In fact when training atlhetes I use many different contraction types because I use eccentric emphasis sets, isometric emphasis sets and concentric emphasis sets.

But none of them are the “best” way. Depending on the type of reps you will emphasize different growth mechanisms but decrease others.

I don’t know if this is the same thing, but I used to do this as a finisher:

Slow, slow eccentric push ups, with normal speed up. Do for 1 min, and you shouldn’t get more than 8.

After 1 min of those, hold a plank for 1 min.

After that min is up, do max set of pretty fast push ups.

I got this type of scheme from Convict Conditioning years back, where you do: very slow reps, then a hold, then a fast explosive movement.

Other combos:

  1. goblet squat to a wall squat to jump squats
  2. slow crunches to boat hold to fast bicycles

I used to have more, but can’t think of them now.

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That will work mostly because of the long time under tension which will create muscle fiber fatigue, lactate accumulation (which is anabolic in itself) and local growth factors release due to both the lactic acid accumulation and reduction of oxygen entry into the muscles.The combo is not magical but it will work.

Gotcha great ideas. Your mtor reps though are higher rep and usually done towards the end of a layer/ ramp ccyle. Or pump out and end with that stretch.

Seedman’s using it in the beginning, saying it activates everything and builds lots of muscle

Just curious cause when I do 5x5 I always do them fairly “normal”, fast eccentric / violent concentric, usually lockout and make sure technique good.

I did a full body workout today (strength circuit/pairs) ramping up in 3-8 rep range using ECI. Felt very good and stable. Less adrenaline, more focus


Here was the article I was thinking. Coach are you still performing most (80%+) of your compound lift reps this way?

Perfect rep orginally was about a fast but controlled eccentric and violent snap around at turnaround. Now it’s 3/4 slow eccentric followed by 1/4 drop & explode?

The turnaround point does lots of muscle damage, some folks find this a fast way to tendon/muscle snaps as well.

Can this rep style work with higher rep ranges 8-20+? Less intended for older/seasoned lifters?

Thank you