There are many different types of exercise techniques. The objective is
to find a training method that is not only beneficial, but safe as well.
Regardless of which technique you select, remember to consider the
safety aspects. Recognize the following training principles for minimum
risk of injury.
Proper form on each exercise is one of the most
important factors in attaining maximum fitness results. Concentrate
during each repetition by moving slowly and smoothly in both the lifting
and lowering movements. Never sacrifice your form in an attempt to use
more weight or perform more repetitions. Always use as much weight as
you can, and always do as many repetitions as you can, in proper form.
Proper Exercise Principles
Select exercises that isolate and
work the largest muscle groups first, then proceed to the smaller muscle
groups. Example: hips, thighs, back, shoulders, chest, arms and neck.
Use only strength training equipment that is void of any
perceivable mechanical friction. Mechanical friction is most easily
detected by feeling for any "sticking", and/or listening for any noise
made by the machine, while the exercise is being performed. If a
suitable piece of equipment cannot be found, then substitute with the
equivalent free-weight or body-weight exercise.
one set of 2-4 exercises for the lower body, 4-6 exercises for the upper
body and no more than 10 exercises in any single workout.
Select a resistance on each exercise that allows you to do between 4-8
repetitions in smooth, steady form, through a full range of motion. If 4
repetitions cannot be performed properly, the resistance is too heavy.
If 8 or more repetitions can be performed properly, the weight is too
Accentuate the lifting portion of each repetition.
Lift the resistance or perform positive work slowly and smoothly to the
count of 10...pause in the most contracted position...lower the
resistance or perform negative work slowly and smoothly to a count of
10. Do not pause or lockout the joints in the most contracted position
of any compound (multiple joint) pressing exercise. Example: leg press,
chest press, overhead press.
Use as much of your range of
motion as possible on each exercise to develop full-range strength and
flexibility. Concentrate on flexibility by slowly contracting and
stretching during the first 3 repetitions.
Continue each exercise
until no additional repetitions are possible in good form. When 8 or
more repetitions are performed properly, increase the resistance by
approximately 5% at the next workout.
Move slower, never faster,
if in doubt about speed of movement. Do not ever sacrifice form for more
Breathe normally. Never hold your breath
while exercising. Keep your face and jaw relaxed, and never squeeze the
handgrips tightly. This results in elevated blood pressure and could be
Never exercise with a headache or illness.
Avoid exercises that compress the spine and/or position the head and
neck too far forward or backward.
Keep your body in a straight,
aligned manner. Avoid twisting or shifting your weight during the
It is preferable to exercise in an environment that is
cool and quiet.
Walk quickly from exercise to exercise.
The longer the rest between exercises the less effective the overall
In order to assure continued progress,
rest a minimum of 48 hours between successive workouts. Some advanced
subjects may need more than a week between successive workouts in order
to make progress. Monitor your exercise sessions closely, if progress
stops exercise less frequently.
Keep accurate records of
the date, resistance,
repetitions, and overall training time for each
Do not vary the workout often.
Usually, after several weeks of proper exercise, the
initial recommended repetition range (4-8) needs to be adjusted to
better serve the participants individual needs. Most people need to
spend less time under load (repetitions) while exercising, some people
may need to spend more, and still others may need no change at all.
Similarly, once the overall intensity of ones session becomes
appropriately high, the total number of exercises performed in a given
session, and the frequency of training should be adjusted to facilitate
Subsequent resistance increases should be very conservative (less than
Guidelines for Advanced Exercise Progression
Very soon after a person shows proficiency in a given exercise,
steps should be taken to refine that personís repetition range.
Resistance should be increased aggressively (more than 5-10%) from
session to session, until no more than six repetitions (60-90 seconds
under load) can be performed.
For the next several
sessions attempt to conservatively increase the resistance
(approximately 5-10%), attempting to increase the intensity of the
exercise to the point where four repetitions can be performed.
Generally, once a resistance has been found in an exercise, which allows
for thorough-inroad to occur between 3-5 repetitions (45-75 seconds
under load), further progression should occur in the form of continued
Some rare individuals may find that their repetition
range in a given exercise may need to be slightly higher in order to
facilitate continued strengthening. If this is truly the case, then
rarely, if ever, should that exercise exceed 8 repetitions (120 seconds
Under most normal circumstances, no more than 8
total exercises should be performed in any one session, but when the
overall intensity of the exercise session becomes appropriately high, it
often becomes necessary to reduce the total number of exercises
performed to as few as four, or less.
Be careful not to over
train. Provide for more recovery time as needed. At advanced levels, it
is often necessary to rest as long as 96 hours between sessions, but it
is not uncommon to need as much as a week, or longer, in order to
progress. Monitor sessions closely.
Medx Rehabilitative Exercise and Fitness
Tel: Office 732-671-1430 Cell 917-701-6066