Articles

Updated thoughts on optimizing hypertrophy training

The ever-evolving nature of science creates a never-ending obligation to reevaluate our prior training practices and recommendations against recent developments in the field. This obligation only increases when you write about these opinions publicly. Before we head into the Canada Day long weekend, I thought I’d take a quick look at a few recent studies […]

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Complex Analysis, Simple Solutions

In mid 2018, I had the opportunity to speak to an audience of strength coaches and athletic therapists regarding optimizing nutritional and exercise strategies to enhance connective tissue adaptations. One component of this talk was to highlight a relatively complex analysis of the Achilles tendon structure and how this work produced an ultimately simplistic exercise […]

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New approaches in connective tissue rehab

I was a physiologist by training before I was a physiotherapist. I spend more time now managing patients with connective tissue injuries than I do looking down a microscope, but I haven’t lost sight of the influence that these types of experiments can have. While I may no longer be at the “bench” (at least […]

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Does maximizing EMG amplitude mean more muscle growth?

Our understanding of the relationship of training intensity (or load) and hypertrophy has changed significantly within the past ten years. While early recommendations suggested loads in excess of 70%-1RM were required to promote, or maximize, muscle growth, a growing amount of data suggests that when training is completed to failure, comparable muscle growth can occur […]

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Does occlusion training mean more muscle?

I have to say I’ve long been intrigued by the use of occlusion training to promote muscle growth with low-intensity training. Occlusion training, otherwise known as blood flow restricted exercise, involves wearing an occlusive device, often a blood pressure cuff, tightly worn wrap, or commercially available device allowing for precise control of pressures, during the […]

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Does volume drive muscle hypertrophy?

We’ve literally rewritten the book on hypertrophy training in the past five years. A collection of studies has now shown that variations in training intensity [1-4], tempo [5] and rest intervals [4,6-9] impart little to no hypertrophic benefit over any of the other possible combinations. Consistent with that human desire to simplify everything, we tend […]

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A quick thought on statistical power

Whether you’re an allied health professional, strength coach, or personal trainer, there’s no hiding from the greater demand for evidence-informed practices. In an age where your clients come to you having spent hours online already trying to tackle their problem, they’re likely to end up on your door step with more questions, and likely expectations, […]

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More on eccentrics and drop set science

The end of 2013 was quiet here on the blog, but just wanted to put up a quick message to wish everyone a happy (belated) new year, and to share two links to some content I released towards the end of 2013. Drop set science A little while back Eric and Chris Martinez of the […]

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Slow eccentrics for growth?

After my recent post on the relationship of tempo to work and time under tension, I thought I’d take a look at the role of slow eccentric actions in hypertrophy training. In my research into tempo recommendations being offered around the net, the most common was to use slow eccentric tempos to maximize muscle growth. […]

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Tempo and hypertrophy

I’ve spent much of the last few months (and posts) thinking about the basic training variables that influence hypertrophy, namely how altering training intensity alters the hypertrophic results from training. The main idea of these posts was that, when taken to failure, light training loads (30%-1RM) can produce comparable hypertrophy to high intensity loads (80-90%-1RM). […]

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Dan Ogborn