T Nation

The Double Pop + Feel the Burn


#1

Since the forum has been kinda quiet lately, I might as well start a thread.

I've always had trouble feeling my calves and traps, until I recently incorporated the double pop technique where i squeeze my muscle twice for maximum contraction, and I am finally starting to feel the muscle groups contracting a lot better.

So do you guys have any muscle groups that you have a hard time feeling? any tips on how to work a particular muscle group to make them BURN? For example I like doing barbell curls leaning against a wall so I can force my bicep to move the weight, and minimize any kind of swinging.


#2

I had to negate BB curls altogether because they sucked in so many ways - not feeling them in biceps, DOMINATED my wrists, just not a very good exercise for me.

I can't say at this point there's any body part I have a tough time isolating. Those "double pop" (or pump) are definitely great techniques to do with both of these.

In addition, when working calves, I believe those who have tough time making them grow need to approach them two different ways. First, do DC-calf training. Pick a weight that you can only complete 12 reps with; hold the contraction for 5 seconds, then fully stretch your calves for 15 seconds. Rinse, repeat. Much harder than it sounds, though... and these are generally best done with seated/standing raises.

Then, you should start doing your high-rep foo-foo work. Why I call this "foo-foo" work is because I see a million guys who go into the gym, load up a calf machine with about as much weight as possible, and these interesting little knee bounces, it looks like. Even guys with great physiques seem to train their calves like dumbasses sometimes. These should be with moderate-heavy weight, but make sure you're still forcing the contraction and lifting with control - but these shouldn't be as heavy as the DC training.

Also, for whatever it's worth, in the second exercise I feel like it's integral to try focusing on the soleus throughout. People will tell this is bullshit and they're wrong, it can be done.


#3

Generally
- Lower the load
- One and a half reps, e.g. close grip bench press, lower halfway then press again
- practice contracting the muscle during the day
- slow down the negatives

Vertical pulling lead with the elbows not the arms


#4

Man if you can't hit your calves, practice walkin on your toes like a dancer. you'll feel the burn in no time, transfer that to the gym and your set.


#5

I don't agree with any of those points.


#6

A 2nd calve exercise wouldnt be needed tough...


#7

Right, but I meant this for people who really think they can't make them grow. A lot of times they want to take calves to extremes, but won't try one of the simplest things to make them get big and strong.


#8

Agreed.

Altough I think most of the time the biggest problem with these people is ... patience.

They make some adjustments, dont see HOLY HELL OH SO DRAMATIC RESULTS in a month and than decide the adjustment does not work.


#9

I don't care.


#10

I used to train calves on a day of there own, but yesterday was my day of squats, rdls, and split squats, and while resting between a set I flexed my calves and noticed how easy it was to make them cramp. For some reason doing calves after my main leg exercises, they were much easier to contract and "feel" than when doing them on a day of there own.


#11

That's why you're having a difficult time feeling the work. Your 'double contaction' technique is a fine temporary work-around, but eventually developing a proper mind/muscle connection will be required.


#12

Lowering the load, slowing down the negative and contracting the muscle during the day are all great techniques for establishing a strong MMC. I haven't done the half rep thing so I can't comment on that.


#13

I don't mean it in a disrespectful way and thanks for your input.