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Slow Lifting

If you want to become very strong, you have to lift weights heavy enough to make your muscles burn. It doesn't make any difference whether you move the weights slowly or rapidly. Just exercise intensely enough so your muscles feel sore the next day. The soreness indicates that you have injured the fibers. When they heal, they will be stronger than before you injured them. But muscles heal only when you let them rest. If you put great pressure on a muscle that is already sore from a previous workout, it cannot heal and will tear. Then you are injured and will not be able to lift at all.

When you move very slowly with a weight, your muscles fatigue and weaken so that the weight feels much heavier than it is. Lifting a weight slowly causes the same muscle damage as lifting a heavier weight more quickly. One problem with slow lifting is that sports require fast movements and training is specific. You have to exercise against resistance moving fast to be able to use your muscle fast when hitting a baseball, throwing a half court pass in basketball and hitting someone in football. So slow lifting can make you strong, but it is not the best way to prepare you for fast-moving competitive sports such as tennis, ping pong, basketball and volleyball.

Weight lifting for middle age and beyond

Checked 10/1/18

May 12th, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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