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Three Stage Contraction & Last Rep First
 
 
John Peterson John Peterson is offline
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08-08-2018, 01:16 PM
 
Hello Everyone,

When I was a kid growing up I was introduced to Isometrics by my Uncle Milo. Milo started performing Isometrics when he was 37 years of age in 1962 after reading about the White House physicians putting President Kennedy on a program of Isometrics. The Isometrics Milo did came right out of the Charles Atlas course as he taught himself what to do. Believe me my uncle Milo mastered Isometrics.

In October of 1966 when I turned 14 he gave me a copy of Vic Obeck's book 'How to Exercise Without Moving a Muscle' for my birthday. I still have that copy and often refer to it.

But to cut to the chase in explaining Isometrics to me he asked, "Jackson how many Atlas Push-Ups do you do in a set?" i responded, "I usually do sets of 50." He then asked, "Which repetition is the most beneficial?" I responded, "Probably the last few that are the hardest to do." he responded affirmatively and said, " Good Answer." Then he went on further to state that that was the concept behind Isometric Contraction. He literally said, "Aside from flushing your muscles with blood its the last few reps that give you the strength gains. Now the idea with Isometrics is to do your last rep first." That's how he trained. He did the Atlas exercises but at a fraction of the number that he used to do because he turned most of them into Ultra intense Isometric contractions and only performed enough full range reps to get a good pump.

In a sense Bruce Lee made a similar observation when he said:

"Only one or two seconds are required to take a curl from thigh level to chin height. The hardest part of the curl is not the start or the finish, but instead the middle of the curl, where leverage causes the greatest effort. Yet the muscles are in this position for only a fraction of a second. With Isometric Contraction the muscles would be exerting full force in this position for 12 seconds so, theoretically, one effort here could build as much strength as more than a dozen repetitions performed in the conventional fashion."


Here's my point.

I have discovered that the Three Stage 5-6-7 Contraction that our friend Solytrain shared with us is a method that delivers the best of both worlds and is the only Isometric Contraction method that I have ever used that delivers a really great "pump" or infusion of highly oxygenated blood into the working muscle tissue.

Don't misunderstand, way back in 1988 I had a fantastic series of discussions with coach James Baley and he taught 6-second contractions exclusively comparing it to shooting a rogue elephant. When I asked him about the number of reps he recommended he responded to my question with a question. "How many shots does it take to bring down a rogue elephant?" I responded that it depends on who is doing the shooting to which he said. "You're missing my point. it takes only one well placed shot to do the job and the same is true with Isometrics." Bottom line: I really did get his point and Coach Baley could literally quote Hettinger's book 'The Physiology of Strength" chapter and verse that also stated that just one 6-second contraction at 2/3 or more of one's maximum strength was all that was necessary to achieve a maximum strength stimulus. Granted that may be true relating to strength alone. BUT if you desire to get a great pump in performing an Isometric Workout you really should be doing the 5-6-7 protocol. By doing so you'll get the best possible muscle sculpting workout from Isometrics as well as strength building. BUT in terms of just attaining maximum strength he was correct about a single, maximum intensity 6-second contraction.

---John Peterson



 
 
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Andy62 Andy62 is offline
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08-08-2018, 02:08 PM
 
That is a great post and it makes some good points !

I have always been a history and biogrqaphy buff. When I look at historical events that have been remembered and have influenced history where only one indidviual or a few people were involved it makes me respect the power of human INTENSITY. The gun fight at the OK Corral and Samson pushing down the stadium on the Phillistines both fit into this catagory

A stronger isometric contraction is the result of having transmitted a stronger command impulse from your mind to the target muscle.

Last edited by Andy62; 08-08-2018 at 02:19 PM.
 
 
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Upshur74 Upshur74 is offline
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08-08-2018, 03:56 PM
 
John,

what is your experience with even longer holds, let's say 30-30-30? Would it even increase the pump or would it be to taxing to the CNS?
 
 
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John Peterson John Peterson is offline
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08-08-2018, 04:20 PM
 
Hello Upshur,

I actually do the single contraction of 30+ seconds every other day so that I am doing 5-6-7 and Aerobic Isometrics on alternate days every day. I never do multiple rep Aerobic Isometrics such as 30-30-30. If I am going 30+ seconds I go from one position to the next. I can manage 30 X 30 second contractions in 25 Minutes and it is brutal. I am drenched with sweat at the end.

Very seriously speaking, Isometric Contraction causes an intense heating of the body.

---John Peterson
 
 
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solytrain solytrain is offline
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08-08-2018, 11:21 PM
 
hi, all i could say is about my experience with the concept of 2/3 max, when i officially learned of isometrics at about 13 years old i was taught the final 7 seconds to be at max possible intensity, and after a couple of years when i was about 17 I was shown an isometrics booklet put out by Bullworker,and it quoted the Max Plank institute research that 2/3rd of max is all you need, so obviously i was gonna try it (the protocol not the equipment) , and why not, easier and with the same or better results? well i could tell you that i was very disappointed, that after about about 2 months i lost both strength and size, evidenced in many ways, people that i easily beat previously at arm wrestling i was finding it a struggle and so on, so i went back to my max and never looked back, and also anecdotally working fulltime for many years training clients in my private gym i have seen the same thing, so i don't understand how the institute came up with that ratio, i would really like to know what I'm missing

Last edited by solytrain; 08-08-2018 at 11:39 PM.
 
 
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John Peterson John Peterson is offline
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08-10-2018, 07:51 PM
 
Hey Soly,

I am with you. I never got anywhere near the results with the 2/3 of max for a 6-second contraction protocol that Coach James Baley taught that I am getting now when training with the 5-6-7 protocol that I learned from you. The difference is night and day. The last 7 seconds to the maximum changes everything but let me also state that the first 5 seconds at 50% is necessary to infuse blood into your muscles so that you really can contract and then the second 6 seconds at 75% really get the muscle fibers activated and ready for the final 7 seconds at all out intensity. I have never had the results from Isometrics that i am achieving now. Why? Because I didn't know how.

I also want you to know that I have given you, by name, 100% credit for developing the 5-6-7 protocol. I owe you my friend and I am grateful.

---John Peterson
 
 
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solytrain solytrain is offline
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08-11-2018, 11:46 PM
 
thanks John, that's very gracious of you, not many people will acknowledge it, it's an honor
 
 
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John Peterson John Peterson is offline
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08-12-2018, 07:04 AM
 
Hey Soly,

It is what it is. Isometric Contraction as practiced with the 5-6-7 Protocol is the Master Method.

It is literally the 'Fountain of Youth' in terms of what it does to build and then maintain strength and muscle mass by stimulating youthful hormone production.



---John Peterson

 
 
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kong2 kong2 is offline
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08-14-2018, 05:47 AM
 
Mr.Peterson, Can you do aerobic isometrics using a resistance band? Thank you!
 
 
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John Peterson John Peterson is offline
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08-14-2018, 01:48 PM
 
Hello Kong2,

Absolutely! Why not? I knew a guy years and years ago that had developed an exceptional set of arms by using a heavy resistance band Isometrically. What he did was to stand on it and then perform a curl at a 90 degree angle which he would hold and hold until his arms started shaking almost convulsively and then he would stop. He went for several minutes at a time and there is no doubt that he was performing an 'aerobic' Isometric Contraction. That was the only exercise he did with the strap that I was aware of and he developed a set of upper arms, forearms and grip that were amazing. He was doing exactly what I advocate with my Isometric Power Belt. Granted at the beginning he could have performed 50 to 100 full range curls in a row. The reason I say that is because he told me that that was what he used to do until he came up with his Isometric idea. Nobody told him how to do it, it just came to him intuitively. And he didn't call it an 'aerobic' Isometric contraction. It was a case of a man following his own intuition and it paid off big time.

---John Peterson

 
 
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