T Nation

Perfect-Rep, is this Method Incomplete?


I was thinking about it.
Of course, I agree that "lifting as fast as possible" during concentric phase is way better for strength than the non-natural "slow tempo". But what about "no tempo" at all, with no reps counting?
I've read people complaining that "lifting as fast as possible" bypass the stabilizer who aren't really trained during the process. On the other hand, training deliberately slow is bullshit in a athletic point of view. but what about "no tempo"?

Try this experiment:

Take a smallish weight (2kg) in your hand, then put it in the clean position, ready to press it overhead.
Now, I want you to press it, without thinking about doing it slow or/fast, and without counting reps, just do the movement again and again with empty mind, press it up, go down, press it up, go down, press ...
What you will realize is that after some reps, your movement will start to be faster on the concentric phase, without thinking about it. And the more you continue, the more you reps are going to be explosive and totally explosive after some more reps, although you had no intent to do it this way.

What's happening there?

Does it mean that the body starts by using type I fiber and stabilizers at the beginning, then start to use explosive movement (in a efficient/natural way because it uses less energy with momentum) faster and faster, as if the nervous system is now "allowing you" to move the weight faster because it feels safe after some slower reps and stabilizer/kinesthesic feedback?

Movement that aren't fully explosive are still usefull strength-wise:
-Sometimes you need to lift something as fast as possible (think about throwing something/someone/ a dwarf..)
-Sometimes you need to have strength in slower movement wich use more stabilisation (think about lifting a big box to put it slowly on a high shelf, without touching other objects on the shelf because they could fall. or think about real life movement where you have to stop the movement without completing the rep, half-amplitude movements)

I might be wrong, but training this way seems to have the best of the two methods and train the full spectrum of force, you work the stabilizers/slow fiber first, then you get to the type-II fiber and explosive movement.
And it's really easy/natural to do, you basically lift with empty mind, without counting reps, and without any tempo up and down. You just repeat a movement like a retard.

What do you think about it?


I think

I don't think you'll get any mindblowing results with this method, but feel free to try it. Just lifting heavy weights for a few years and getting strong will also give you the "whole spectrum of force". Probably better and faster than your proposed method...


That was an useless answer.
Anyone with a real interest in the subject?


If you can lift 400 lbs fast you can lift a box at any speed.




There's a big difference between tempo and rep counting. Counting reps is simply a means of measuring set volume, whereas tempo is rep TUT.

I feel that lifting tempo doesn't change much at all (unless momentum/bouncing is used). Lift as forcefully as possible without using momentum; you'll not be able to lift this load much slower without lowering the amount of load or reps.

So to me, this answers the question of whether to time your tempo - it's pointless; you'll not be able to get more TUT unless you get stronger. If you deliberately slow down the reps, you won't manage as many reps (but the TUT will probably be the same unless you got stronger/weaker).

Slowing down the tempo (not timing the set/counting reps) doesn't target different muscle fibres IMO...it just makes it harder to track progress.

TUT is what counts the most when targeting different muscle fibres. And the easiest way of tracking this is reps/set (asuming you aren't deliberately focussing on slowing down the reps)...it's all pretty natural (you'll slow down towards the end of a set).


Now what happens when you don't use a 2kg weight? Wouldn't that throw off the entire idea of 'natural' tempo if the resistance was actually worth a damn?

The increase in speed on the later reps you noted is either unlikely or impossible with a substantial load.

Wouldn't warm-up reps, or just the preceding set, do the exact same thing?


Exactly; that just blew this whole thread out of the water.


and eventually you burn out and go slower? also, you get in a groove and your mind is now prepared to lift this weight. if you want, check out pavel tsaltoony(the kettlebell guy, dragondoor.com). he has stuff about slow reps, grinding and all that.