Believe it or not, all athletes do not necessarily want to have massive muscles. Think, for example, of wrestlers, MMA fighters, gymnasts or athletes who use their body weight as primary resistance. They all need strength. However, the extra volume could be more annoying than anything else.

What is important to consider is that strength is not only a property of muscle, but also a property of the motor system. So, seeking congestion, total muscle exhaustion and complete annihilation is not what these athletes are looking for.

Use the methods below to increase your strength, but not your volume.

Lift off the heavy

Raising heavy loads (greater than 90% of your 1WD ) will improve your strength by recruiting motor units with a very high threshold. The muscle fibers associated with these motor units have the best potential for increasing strength. However, they get tired quickly. This technique is more effective with compound exercises like performing a squat, deadlift, leg exercises, thigh press and bench press . Even if the weight is very heavy, your intention should be to lift it as quickly as possible. This will ensure that you recruit as much muscle fiber as possible.

Push explosively

Fast lifts are an excellent technique for developing power. Loads around 60% of 1RM should be used and moved as quickly as possible. Chains or bands can be used to further increase the acceleration challenge. Obvious explosive exercises include, for example, Olympic lifts (Power Clean and Jerk / Snatch), medicine ball throws and kettlebell swings.

The Shoulder-thrown, or Clean & Jerk English, is a complete and ideal movement to boost strength and power.

Practice in plyometrics

Plyometric training includes rebounds that develop what is called the Stretch Shortening Cycle (SSC) or stretch – shortening cycle. This one teaches the body to better use the accumulated elastic energy to produce more powerful contractions. This improvement in reactivity can also be explained by the improvement of muscle-tendon stiffness for big biceps. Plyometric exercises with body weight or ballast, such as jumping hurdles or squats skipped with dumbells, can be used.