Hi Friends of Oompf, it’s Alvan here. Today, we will talk about the next component of Physical Fitness: Muscular Strength.
Muscular strength relates to your ability to move and lift objects. It’s measured by how much force you can exert and how much weight you can lift for a short period of time.
Muscular strength vs endurance
A lot of people do get confused between strength and endurance of muscles. They are similar in many ways however; there are some key differences to take note of.
Muscular strength is determined by how much force you can exert or how much weight you can lift. Building muscular strength uses heavier weights for fewer repetitions.
Muscular endurance refers to the ability of a muscle to do repetitions against resistance for an extended period of time.
Importance of Muscular Strength
These are some of the benefits of having a strong body which I believe some of you are already experiencing with your training:
- It allows you to perform movements and activities that require power without getting fatigued.
- It helps you to maintain a healthy body weight by burning calories and enhancing your body composition.
- It may also boost mood and energy levels and promote healthy sleep patterns. This may boost confidence by provide a sense of accomplishment. Furthermore, it allows you to add more complex and strenuous exercises to your fitness routine.
- It helps to build strong, healthier muscles and bones thus increasing bone density. As a result, it helps to develop good postural habits.
- You’ll have more stability and balance, thus lessening the risk of injuries and accidents.
How is it measured?
The one-repetition maximum (1RM) test is the standard test used to measure muscle strength. During a 1RM test, an exerciser performs one repetition of a single exercise to see how much weight he or she can lift using correct lifting technique. There is a protocol to conduct this test.
How to do the 1RM Test
Before measuring your 1RM (usually for back squat, bench press or deadlift), perform a few warm-up sets of the exercise to get the muscle ready. The warm-up is time-consuming, but it is essential to prevent injuries from occurring.
Allow yourself to rest the relevant muscles twenty-four hours before performing a 1RM test.
Finally, always use a spotter. Even with a proper warm-up, the risk of injury is high because of the heavy weight.
How to improve?
The best way to build muscle strength is resistance training.
Strength training improves both the size of your muscle fibres and the ability of your nerves to communicate with the muscles, also known as mind-muscle connection. Not only do your muscles get bigger with time, they also become more coordinated and better able to perform movements that require strength. The more repetitions you perform, the better you will be.
It also increases muscle definition but is highly dependable on your body fat percentage. If your muscles get bigger but you still carry too much fat, you may not see the muscular definitions. To improve both muscle definition and muscular strength you need to also watch your dietary intake by having a nutritional program to cater to your body and goals.
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