T Nation

Powerlifting Neurology


I just started a series on Powerlifting Neurology. This is a link to the first installment. Let me know what you think.




thanks mods


Looks good so far, and I'm looking forward to your next post!


Interesting and educational. But as far as 'cns fatigue', I always thought that meant that neurotransmitters for the muscles are depleted.

Like when I do eccentricless oly lifts, I don't get sore at all, but I don't have my usual 'snap'. That bounce in my step is gone and so is my explosiveness. But if I do a bb style workout the next day, the workout is almost unaffected by the explosive workout, but explosiveness and strength goes down the tube.

I thought that's how the supplement sold here Power Drive works. By supplying the raw ingredients to make these neurotransmitters.

And thanks for the read. I enjoyed it.


I love reading stuff like this. Looking foward to the next.


Good article, Loftearmen. I share your exasperation over people babbling on things they don't understand. I've been in this business for many, many years and lost count of all the rumors, locker room stories, wishful thinking, sales pitches, you name it. By the time I started hearing "CNS fatigue", I knew it was yet another buzzword that was supposed to mean something but no one knew what. It's a wonder anyone can work out intelligently.


It would be very dangerous for your body to ever "run low" on acetylcholine because if you run out of it then your heart stops beating! Because of this, there is a nifty little metabolic cycle (your body has one for everything!) Acetylcholine that has already been used in the postsynaptic terminal of the neuromuscular junction is broken down by an enyme called acetylcholineesterase. It is broken down into acetone and choline which are then absorbed by the presynaptic terminal. The acetone and choline are then rejoined by a chemical called acetylcholinetransferase. This way you never run low on acetylcholine, regardless of what you've eaten. You would run out of ATP before you ran low on acetylcholine.


Very nice write up. I like your closing thoughts on 'cns fatigue.' I don't believe it is an actual occurance. I think it is more a shift in diposition from parasympathetic dominance before lifting to sympathetic dominance during/after lifting. I do think your 'broken key' analogy is a major factor in being in a sympathetic dominant state. Again, awesome write up.


This is the second installment of my series on Powerlifting Neurology. In this article I go over neuroplasticity and how it is affected your training. thepursuitofstrength.blogspot.com/2011/09/powerlifting-neurology-101-neurological.html


Favorited and downloaded! Thank you. :slight_smile:


thanks Loftearmen for your areticles.
The mental aspects of strength fascinate me as much as the physical.

also hope you eventually go into the neurology of psyching up for big lift, and neurological connection between the surge of strength you get when sexually aroused.


This makes so much sense.

So this is why the Westside guys (and most everyone) will change ME exercises often: in order to not clog the same spot, right?

And, this also means sleep is essential for CNS recovery. (ahem)

Great work. :slightly_smiling:


This is the last part of my series on powerlifting neurology. This is about the psychological and physiological action of smelling salts.



Great posts!

Also, I'm making one of your fiancee's recipes this weekend. That beef-wrapped asparagus looks amazing.


It IS amazing. We made it again last night without the asparagus and it was still awesome.