T Nation

Tips for Greater Mind-Muscle Connection/Control?

Recently I found a book tilted Body Control by the old-school strongman Maxick; and again this book proves to be another reason for my growing interest in old-school training methods. For those who haven’t read it (I recommend it) the book is about developing greater athletic performance via isometric contractions. The methods in this book are basically teaching greater mind muscle connection which unfortunately I’ve been struggling with and could use some advice, methods, or possibly hidden secrets for developing muscular control outside the normal tips of:

  • flexing in a mirror and after a set

  • using light weight or isometrics

  • watching the muscle work, and being patient…ect.

not to say these aren’t good tips, I actually already started applying them in past years there just seems to be some hidden barrier I can’t get over, this is a highly debated topic and using the techniques found in Muscle Control seem to be an almost forgotten method (un-found anywhere else but this book). So again any help is greatly appreciated.

This is an interesting thing. To analyze this barrier, it would be useful to know the following:

  1. what is your current bodyweight.
  2. what are your current best lifts (any lifts would be helpful, more is better)
  3. what, ultimately, is your goal regarding these lifts and your bodyweight.

If you feel you’re stuck, it would help us to know, essentially, where you are now and where you want to be. answering these 3 questions gets us that info.

1 Like

Poke your finger into the muscle and push it back by flexing that muscle. It gives you a direct visual and tactile feedback.

Also, look at some anatomy texts, pics, etc. to get an idea of the muscles direction and attachment points so that you can visualize how they actually work (contract).

Have you tried the stuff dude says to do in the book?

1 Like

Yeah can’t get passed exercise 1. Outta curiosity gave you read this book

@jackolee does a bit more of this type of stuff that me so tagging him in for comment. Also @The_Mighty_Stu probably has some helpful hints here.

1 Like

One thing that has worked for me in the past is to try to focus on moving the weight with the limb attached to the muscle rather than through the hands. So if you are doing an arm curl focus on moving the forearm towards the shoulder rather than the hand or bar up the the shoulder. It is like you are focusing on the bicep muscle pulling your forearm up. You may find it useful to loosen your grip on the bar or dumbell also. It is really trial and error with each movement until you learn to contract the muscle rather than lift the weight.

1 Like

Although it can help,y ou may be putting too much value into it.


I’d start with really light weights. Light enough where you can pretty effortlessly go through the motion and make adjustments to isolate the muscle. Once you are isolating pretty well then focus on a deep contraction at the peak of the lift and a slow stretch on the eccentric. Out of curiosity which lift are you starting with?

Pump work

I really think, before we advise someone on MMC when they might be not “there” yet - and by that I mean, if you don’t have some experience in the gym and don’t know proper lift mechanics, then focusing on MMC when you can’t even lift properly is going to throw EVERYTHING out of wack.

So, can we get an answer to @flipcollar’s questions?

1 Like

I took this more of a thread to discuss what works and what doesnt. but if the OP wants specific advice for him/herself then your point is very valid.

I will agree that Working with less than Maximal weights can have a big impact on feeling that connection.

Flexing in between sets helps as well, as will going through the ROM unilaterally focusing on what points of the extremes (stretch and peak contraction) you actually lose tension in the muscles.