A Christian Guide to Body Stewardship, Diet and Exercise

Chapter 6: Training for Strength 126 Structural exercise is a movement that either directly or indirectly loads the spine. Examples of a structural exercise include the back squat, standing overhead press and deadlift. Compression exercise is a movement that directly loads the spine thereby causing compression of the intervertebral discs. Examples of a structural exercise include back squat, shoulder-loaded calf raises and standing overhead press. Traction exercise is a movement in which the range of motion unloads the spine by expanding the space between the intervertebral discs. Examples of a traction exercise include the belt squat, lying leg curl and lat pull-down. It is recommended that individuals with low back pain or injury perform more traction exercises, as compared to compression exercises, whenever possible. Tempo refers to the pace or rhythm at which a movement is performed. Table 6.2 provide tempo recommendations based on different strength training goals (ACEFitness.org, 2014). Table 6.2. Tempo Recommendations Training Goal Concentric Phase (sec.) Eccentric Phase (sec.) Endurance 1-2 2-6+ Size 1-2 2-4 Strength 1-2 1-2 Power Explosive Explosive Time under tension (TUT) refers to how long the muscle is under strain during a set. For maximal hypertrophy (increase in muscle size), it is recommended to use lighter weights with a TUT of between 45 - 60 seconds. Deload is a short pre-planned period of recovery built into an exercise regime in which both exercise intensity and volume are purposely reduced. A typical deload period is scheduled every 3-6 weeks and lasts for a week. General physical preparedness (GPP) refers to any training method used to improve general conditioning such as strength, power, endurance, speed and flexibility. GPP is meant to lay the foundation for SPP and, according to Simmons (2007), roughly 80% of your overall training should come by way of GPP. Specific physical preparedness (SPP), also referred to as sports-specific physical preparedness, refers to training of specific movements in a specified activity, usually a sport. For example, in the sport of powerlifting, this would entail training the bench press, squat and deadlift. According to Simmons (2007), roughly 20% of your overall training should come by way of SPP.