Here’s a useful piece of information I learned today from Jeff Cavaliere of Athlean-X:
To grow muscle, you want to put it under tension for about 45-60 seconds. That’s the sweet spot for growing muscle. That’s known as the time under tension (TUT) training.
That means you want to put strain on your muscle for 45-60 seconds per set. A lot of people are focused on the number of reps per set, and they typically do 12 reps per set.
Now 12 reps per set is a good rule IF each rep takes at least four seconds, because then you’re hitting 48 seconds (12*4 seconds=48 seconds), which is just in the TUT sweetspot for maximum muscle growth.
But a lot of people rush through their reps much faster than that. The problem with that? They don’t hit that 45-60 second window for a set to be effective at stimulating muscle growth.
Make Sure that when you’re doing this, that you spend most of the time in the “hard zone”—the part of the exercise that’s difficult and challenging (vs the part of the exercise that’s easy).
Try to spend twice the amount of time on the eccentric muscle contraction (that’s the part of the motion where you’re lengthening the muscle).
Now one thing that I’m not quite sure about yet is: why is it 45 TO 60 seconds? I mean, why cut it off at 60 seconds? Why not do longer than that? That’s an open question I yet have to figure out.
Anyway, here’s the video, which does a great job at demonstrating the principle: