NCSF Personal Training Study Guide Chapter 13 – Anaerobic Resistance Training 5

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Chapter Goals:

  • Find the positive adaptations and benefits that come with resistance training.
  • Find training goals for general fitness, aerobic endurance, hypertrophy, and strength training phases.
  • Understand the training guidelines for improving aerobic endurance, hypertrophy, and strength power.
  • Be able to tell the difference between plyometric and ballistic exercises.

Anaerobic Resistance Training

The Role of Anaerobic Resistance Training

This training style gives a significant number of health and life quality benefits.

The aerobic training style mostly deals with lifespan and cardiorespiratory health, while anaerobic training has more to do with the functional aspects of the body.

A general list of the positive adaptation and benefits of resistance training.

  • Nerve – things like improved recruitment, synchronicity, responsiveness, and firing rate.
  • Muscle – things like fat-free mass maintenance, hypertrophy, and improved quality of tissues.
  • Connective tissue, including bone – things like increased strength and mass, bone mineral density enhancements, and improved tissue quality.
  • Cardiovascular system – improved metabolism efficiency, increased capillary density, stroke volume, and vascular health.
  • Metabolic system – things like cell efficiency improvements, byproduct management, and mitochondria proliferation.
  • Endocrine system – improvements in insulin sensitivity, greater anabolic affinity, and attenuated catabolic activity.

Resistance training plays a great role in the assistance with musculoskeletal health across the lifespan.

Without adequate loading over time, the neural, muscular, and skeletal systems all decline due to aging and increase the risk of musculoskeletal disease.

For older age individuals, resistance training will prevent the onset of age-associated sarcopenia, which is the loss of muscle after age 30.

The same can be said for resistance training and bone density. Whether it is a person with a deficiency in the optimal bone building minerals or someone suffering from osteoporosis due to aging, resistance training can significantly prevent bone problems.

All weight bearing activity helps with the fight against bone mineral density problems, and resistance training is the use of load throughout the workouts.

Two major related resistance training changes are improved body composition and insulin sensitivity. These two works to help control one’s weight and decrease the risk for inflammation and metabolic syndrome.

The greatest effects on the body’s composition have been shown to come when a person combines aerobic exercise, resistance training, and control of calories.

Insulin resistance was an important note, as this is a main effect in the pathophysiology of obesity-related disorders like type 2 diabetes.

Resistance training helps improve the range of motion and economy of body movement.

For example, the running economy was improved by 8% in trained distance runners when they introduced resistance training.

Running economy is the energy demand for given velocities of Submax running.

Resistance training is shown to improve quality of life and function. Adequate levels of strength and power correlate strongly with functional independence later in life; resistance training is a surefire way to ensure this.

Resistance training helps greatly with activities of daily life.

Training for a Desired Outcome

Anaerobic training must be more detail-oriented than aerobic training plans to ensure they attain the specific and desired outcomes.

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The general goals of resistance training will fall under these adaptations:

  • Function or physical readiness
  • Anaerobic endurance
  • Hypertrophy
  • Strength
  • Power

These resistance training goals are somewhat for which they will be trained.

Function or physical readiness is the first thing to train for in programs, as movement competence must be established properly to set major fitness goals.

Anaerobic endurance is the second step in training. It is done after the person has established proper health of the musculoskeletal systems, and this progresses by adding movement competence and repeatability.

Hypertrophy is generally the third training goal, and it has the body increasing the size of muscles after it has focused on anaerobic endurance.

Strength training is the fourth goal, focusing on the max force muscles can produce in a single effort.

Power is the final goal of training and not everyone gets to this level as it is quite advanced. This emphasizes ballistic and plyometric exercises.

General Fitness Training – Physical Readiness

The emphasis here is on laying the foundations that will improve performance later.

The goals for this phase of fitness training are movement competence or biomechanical foundations, proper activation of the muscles during movements, and improvements in central stability, peripheral stability, and range of motion.

The general fitness training guidelines for this fitness training goal are:

  • Intensity = 50 – 70% 1RM
  • Frequency = 3 – 5 times per week
  • Volume = 30 – 36 sets per day
  • Mode = multiple modalities
  • Reps = 8 – 20
  • Rest interval = 30 – 60 seconds
  • Endocrine = limited growth hormone, testosterone, adrenal hormones

Anaerobic Endurance Training

The definition of this goal implies that the rate of force decline will determine a muscle’s ability to perform longer duration work at a sustained level.

There are several baseline factors:

  • Exposure to longer durations of resistive stress
  • Central and peripheral stability
  • The muscle’s absolute strength
  • Neural efficiency
  • Aerobic capacity
  • Anaerobic energy-system efficiency

The guidelines for anaerobic endurance training are:

  • Intensity = 50 – 70% 1RM
  • Frequency = 3 – 5 times per week
  • Mode = multiple modalities
  • Volume = 30 – 45 sets per day
  • Reps = 12 – 25
  • Rest interval = short as tolerated
  • Endocrine = minimal growth hormone, epinephrine

Hypertrophy Training

This is used for the increase of muscle mass. Many people will focus strictly on aesthetic purposes, but it can also be utilized to manage the disease and musculoskeletal health.

There is an even more intense focus on optimizing body composition, as the metabolism is positively affected by changes in lean mass.

The goals of hypertrophy training are promoting protein synthesis, increasing loading ability from moderate to heavy, optimizing total muscle balance, improving endocrine adaptations, and enhancing the glycolytic pathway.

The guidelines for hypertrophy training are:

  • Intensity = 70 – 85% of 1RM
  • Frequency = 4 – 6 times per week
  • Volume = high, around 30 – 40 sets per day
  • Mode = both compound and isolated lifts
  • Reps = 8 – 12 or 8 – 10 for high anabolic lifts
  • Rest interval = 30 – 60 seconds and up to 90 seconds
  • Endocrine = testosterone, growth hormone, cortisol, epinephrine, and IGF-1

Compound movement can be emphasized, which involves using two or more joints and recruiting large amounts of muscle mass across several muscle groups.

Strength Training

Muscular strength is the ability to produce the maximal force of contraction. In more free-moving conditions, strength is really the ability to accomplish tasks against different types of resistance.

Some important definitions are:

Force couples are the synergistic actions of opposing or adjacent muscles to produce a rotational action.

The kinetic chain is the term that refers to relationships between adjacent body segments whereby movement at one joint affects movement at another.

Central-peripheral stability is the ability to recruit a pattern of necessary musculature to maintain structural integrity.

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The main goals of strength training are the maximization of multi-joint loading ability, increasing the total force output, enhancing the central-peripheral stability, improvement in proficiency of the kinetic chain, and improving the proficiency of the nervous system.

The general guidelines of strength training are:

  • Intensity = 75 – 95% of 1RM
  • Frequency = 3 – 5 times a week
  • Volume = low, around 18 – 30 sets per day
  • Mode = cross joint lifts
  • Reps = 3 – 5 or 6 – 10, depending on the goals
  • Rest interval = glycogen 60 – 90 sec, phosphagen 2 – 5 min
  • Endocrine = growth hormone and testosterone

Power Training

Training power differs from hypertrophy and strength, as the greatest difference is the rate of movement.

Power training is going to rely on ballistic actions for the generation of large amounts of force.

Plyometrics is a method of training where there are rapid lengthening and contractions of the muscle for the distinct purpose of increasing power. This denotes an amortization phase of approximately 0.3 seconds or less.

Ballistics are actions that show max concentric acceleration over brief contraction times.

The amortization phase is known as the transition phase between the concentric and eccentric phases. The stretch-shortening cycle is emphasized for enhancement of the concentric action.

The main goals of power training are increasing the fast-twitch fiber recruitment and firing, improving the force coupling, enhancing movement economy, developing optimal acceleration and deceleration balance, and improving the reactive stability of both central and peripheral systems.

The general guidelines of power training are:

  • Intensity = 30 – 50% 1RM for glycolytic, 60 – 95% for phosphagen system
  • Frequency = 2 – 4 times per week
  • Volume = varied based on the activity
  • Mode = Olympic lifts, ballistics, plyometrics
  • Reps = 2 – 5 CP, 8 – 20 glycolytic
  • Rest interval = 30 – 240 seconds
  • Endocrine = growth hormone, testosterone, epinephrine

Training Systems

These are the methods used for strategic exploitation of the various categories of stress for emphasizing specific movements in strength, power, hypertrophy, or metabolic efficiency.

The popular training systems are:

  • Priority
  • Pyramid
  • Superset
  • Contrast
  • Complex
  • Drop set
  • Circuit
  • Lactate tolerance
  • Negative set

A priority system is a logic-based approach to training. It suggests the performance of exercises for the deficient muscle groups at the start of the session so that you can ensure they get the required attention.

The pyramid system was started by bodybuilders and used for muscle hypertrophy to cover a range of stimuli. The weight increases and then decreases, while the reps do the opposite.

The superset system is very effective for multiple training goals. The general concept is to perform one set of an exercise and then immediately follow it with another, with the only rest coming from the transition to another exercise.

The contrast system is like the superset system, but it has the exercise start with something like near max loads and then follow it with low loads at high speed. It is some form of this style of contrasting movements.

The complex system refers to movements done together that focus on one aspect, like a bar. The person performs specific exercises with the bar, not leaving the hands.

Drop sets are another hypertrophy technique that increases demands on muscle groups. This has the person performing the exercise to max reps and then dropping the weight and continuing with the exercise until they max and do it again.

The circuit system involves 12 – 15 exercises done in a time period or rep range before moving to the next.

The lactate tolerance system is a twist of the circuit training system and it has all reps done of the exercises in the shortest amount of time.

The negative set system focuses on the body’s ability to produce force in the eccentric part of the movement.

Exercise Considerations

Concurrent training, age, and gender all influence how someone will respond to exercise.

Overtraining is something to look out for. This is when someone exercises too much or too often, leading to serious health issues.

Overreaching is a subset of this. This is when someone has a short-term detriment due to added training stresses that take days or weeks to restore.

Detraining is the process of the adaptations from training being reversed due to lessened stress levels over time.

Detraining from stopping resistance training causes these things:

  • A reduction in muscle mass and fiber size
  • Increased capillary and mitochondrial density
  • Increased body fat percentage
  • Increased aerobic enzyme with concurrent reductions in anaerobic-enzyme concentration
  • Loss of muscle strength, power, and endurance
  • A reduction in neuromuscular efficiency

The reversibility principle says that any adaptation that results from training will be gradually reversed when training has stopped.

Common Injuries Associated with Training

Muscle strains are the stretching and/or tearing of muscles or their tendons. This can be caused by things like:

Placement of deconditioned muscle groups under high stress

Lack of an adequate warm-up

Lifting heavy objects

Unstable joint segments during exertion

Exertion in an unfamiliar position

Overstretched tissue

Poor lifting mechanics

Muscle imbalances

A first-degree strain causes pain and discomfort and heals in about 6 weeks.

A second-degree strain involves more significant damage and increased pain and tenderness. These injuries heal in several weeks or months with lots of variances.

Third-degree strains are known as complete tears. These have some significant trauma and very likely result in need for surgery and repair of the muscle.

PRICE is a good rule for these strains and sprains.

  • Protection
  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression
  • Elevation

Ligament sprains are stretching and/or tearing of ligaments.

Ligaments and other tissues are predisposed to injury due to reasons such as:

  • Lack of flexibility
  • General deconditioning
  • Too much stress
  • Muscle imbalances
  • Overstretched tissue
  • Overuse, particularly from biomechanically compromised movements

Shoulder impingement syndrome is a condition of the glenohumeral joint where repetitive motion is likely one of the leading causes.

Rotator cuff injuries are injuries to any of the four muscles of the rotator cuff, which are vulnerable due to the joint being the most mobile in the body.

Tendonitis is an acute inflammation of the tendons which happens due to repetitive overuse or excessive strains from trauma.

Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

Tyler Read


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