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Static King

One of the best ways to improve your strength is by moving nothing at all.

If your goal is strength, putting a zero-movement strategy into your repertoire could be exactly what you need.

By way a review, a static contraction, also known as an isometric, is one which the muscular force equals the external resistance, producing no movement whatsoever. For example, you loaded up the barbell on the bench press with much more than your 1RM (one rep max) and began pressing against it with all your might, you would have a static contraction. Even if the bar didn’t budge, despite the lack of movement a ton of muscular activity would be going on inside the muscle.

Research confirms you can produce more force and strength statically than you can during positive contractions. How can this benefit you in terms of strength? You need to look no further than your nearest sticking point. A static-training plan can help you blast past those sticking points that usually act as roadblocks. The good news is that you can apply the technique to just about any exercise from the squats to overhead press even to bicep curls. Be warned, though: it is more difficult than it looks. Applying continual maximal effort without movement is brutal and effective.

Be Specific
One key factor to keep in mind is that, although strength increases are associated with static training, they are angle specific. When you train statically at a particular angle, you gain strength and size only at that angle. Take for instance the overhead press. If you worked statically at one particular point along the path of the ROM, you would gain strength there and nowhere else. The gain in strength is not necessarily distributed along the entire range of motion. For this reason, you need to apply static training at various places.

The Weak Link
So where do you start? Go straight to the weakest point of your range of motion, which is near the bottom of most exercises. If you are working on the bench press, set the safety bars to the sticking point and load up the bar. Forget about it being your “weakest point” and be sure to load more weight than you could normally move so that you are certain to have absolutely no movement. If you are working out at peak gym hours or you do not feel comfortable putting that much weight on the bar, you can work with and empty bar, but from underneath the safeties. Simply press the bar up into the safeties as hard as possible.

A couple of items to note: On your pressing movements be very careful not al allow your hands to slip. Using chalk during static training is a good idea, because if your hands slip, your wrists can sustain severe injury, second, for the pulling movements throw on some pulling straps to make sure your pulls are not hindered by your grip strength. If you do not wear straps, use chalk instead.

Adding a static day a couple of times a month into your routine across all bodyparts will help trigger serious strength gains. The better able you are to blast through sticking points, the more weight you will ultimately move during standard weight training sessions.

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Arm Work-out


Here is a workout which focuses on the arms. This workout will leave you with a pump.

Concentration Curls – 5-6 sets, 12 reps
Wide-Grip Barbell Curls – 5 sets, 12 reps
Hammer Curls – 5 sets, 12 reps
Standing Bent-Over Concentration Curls – 5 sets, 12 reps.

One-Arm Overhead Extension – 5-6 sets, 12 reps
Pressdown – 5 sets, 12 reps
One-Arm Pressdown – 5 sets, 12 reps
Rope Pressdown – 5 sets, 12-15 reps

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Wide-Grip Standing Barbell Curl

Wide-grip standing barbell curl

1) Stand up with your torso upright while holding a barbell at the wide outer handle. The palm of your hands should be facing forward. The elbows should be close to the torso. This will be your starting position.
2) While holding the upper arms stationary, curl the weights forward while contracting the biceps as you breathe out.
Tip: Only the forearms should move.
3) Continue the movement until your biceps are fully contracted and the bar is at shoulder level. Hold the contracted position for a second and squeeze the biceps hard.
4) Slowly begin to bring the bar back to starting position as your breathe in.
5) Repeat for repetitions.

1) You can also perform this movement using an EZ-bar or EZ-attachment hooked to a low pulley. This variation seems to really provide a good contraction at the top of the movement.
2) You may also use the closer grip for variety purposes.

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Standing Bent-Over Concentration Curls

1) Stand with feet in a wide staggered stance (one foot out in form of the other).
2) Bend at the waist keeping your back straight. You body should be leaning forwards and to the side that you are not lifting the dumbbell with (foot that is forward).
3) Keep your abs tight and head aligned with the spine, hold a dumbbell in your hand. Keep your arm hanging down with the other arm rested on top of your knee for added support.
4) Curl the dumbbell in a smooth arc to the top and then slowly return it to full-arm extension. Ensure that the elbow is positioned at the same point throughout the curl.

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Dumbbell Biceps Curls

Dumbbell Biceps CurlThe dumbbell bicep curls target the biceps brachii, which is located on the upper arm between the shoulder and the elbow. These are the muscles you rely on to hold heavy objects.

To perform the biceps curls follow these steps:
– Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand feet hip-width apart.
– Let your arms hang down at your sides with your palms forward.
– Pull your abdominals in, stand tall, and keep your knees slightly bent.
– Curl both arms upwards until they are in front of your shoulders.
– Slowly lower the dumbbells back down.

When doing this exercise always remember to:
– Keep your knees slightly bent and your posture tall. Don’t lean back or rock your body forward to help lift the weight.
– Keep your elbows as close to your body as you can without supporting your elbows on the sides of your stomach for leverage.
– Don’t rest when you get to the top or bottom of the exercise, instead keep a constant tension on the biceps.
– Lower the weight back to the starting position slowly and with control.