Mind-Muscle Connection

Mind-Muscle Connection

The Mind-Muscle Connection refers to the feeling you get from a muscle working during an exercise. The thought behind it being that, due to movement be controlled by the brain, the more you can focus on contracting the working muscle, the more of a stimulus you will provide it with. Whereas some see this as essential, others view it as “bro science” and unnecessary providing you lift heavy. So who is right?

The mind-muscle connection has been given a bad name in the past by those who take manipulating tempos to the extreme in order to soley focus on squeezing the working muscle at the expense of load. This often leads to good form and ensures the desired muscle is working but massively limits the tension on the muscle due to the reduced resistance used.

On the other hand, those who turn their noses up at the mind-muscle connection are often only concerned with moving the weight from A to B. By focussing only on completing reps, with no regard to which muscles are moving the weight, it is easy to allow other muscles to aid in completing the movement.

In the end, somewhere in the middle of these two is where you want to be. It is important that you can feel the target muscle working during a set and getting a pump is a good sign of this, but this should not significantly take away from the loads you are able to use.

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Ed Pilkington

Ed Pilkington is an RNT body transformation coach currently based in Belfast. Ed combines the experience he has accumulated from years of training clients on the gym floor, with his scientific knowledge gained through degrees in Sport Coaching and Strength and Conditioning, to provide his clients with dramatic changes to their bodies and lifestyles.