Rep Tempos Science
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Some believe you need train explosively to maximize how many reps. Whereas others train with a slow rep tempo to increase time under tension. What's more beneficial? Swipe left for details on rep tempo science.
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When gaining muscle is the goal, a range of rep tempos work. A 2008 study compared a 2-second rep tempo with a 6-second rep tempo. That's 1 second up and 1 second down versus 3 seconds up and 3 seconds down. Muscle growth was the same between groups. A 2015 meta-analysis supports this. Rep tempos between 0.5-8 seconds result in similar muscle growth. As long as you have control over the weights you are lifting.
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But I would suggest avoiding the extremes. If your rep tempo is too fast, it's hard to keep control over the weights you are lifting. Whereas a very slow rep tempo might not challenge you since this forces you to decrease the weight. That's why rep tempos of 10+ seconds have been found to be less effective for gaining muscle. So maintain a rep tempo you are comfortable with and allows you to have control. For me, that's about a 1s concentric and 1-2s eccentric.
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Now, when gaining strength is the goal, the intent to have an explosive rep tempo makes sense. Force = mass * acceleration. So accelerating the bar as much as possible when you lift it up improves your potential to lift heavier weights. In a 2014 study, it was found that when you intend to raise the bar up as fast as possible, the participants experienced more bench press strength development.
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