hey dankid thanks for the post. so regardless of his thought on rep speed his principal on this is basically a TUT “theory”? Not to make this an issue but how does this theory make CW right and all of the slow eccentric advocates “wrong” (for lack of a better word)?
the why is fast better than slow part is still what Im confused about.
And I agree i hope his book comes out soon haha![/quote]
I dont think its a matter of who is right and who is wrong, or one method being better than the other. I think CW is really just stating the obvious about MU recruitment. If a muscle fiber is not recruited, then there is absolutely no chance that it will grow. I dont think he relates this at all to TUT though. Without monitoring TUT, you may get good results, but you might not. Thats why I think its necessary at bare minimum to pay attention to it.
Im tired of people saying that lowering a weight slowly is more challenging than lowering it quickly. This statement just shows a lack of understanding of physics as well as physiology. We could start a huge debate about this one, but heres my basic reasoning for my beliefs.
1.) Most people are quite a bit stronger during the eccentric portion of the lift. Ive heard 20% stronger or even more.
So if your max is 100lbs, and your doing a set of 10 with 75lbs, this is 75% of your concentric max, but only 62% of your eccentric max.
2.) The faster the weight is moving downward, the more force there is required to reverse its movement.
This is a tricky one, and it makes a big difference. Although more force is required, a lot of that force is produced by the stretch reflex mechanism. This can be beneficial or detrimental to muscle growth depending on the lift, and your biomechanics. So the point is that you need to at least part of the time build some starting strength by doing concentric only work, pausing in the stretched portion, and rack work.
With all that said, if you are just concerned with muscle size and not performance at all, then you could pretty easily argue against fast lifting. It would come down to the fact that there is more than one way to skin a cat, and a matter of preference to the different methods.
3.) A lot of people make an innacurate comparison of fast vs. slow eccentrics by stating this. “Do a set of 10 reps as fast as possible, and then do a set with slow eccentrics. I guarantee that the slow set is harder.” This is idiotic, because the TUT is not taken into account. The fast set might last 5-10 seconds, and the slow set might last 30-40. Obviously its harder. But now try the same thing, but instead of counting reps, do fast reps for 30 seconds, and compare that to the same weight, but slow eccentrics for the same time. I can guarantee you that the fast sets will be way more challenging.
When I started to realize this concept I saw that TUT was a much more important factor than people now give it. The simple fact is this. If you want to get stronger without getting bigger, keep the total TUT, and TUT/minute low. If you want to get big, do the opposite.
This also lead me to not only monitoring TUT, but work:rest ratios. For pure strength, a work to rest ratio of 1:4 all the way up to 1:8 or more is ideal. And if your concerned with size, anywhere from 2:1 all the way to 1:2 maybe 1:3 is ideal.
I’ll admit that I make things more complicated than they need to be, and I get criticized a lot for it, but im more concerned with understanding how the different principles work, than just knowing what works. I think this is a big problem in the industry, and people need to start bridging the gap. Theres one group of people that know what works, but not why. And theres another group that knows what science says, but not how that applies to real life.
Other than everything ive said above, I think it just comes down to what I said about more than one way to achieve results. If there wasn’t multiple programs and methods that worked well, then we would be able to come up with “the perfect program”. But there isn’t, and instead these little debates sprout up everywhere.
***Oh and on a side note, even science is often conflicting. I recently read an article that stated fast eccentrics cause more muscle damage than slow eccentrics. I also read one that suggested fast eccentrics AND slow eccentrics were optimal for growth.