Fast vs Slow Lifting Portion of the Lift for Mass

So which one works better for mass in ur experience?
Fast lifting and slow negative
Or slow lifting and slow negative?
Of course being explosive helps lifting more weight but it also means less time under tension…

Fast positive and fast negative.

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There’s some validity to this…

Short-term high- vs. low-velocity isokinetic lengthening training results in greater hypertrophy of the elbow flexors in young men​

higher velocity (3.66 rad/s) isokinetic lengthening contractions are associated with greater muscular hypertrophy than slower (0.35 rad/s) velocity lengthening contractions.

We observed, despite a >10-fold lower mean torque-time integral (Fig. 6), a greater degree of hypertrophy (Fig. 3) with a training protocol that involved only high velocity lengthening contractions.

Fiber type-specific changes after eccentric training

Not every type of eccentric training causes preferential increases in type II muscle fiber area, and some types actually cause type I muscle fiber area to increase more!

#2. Preferential type I muscle fiber hypertrophy

…when slow eccentric phases are used during normal strength training, this causes increased type I muscle fiber size,

Slowing down an eccentric does not enhancement or recruitment so it is not "eccentric overload". It only increases time under tension.

Research shows the slow negatives do not elicit the most effective response.

Slow Eccentrics For Growth? ​

Slow eccentrics for growth? - Dan Ogborn

Dan Osborne found that with eccentrics/negatives are…

  1. “…greater following high rather than slow velocity eccentric actions (29).”

  2. “…as far as strength was concerned, fast eccentric actions were superior.

  3. "…growth of type IIa and IIx fibres was greater with fast eccentric actions."

Negatives: You’re Doing Them Wrong​](Negatives: You're Doing Them Wrong)

As per Chris Thibaudeau

  1. …“going slower will not improve the stimulatory affect of the eccentric. …it won’t recruit and stimulate more fast-twitch fibers.”

  2. "The Essential Points: Focus on heavy and controlled, not on moderate weights lowered slowly."

Defining Fast Eccentric Time

A Fast Eccentric is defined as lowering the bar in approximately one (1) second. This innervate the Fast Twitch Muscle Fiber (“Super” Fast Type IIb/x and Fast Type IIa)

Oxymoron: Eccentric Contraction

This term is used by everyone, including researchers, which makes no sense.

Eccentric Definition: This is defined as a lengthening of the muscles in a movement; lowering the weight.

Concentric Definition: This is defined as a shortening of the muscles in a movement; the upward movement.

That makes Eccentric Contraction an oxymoron. The muscles in a movement cannot lengthen and shorten at the same time.

Kenny Croxdale

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They all work. Try them all, keep track of them all and beat all your records in every way of training.


I’ve never seen anyone worth their salt not advocate for fast concentrics.

I’d personally suggest slow eccentrics in order to milk the TUT part of the movement, BUT, I have seen people use a quick eccentric in order to get a fast ‘turnaround’ into the next rep, which can also be used to stimulate growth.

Ronnie Coleman used a “sloppy” repetition approach, but with this in mind, he might have been adhering to the quick/quick approach and never really thought about it.



To be fair, Ronnie probably could have curled gallons of milk and still look better than most. Some of the most insane genetics and strength known to man

And two of the greatest quotes in lifting history.

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Four if you count “BOOOO” and “woo…that was heavy”

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Im truly grateful he existed as a person. His lifting videos make regular appearances on the gym playlist and

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Fast Concentrics

There is a plethora of research on this topic and individual who advocate it; Dr Fred Hatfield and below Dr Greg Nuckols goes into it more in…

Speed kills: 2x the intended bar speed yields ~2x the bench press gains • Stronger by Science

(May 2014) study published in the European Journal of Sports Science

Approximately double the strength gains by lifting the bar with maximum speed each rep , as opposed to a slower cadence

  1. To produce more force, your body uses more muscle fibers (as opposed to each fiber just contracting harder to produce more force)

  2. The first fibers your body uses are the smallest, slow-twitch fibers . To produce more and more force , it recruits progressively larger and stronger fibers, with your largest, strongest fast twitch fibers being the last ones integrated into the movement. (This is called Henneman’s Size Principle )

  3. Recruiting these fibers isn’t based on the weight you’re using per se, but rather the amount of force you produce . Force = mass x acceleration, so all other things being equal, lifting a bar faster means you produced more force to lift it.

  4. Therefore, lifting the bar faster recruits more muscle fibers.

  5. The fast twitch muscle fibers – the last ones you recruit – are the ones most prone to hypertrophy , so lifting faster = more fast twitch fibers used = more strength and size gains.


24 men were recruited (4 dropped out), mostly in their early to mid 20s, and of normal height and weight (1.77 ± 0.08m, 70.9 ± 8.0kg). They were healthy and physically active, with 2-4 years “recreational” experience with the bench press. “Recreational” is a slippery term. Their 1rms averaged around 75kg to begin with – slightly more than 1x body weight. So it wasn’t the first time these guys had picked up a barbell, but they also weren’t elite athletes.


The subjects maxed at the beginning and end of the program to assess strength gains. Also, bar speed of all of their warmup sets was recorded (both groups were instructed to lift the bar as fast as they possibly could on all of their warmup sets) to see whether training fast or slow affected their force production capabilities.

They split the subjects into two groups. Half of them trained at max velocity (MaxV – controlled eccentric, and explosive concentric), and half of them trained at half velocity (HalfV – controlled eccentric, and 1/2 maximum bar speed for the concentric).

bar speed - TUT
In every single category, MaxV saw basically twice the gains of HalfV

Bar speed - strength and velocityNotice – right around 2x the gains across the board
Breaking is all down:

So, lifting the bar faster means more gains , and it makes you more explosive with lighter weights too?

lifting faster may produce superior gains in maximal strength.

The biggest takeaway is that being able to pick up heavier things makes it easier for you to move lighter things faster.

Getting stronge r DOES he lp you produce more power , but it’s not highly specific. Lifting heavy things has a much higher carryover for lifting heavy things fast than it does for lifting light things fast.

So will you be able to throw a shot put further by increasing your bench , or be able to jump higher by increasing you squat ?

Absolutely! To a point…

…actually recorded average velocities and concentric time under tension . TUT has been preached by some as a driving force in strength and hypertrophy gains.

However, the HalfV protocol had substantially more TUT than the MaxV protocol , but it produced substantially worse results . Perhaps TUT should be amended from “time under tension” to “time under maximal tension”how much time you spend actually moving the weight with as much force as possible .

… there is a time and place for controlled concentrics – learning.


moving the bar as fast as possible probably produces better gains than intentionally slowing your rep speed

Moving heavy things as fast as possible improves your ability to move heavy things fast much more than it improves your ability to move light things fast.

use bar speed as an indicator of your strength day-to-day. You can use this knowledge to adapt a percentage-based program to fluctuations in strength day-to-day and (hopefully) improvements in strength over time without having to max in the gym regularly.

Kenny Croxdale

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As per the information that I posted above from Chris Thibaudeau…

going slower will not improve the stimulatory affect of the eccentric. …it won’t recruit and stimulate more fast-twitch fibers .”

Additional information came to the same conclusion.

Kenny Croxdale

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So basically lifting fast and explosively and controlled negative has the best results

Read the research and come to your own conclusions.

Kenny Croxdale

If you really want mass you have to get to the point where you’re pushing the bar really fast but it’s moving really slowly.


I know I’ve mentioned before how much of an influence Hatfield’s Compensatory Acceleration Training (C.A.T.) had on my own progress. Seeing top competitors over the years exposing the same basic premises Hatfield did decades ago just reinforces my usual statement about how something doesn’t stop working because time has passed since it’s discovery or popularity.