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How Can You Incorporate Time Under Tension Into Your Workouts?

How can you incorporate Time Under Tension into your workouts? Here our forum members put together workouts, benefits, downfalls and more so you can decide if this will help you gain muscle mass. Try them if you dare!

By: Workout Of The Week


TOPIC: How Can You Incorporate Time Under Tension Into Your Workouts?

The Question:

Time Under Tension is a training method growing in popularity among athletes and bodybuilders to increase muscle mass.

How can you incorporate time under tension into your workouts? Be specific.

What are some benefits of TUT training?

What are some of the downfalls of TUT?

What kind of results can one expect from incorporating TUT into their regimen?

Show off your knowledge to the world!

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1st Place - mrkdrt
View This Author's BodySpace Here.

Time Under Tension is a training method growing in popularity among athletes and bodybuilders to increase muscle mass. The method can also be used to increase muscle strength and endurance.

As you may have guessed, what time under tension (TUT) actually involves is measuring the time a muscle is under tension. I know you're probably thinking; any workout has a muscle under tension for a certain amount of time, right?

Well, what the TUT method actually does is consciously define the 'set' of an exercise by the length of time to finish it, rather than by repetitions (but repetitions are still involved of course). So, the time it takes to complete the set is the amount of time that the muscle is "under tension." Using a stopwatch or counting "steamboats," you can measure the time of one repetition.

Usually TUT is measured with a 3-digit code, but can be better measured with a 4-digit code to maximize gains. For example, doing a "push exercise" like bench press, the TUT can be measured as 4012.

What this translates to is that it took 4 seconds for the eccentric part of the motion (bringing the weight down, lengthening the muscle), a 0-second pause at the bottom of the motion, then 1-second for the concentric part (pushing it up, shortening the muscle), followed by a 2-second pause at the top (focusing on tight contraction). For this rep, the time under tension is 7 seconds. In a set of 8 reps, the time under tension for the entire set would be 56 seconds.


+ Click To Enlarge.
Bench Press.
Video: Windows Media

For a "pull exercise" like bent-over rows, the TUT can be measured as 1240. This means that the concentric motion is 1 seconds, following by a 2-second held contraction at the top of the motion, then 4-second eccentric motion, ending with a 0-second pause at the bottom to end the rep.


+ Click To Enlarge.
Bent Over Barbell Row.
Video: Windows Media

By measuring the work you are putting on your muscle during each set in this way, you can integrate TUT into your program whether your goal is to build muscle size, increase muscular endurance or build muscle strength.

For endurance it is recommended to have the 5-30 reps per set with the TUT for the set between 70-100 seconds, for strength 1-6 reps per set with a TUT between 4-20 seconds, and for muscle growth 8-12 reps per set with a TUT between 40-70 seconds.

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Workout
How Can You Incorporate Time Under tension Into Your Workouts? Be Specific.
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TUT can be effectively applied to your goals, whether your goals are to increase muscle strength, increase muscle endurance or increase muscle growth.

For building endurance, 5-30 reps per set with the TUT for the set between 70-100 seconds is optimal. For building strength, 1-6 reps per set with the TUT between 4-20 seconds is optimal. For muscle growth, 8-12 reps per set with the TUT between 40-70 seconds is optimal.

For example, to incorporate TUT in a workout for muscle growth as a goal (8-12 reps, TUT 40-70 seconds per set), the following set-up would work:

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arrow Sunday: Rest:
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arrow Monday: Back/Bi's
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Exercise Sets x Reps TUT per Rep TUT
Wide Grip Lat Pulldowns 4x8 1240 56
Bent Arm Barbell Pullover 4x8 4012 56
Bent Over Barbell Rows 4x8 1240 56
Stiff Leg Barbell Good Mornings 4x8 4012 56
Incline Dumbbell Curls 4x8 1240 56
Preacher Curls 4x8 1240 56
Concentration Curls 4x8 1240 56

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arrow Tuesday: Chest/Tri's:
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Exercise Sets x Reps TUT per Rep TUT
Barbell Bench Press 4x8 4012 56
Incline Dumbbell Flyes 4x8 4012 56
Cable Crossovers 4x8 1240 56
Triceps Dumbbell Kickbacks 4x8 1240 56
Skull-Crushers (Lying Triceps Press) 4x8 1240 56
Triceps Pushdowns - Rope Attachment 4x8 1240 56

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arrow Wednesday: Rest or Cardio
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arrow Thursday: Shoulders:
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Exercise Sets x Reps TUT per Rep TUT
Barbell Shoulder Press 4x8 1240 56
Bent Over Rear Delt Raises 4x8 1240 56
Side Lateral Raises 4x8 1240 56
Dumbbell Shrugs 4x8 1240 56
Upright Barbell Rows 4x8 1240 56

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arrow Friday: Legs:
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Exercise Sets x Reps TUT per Rep TUT
Wide Stance Barbell Squat 4x8 4012 56
Narrow Stance Leg Press 4x8 4012 56
Stiff-Legged Deadlift 4x8 4012 56
Lying Leg Curls 4x8 1240 56
Leg Extensions 4x8 1240 56
Standing Calf raise 4x8 1240 56
Seated Calf Raise 4x8 1240 56

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arrow Saturday: Rest or Cardio:
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With this program, the TUT for each set is 56 seconds - falling in the range that is best for muscle growth.

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Benefits
What Are Some Benefits Of TUT Training?
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Both concentric AND eccentric motions are intentionally challenged using the TUT, which can lead to awesome gains on any muscle group you are trying improve. It has been shown that focusing on working eccentric muscle actions with concentric action can lead to greater strength performance, compared to concentric alone.

Also, as more focus is brought to the exercise and movements are slowed down, the correct form is more likely to be used. Correct form is probably one of the most overlooked, and most important factors for muscle growth, strength and endurance.

TUT is useful for all levels of bodybuilders, but is especially useful for beginners or bodybuilders wanting to bust out of that dreaded plateau.

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TUT focuses on muscle tension over a certain amount of time, rather than getting it over and done with quickly, so the muscle will recognize the need to grow (by neural factors) to accommodate the work being applied to it. With that said, a TUT workout alone will not make muscle grow. The benefits of TUT can only come if other factors are in check such as nutrition and adequate rest.

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Downfalls
What Are Some Of The Downfalls Of TUT?
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In some exercises, especially ones that require supporting grip, you may find it is easy to get fatigued if you are not accustomed to supporting the weight for the certain amount of time. Also, as more focus is placed on contraction and slower movement through the exercise, you may fatigue the muscle group sooner, decreasing the amount of reps you could normally do.

One solution to this problem is to take in a good energy source before your workout. Eating a good source of complex carbs before your workout will help and supplements like creatine and beta-alanine also work great to sustain energy in the gym!

In exercises like Squats or Deadlifts, there is less emphasis on a focused contraction at the end of the concentric motion, compared to exercises like Dumbbell Flyes and Lat Pulldowns.

An important factor included in TUT is this contraction. While some exercises may be deficient in a 2-second contraction in the motion, results can still be seen. But for the sake of consistency, it is a downfall in the TUT method. When an exercise is lacking in the held contraction, just use that time to pause at that position.

As with any program or training method, your muscle can adapt to and "expect" the work from the TUT method. Staying with any program too long can lead to that plateau, and nobody wants that! To avoid this rut, try switching up the exercises used in your workouts every 4-6 weeks.

After 8 weeks of using TUT in your workouts it's best to take a break from it for at least 2 weeks to decondition your muscles. This will make them more likely to respond to the method if you take it up again, whatever your goals are.

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Results
What Kind Of Results Can One Expect From Incorporating TUT Into Their Regimen?
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First off, I'm using TUT right now in my workouts, in the program I mentioned above - and the rumors are true, it works! Since I started using TUT 2 months ago for gaining muscle mass, I've gained nearly 7 pounds of lean muscle (maintained the same BF%, caliper method).

But as a caveat, what works for one person may not work for you, so do not expect to gain 40 pounds of lean muscle in a month just because that was the case for someone else. Remember to always maintain a diet and supplementation that applies to your goal, or this or any program won't help you reach your goal.

Although there aren't many studies to verify the TUT method to maximize gains better than anything else, it's definitely worth the try, at least to let you become aware of and get rid of any bad habits you may have in a certain exercise.

The best results you may hear about are mainly word-of-mouth, so as with anything, it's up to you to decide whether or not you want to try it out and see if it works for you.

Cheers!
Mrkdrt

References:

  1. www.bodybuilding.com/fun/exercises.htm
  2. Stoppani, J. Use "Time Under Tension" to Manipulate Your Sets. Fitness Trainer. September/October 2006.
  3. Colliander, E. B. and P. A. Tesch. 1990. Effects of eccentric and concentric muscle actions in resistance training. Acta Physiologica Scandinavica. 140: 31-39.


2nd Place - ManInTheBox
View This Author's BodySpace Here.

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Time Under Tension
Time Under Tension Is A Training Method Growing In Popularity Amongst Athletes And Bodybuilders To Increase Muscle Mass.
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arrow The Bench Press:
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    Time under tension is a training method that was made popular by a strength coach Charles Poliquin. This method required that you actually time how long the targeted muscle was under tension via the weight. A perfect example of this would be the bench press.

    The barbell bench press is an exercise that I feel works great for incorporating time under tension into. You can put up at least 20-to-40 more pounds than you would usually do for reps. Take the weight off the rack and lockout. While a spotter is behind you, slowly let the weight descend to your chest while keeping your chest flexed and your body tight. This is one rep of time under tension, which for short we will abbreviate as TUT.

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Author:
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arrow Bodybuilding & Powerlifting:
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    The great thing about TUT is that it can be incorporated into both bodybuilding and powerlifting. Personally I like doing a hybrid of both, which Layne Norton also follows in his programs. There are a few main exercises that I feel TUT is most beneficial for.

    • Barbell Bench Press:
      Time under tension can be utilized over the course of only two weeks to increase your bench press by great amounts. We will go further in depth of a workout that can be used for doing just this!
    • Barbell Shoulder Press:
      Since you can have complete control over this movement using TUT can be done is a safe and progressive matter. This is also directly tied to increasing bench press by strengthening the front deltoids.
    • Barbell Back Squat:
      Unlike the bench press, I would not advise putting on more weight than you would usually use. Instead, I would take the weight down a significant amount, and focus on resting at the bottom, and exploding up to the top. Doing this in a power rack with the pins set so you can get into a full squat position will make it easy to rest and blow up on the ascent.
    • Close Grip Bench Press:
      Here again, another great exercising for increasing the bench press. Close grip bench press alone will put tons of mass on the triceps and increase pushing strength. However, by working a TUT routine in with CGBP, your triceps will explode and so will your bench press numbers!

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Slow Descent & Explosive Ascent?
Can I Do Exercises That Don't Necessarily Require Slow Descent & Explosive Ascent?
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Absolutely, especially for accessory exercises such as biceps, smaller movements for triceps, shoulders and legs, all of these can incorporate TUT for awesome results and a huge pump! We will get into this more when we discuss our workouts.

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Workout
How Can You Incorporate Time Under Tension Into Your Workouts? Be Specific.
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Working time under tension into workouts can be done easily. I am going to make up a workout that is going to be geared for general muscle building, and I will also list additional exercises, set and rep ranges for awesome TUT results!

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arrow Monday: Chest/Abs:
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  • Barbell Bench Press
      Set 1- 15 rep warm-up
      Set 2- 10 rep warm-up
      Set 3- 8 reps (moderate)
      Set 4- 4 reps (slow descent on each rep, with the assistance of a spotter, explode for each ascent)
      Set 5- 4 reps (slow descent on each rep, with the assistance of a spotter, explode for each ascent)

      After proper shoulder warming up and overall chest warming up, you can delve into the barbell bench press. As you can see, we are only doing two sets of TUT. This is enough to stimulate those dormant fibers.

      Remember to always have a spotter when doing this! After a slow descent your chest and shoulders will be tired and since you should be overloading a little bit, you will need assistance getting the weight up to repeat for reps. Following our main movement, we can move into a few additional accessory exercises for the chest and abs and call it a day!

  • Incline Dumbbell Bench Press
      2 sets of 12 reps
      2 sets of 8 reps
  • Decline Dumbbell Chest Flyes
      4 sets of 12
  • Hanging Leg Raises
      6 sets to failure

      By incorporating in a few sets of incline and decline dumbbell work, we will be able to hit the upper and lower part of the chest for overall chest development and strengthening. I also feel that hanging leg raises is the best exercise for overall abdominal development, and you may adjust sets, if 6 is too many or too few.

    print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Monday.

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arrow Tuesday: Legs/Calves:
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  • Barbell Back Full Squat
      Set 1- 20 rep warm-up
      Set 2- 15 rep warm-up
      Set 3- 12 (moderate)
      Set 4- 8 (With the pins set, or if you are in a free rack, get into a full squat position. Pause for 2-3 seconds, while blowing all of the air out of lungs out, accelerate on the way up. This should be done with the eye of a trained spotter to assure that you are keeping your back straight.)
      Sets 5 & 6 (same instructions as set 4)

      I have always placed huge emphasis on the squat. Beginning a leg workout with it will start your workout in a great way. Notice that we are not doing real super low reps today with back squat. 8 reps is enough to build muscle, increase overall bodily acceleration, but not risk injury nearly as much with low reps.

      Low rep back squatting in my opinion does hold a variety of benefits but also dangers. That is why I also strongly suggest that in order to do this correctly you should have a trained spotter who has a background in bodybuilding to watch your form and make sure you are not rounding your back.

      Form always comes before weight! One last note, if you do use a power rack and have the pins set up. Do NOT rest the bar on the pins and then blow up, the pins are meant to be a guide and primarily be there for safety. Resting the bar on the pins and disengaging with the weight puts your back and spinal chord in a precarious position.

  • Leg Extensions
      4 sets of 15

      While doing these, we are also going to incorporate TUT into these. On each and every rep, I want a full extensions of the leg, and flexion of the quadriceps. You may do these either double-legged or single-legged. I prefer doing double, but the choice is yours. Choose a weight that is easy until rep 8-10. After 10 reps your quads should be burning and pumping!

  • Lying Leg Curls
      2 sets of 15
      2 sets of 12

      For the first two sets; I want them done in TUT fashion. Slow curling, just as though you were curling your bicep, to cut up the hamstring and feel the burn. For the last two sets, you may do them with normal good form, but without the 2-3 second pause at the top. Nothing too complicated about this workout, just your basic leg mass building workout that will have you sore for the days to come!

  • Standing Calf Raises
      2 sets of 20
      2 sets of 15
      2 sets of 10

      Time under tension is actually optional for this exercise. Honestly, I am able to push more weight when I do not pause at the top or bottom and doing this method has made my calves grow greatly. You also must take into account that your calves are never at rest during this exercise either, they are in constant flexion.

      If you do not have a standing calf raise machine available, you can opt to either do them standing with a dumbbell in either hand while working the calves singularly, or with a Smith machine. Now, on to Wednesday!

  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Tuesday.

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arrow Wednesday: Shoulders/Abs:
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  • Standing Barbell Shoulder Press
      Set 1- 15 rep warm-up
      Set 2- 15 rep warm-up
      Set 3- 10 reps (moderate)
      Set 4- 8 reps (controlled, powerful ascent, slow and controlled descent that should take about 3 seconds. For this exercise you may again want a spotter to assist you to get the bar up on each rep. After the first rep your front deltoids are already going to be getting fried. Have a spotter behind you push from your elbows, push just short of locking out, and let the bar down to your upper chest over the course of 3-4 seconds. After 8 reps, your front delts will be fried!)
      Sets 5 & 6- 6 reps (same instructions as set 4)
  • Lateral Dumbbell Raises
      4 sets of 12
  • Bent Over Rear Deltoid Dumbbell Flyes
      3 sets of 10
  • Decline Bench Sit-Ups
      6 sets to failure

      Once again, a back-to-the-basics workout. We can mess around with time under tension for the front barbell presses, but other than that, I like to hit the shoulders with a few basic movements, just to get all around mass and definition.

      The lateral dumbbell raises may be done standing or seated, but I prefer to do them standing because I can generally use a little more weight and get a fuller range of motion.

  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Wednesday.

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arrow Thursday: Back/Biceps:
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  • Wide Grip Lat Pulldowns
      2 sets of 15
      2 sets of 12 (moderate)
      2 sets of 12 (heavy)
  • Bent Over Barbell Rows
      3 sets of 12
      3 sets of 8
  • Alternating Dumbbell Curls
      4 sets of 8

      Here is the first exercise we are going to incorporate TUT into our back and bicep workout. Since back is mainly pulling, it is hard to engage into a TUT position, and in my opinion even risks injury.

      Dumbbell curls are a great exercise to use time under tension in though. On each rep, drive the weight up, using bicep only. Hold for a second, then slowly let the weight down to your side. Use a light weight, between 5-and-10 pounds lighter than normal, and prepare to get the pump of your life!

    That will do it for our back and bicep workout. Yes, a simple routine, but since we are incorporating TUT into all of our workouts, it will make it much more intense, and on a 5-day split we want to ensure our bodies plenty of time to recover from this new stimulating workout routine!

    print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Thursday.

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arrow Friday: Chest/Triceps/Abs:
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  • Close Grip Bench Press (hands shoulder width apart)
      2 sets of 15 reps warm-up
      2 sets of 12 moderate
      3 sets of 8 (Time under tension sets. Here again, you must have a partner before doing these. If you are going remotely heavy you will need assistance for nearly every single rep. You may get the first one or two but after that your muscles will begin to fail due to unfamiliar stimulation. The suggestive execution of this exercise should be done with slightly more weight than you would usually do for the 12-14 rep range on CGBP. This way, by the fourth or fifth rep, your triceps will be pumping!)
  • Incline Barbell Bench Press
      3 sets of 10
  • Cable Crossovers
      4 sets of 12

      On each rep of cable crossovers, I want them performed so you end in a most muscular pose every time. This pose is to be held for between two and four seconds, feel the burn and flood the chest with blood!

  • Overhead Dumbbell Extensions
      4 sets of 10
  • Standing Tricep Pushdowns (done with v-bar, straight bar, or rope)
      3 sets of 15
  • Hanging Leg Raises
      6 sets to failure

      Due to the fact that time under tension routines so often are used to increase bench presses, I decided to use this emphasis in our workout regimen and train chest twice a week. Also, since my chest is my weak point, this is a routine that I have used many times and seen great results with!

  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Friday.

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Benefits
What Are Some Benefits Of TUT Training?
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One of the biggest benefits to TUT training is new muscle stimulus. Take any guy who is in the gym and bangs out large amounts of weight and then put him through a time under tension workout and halfway through he will be spent. It's not even a matter of being exhausted as much as it is muscle fatigue. You will be squeezing out enormous amounts of glycogen and lactic acid and there is a point where muscles stop working.

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It is this new muscle stimulus that causes growth. The workout routine that I made up was more or less for demonstrative purposes and to show how you can assemble a workout and also incorporate time under tension training in with it.

You can definitely use the specified routine for great results though. I generally do not do TUT workouts much longer than 4-6 weeks because the body begins to adapt and again you want to keep your body guessing - that is what initiates growth.

Another great benefit to learning TUT training and doing it is it helps you use proper form. Time under tension forces you to take the weight down to a manageable level, because you can no longer be swinging things around like you once did.

I have had a lot of guys training TUT with me and initially they just wanted to move a lot of weight but then familiarized them with the importance of form. Without proper form you can not target the desired muscle group and also run the risk of severe injury.

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Downfalls
What Are Some Of The Downfalls Of TUT?
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  • I would say one of the greatest downfalls to time under tension training is that you cannot train effectively, especially on bench pressing movements without a partner. For those who workout at home this could be a problem. Time under tension bench pressing should never be done without someone there to spot you and help you if need be. As a whole, heavy bench pressing should never be done alone.
  • Another thing about time under tension is for those who are trying to cut up, I feel that TUT is better for those who are trying to bulk. You are not burning as many calories due to the fact that your heart rate is not being increased as much due to lower volume training.

    For those who are doing a bulking cycle TUT can be a powerful tool for gaining mass!

  • Lastly, while many workouts can be exhausting, grueling, and hard-time under tension can be especially challenging. You may actually not be able to get as much done in the gym after a few sets TUT training.

    In some of my past workouts and with training clients, after a half hour sometimes of TUT training, they simply can not go on. Especially for guys who are trying to train all natural, the energy is just not there and the vigor can dwindle.

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Results
What Kind Of Results Can One Expect From Incorporating TUT Into Their Regimen?
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  • No matter how experienced the lifter, the one thing guys cannot get over is the increased feeling of fullness. During, after, and the day after, guys will rant about how their muscles feel denser than before. This makes sense because when your muscles are under tension they are extremely hard. You are squeezing out glycogen, converting it into energy, and increasing storage space for more!
  • Within a 4-to-6 week TUT cycle, your lifts will increase. If you are familiar with the concept of drop setting, this reference will make sense.

    If you slap 225 on the bar and bench press it out for 8 reps, take about 10 seconds and then rep out 135, that 135 is going to fly up for those first 4 to 6 reps because you are stimulating different fibers due to the fact they were just pressing 90 more pounds. This same effect will take place when you get back to your original workouts.

    After warming up properly, you put on the same weight you were struggling with prior to TUT training, and it is almost guaranteed it will be significantly easier. On the average guys are able to gain between 2-and-4 reps.

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Good Candidate?
Am I A Good Candidate For TUT Training, And How Do I Know It Will Work?
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  • If you have hit a plateau and/or are getting bored with your current workout routine, you should give time under tension training a try. What is worst thing that could happen? You train for 4-to-6 weeks, you go back and you haven't gained much strength. Though this rarely happens, you will not be going backward. You will gain strength and you will be stimulating new muscle fibers.
  • Time under tension training is a different and fun way to switch up what you have been doing for months on end. You must remember that change is the key to growth.

    One of the most beautiful things about the human body is that it is extremely adaptable. To save us from dangerous situations we have been created to survive. Trouble is, when it comes to muscle growth- if you don't have the best genetics then chances are your body adapts quicker than a lot of others.

  • Should you decide to try time under tension training I wish you the best of luck. Remember to always keep form in mind and have a spotter around when necessary.

If you have any further questions about time under training questions, or anything else, feel free to contact me at my email BKevin89@yahoo.com and I will get back to you very soon!


3rd Place - EAGLES56
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Time Under Tension is a training method growing in popularity among athletes and bodybuilders to increase muscle mass. Muscles don't record how many repetitions have been performed, muscles experience varied amount of tension.

Increasing the amount of tension augments muscle stimulation and triggers more growth. Time Under Tension is the amount of time (in seconds) that a muscle is under tension during a given set. Time Under Tension (TUT) or Time Under Load (TUL), are both terms which may be used interchangeably, often associated with a specific tempo.

Tempo was popularized by the Australian strength coach Ian King. Charles Poliquin, a renowned Canadian strength coach is also credited with introducing the practice of TUT into the spotlight.

Tempo is usually represented by a four digit number such as 4020.

  • The First Number (4) dictates the numbers of seconds to complete the eccentric or downward portion of the exercise. This is the part of the exercise opposite to muscle contraction.
  • The Second Number (0) is the pause at the end of the eccentric motion just before the concentric effort.
  • The Third Number (2) instructs the time to execute the concentric or explosive portion of the movement. This would be the motion of muscle contraction.
  • The Fourth Number (0) represents the pause after the concentric muscle contraction. This number may be left out of the usual tempo scheme.

This tempo is then added together and multiplied by the number of reps. If the tempo is 4020 for a set of 10 reps, then the total TUT per set is (6 x 10) 60 seconds.

It is believed that a range of 40-50 seconds is the best to stimulate fast-twitch fibers. Ranges from 90-120 seconds are believed to benefit slow twitch fibers. Use both to achieve the full benefits from Time Under Tension training and aim for an average 50-90 seconds of TUT per set.

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Workout
How Can You Incorporate Time Under Tension Into Your Workouts? Be Specific.
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One can incorporate Time Under Tension into their workouts in a variety of ways. Methods of utilizing TUT include the following:

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arrow Avoid Lock Out:
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    Maintain tension on the muscle and do not lock out after each rep. Locking out transfers the load from the muscle to the joints which can cause injury. The idea is to maintain continuous muscle Time Under Load (TUL).

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arrow "Partials"
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    Partials are reps performed within a set range of motion (ROM). Partials are often used at the end of a set when full repetitions can no longer be performed. However, one can use partials at any time during a set to increase TUT. X-Rep training is based around a foundation of partials (X-reps) between full ROM repetitions.

VIDEO GUIDE


What Are Partial Reps?

This is simply moving the weight through a partial range of motion.

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arrow "Negatives"
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    Negative reps are repetitions consisting of the repeated eccentric phase of an exercise to a slow and steady count as the weight is lowered. Muscles are capable of exerting the most force during the eccentric phase. Consequently, negatives are often performed with a greater amount of weight than standards reps.

    Ex. Lowering the bar to one's chest while benching to the count of 10 or more and then having a spotter's assistance in getting the weight back up, and repeating.

VIDEO GUIDE


What Are Negative Reps?

This technique focuses on the negative portion of muscle contraction (the eccentric or lowering phase).

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arrow Slow Repetitions:
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    Slow controlled repetitions focus on proper form while engaging stabilizers and recruiting more muscle fibers.

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arrow High Repetitions:
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    The more reps performed, the longer a given muscle is engaged. High reps are typically those in the range of 10 or more.

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arrow Drop Sets:
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    Drops sets are a common favorite when trying to access dormant muscle fibers, pushing through fatigue and acquiring that deep muscle burn.

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What Is A Strip Set?

Strip Sets involve spotters removing weight between sets.

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The Beginner Workout
(Monday/Wednesday/Friday)
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Warm up with 5-10 minutes of low to moderate intensity cardio and dynamic stretching.

Exercise Sets and Reps Tempo TUT(seconds)
Flat / Incline Bench Press 2 x 8-10 4020 48-60
One Arm Row 2 x 8-10 3020 40-50
Military Press 2 x10-12 3020 50-60
Seated Row 2 x 8-10 4020 48-60
Shrugs 2 x 8-12 5050 80-120
Close Grip Bench Press 2 x 8-12 4020 48-72
Standing EZ Bar Curl 2 x 8-12 4020 48-72
Dumbbell Side Laterals 2 x 8-12 2120 40-60
Squat / Deadlift 5 x 5 - -
Lunges 2 x 10 - -
Seated / Standing Calf Raises 2 x 8-12 4242 96-144
Leg Extensions 2 x 8-10 3020 40-60
Leg Curls 2 x 8-10 3020 40-60

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Benefits
What Are Some Benefits Of TUT Training?
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Time Under Tension training allows trainees to develop a greater mind to muscle connection while stimulating more muscle growth. The greater motor unit recruitment through TUT training yields increased muscle growth potential.

Time Under Tension also allows trainees to concentrate on their form while lifting and improve the presence of stabilizers. TUT is one of the best ways to promote hypertrophy increases.

TUT training also results in mind blowing pumps. Coupled with proper stretch protocol, typical beginners will experience phenomenal increases in size.

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The Importance Of The Pump!
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The Importance Of The Pump!
As with most profound physiological processes, the pump results from the complex interplay of a number of related functions.
Author:
David Robson

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Downfalls
What Are Some Of The Downfalls Of TUT?
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As everything else in life, nothing is perfect - including Time Under Tension. While many attempt to reap the benefits of TUT, the majority will have difficulty with the increased muscle activity during each set.

Those who have little experience with Time Under Tension may end up going too light to achieve maximal results. A high degree of tension is required to be the most effective.

Another downfall of TUT includes the reduced strength potential through concentration distraction. While one is busy counting the passing seconds, they may not focus on the actual exercise. This (Central Nervous System) CNS distraction may result in struggling with submaximal loads.

1 of 3: The Central Nervous System (CNS):

CNS
The human central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord. These lie in the midline of the body and are protected by the skull and vertebrae respectively.

This collection of billions of neurons is arguably the most complex object known.

The central nervous system along with the peripheral nervous system comprise a primary division of controls that command all physical activities of a human.

Neurons of the central nervous system affect consciousness and mental activity while spinal extensions of central nervous system neuron pathways affect skeletal muscles and organs in the body.


Learn More... Back Next

A beginner struggling with the fatigue associated with this time of work may have their form and control of the weight decrease as the set progresses. Failing to have a spotter will inevitably end in injury. It will take some time before one is accustomed to the pressure placed upon the body by TUT.

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Results
What Kind Of Results Can One Expect From Incorporating TUT Into Their Regimen?
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One can expect noticeable size increases after little time into a TUT training regimen. The increased motor unit recruitment translates into an improved mind to muscle connection and future muscle growth due to the isolation of desired muscles during exercise.

Maintaining tension while varying rep tempo will expand one's growth to epic proportions. Ever since I discovered Time Under Tension, I've packed on slabs of mass and developed a much firmer physique. I highly advocate TUT for those looking to get larger.

References:

  1. http://www.protraineronline.com/past/april15_00/timeundertension.cfm
  2. http://www.t-nation.com/tmagnum/readTopic.do?id=515288
  3. http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/likness15.htm
  4. http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/mohr108.htm
  5. http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/tempo.htm

EAGLES56


3rd Place - Beastinthemakin
View This Author's BodySpace Here.

In today's world bodybuilding is on the evolution of new muscle growth, yet many still don't know many of the new advancements, and those who are aware often do not know how to implement these strategies into their current workout.

One of these recently creeping up in the market is time under tension (TUT). Time under tension is a simple and taxing strategy used in bodybuilding that has recently caught plenty of attention.

TUT is simply extending the amount of stress or tension placed on the muscles. This method causes excessive growth do to the large amount of fiber activation taking place. However, there are several types of ways to increase tension, and many of them are equally effective. For example:

These 5 mentioned above are probably the most common in bodybuilding. Also, they are most likely the most effective.

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arrow Partial Reps:
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    These are basically reps that are a fraction of the full contraction from one rep. Partial reps are 2-4 reps that focus at the main point of fiber alignment, allowing for larger stimulation of muscle cells. They are done at the end of a set and can be added in conjunction with drop sets.

    Example: 21's (7 partial reps in the lower, middle and top of the bicep curl contraction.)

21's 21's 21's
Click To Enlarge.
21's.
Video: First 7 Reps MPEG (297 KB) - Windows Media (88 KB)
Video: Next 7 Reps MPEG (247 KB) - Windows Media (78 KB)
Video: Last 7 Reps MPEG (1.1 MB) - Windows Media (277 KB)

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arrow Slow/Controlled Reps:
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    Slower reps in the negative or positive part of a rep is often associated in gaining strength. However, in bodybuilding this is also a great element to use in your next workout.

    By increasing the time to do the rep, you are increasing the amount of fibers actually participating in the exercise which also leads to great gains. Usually this type of lifting calls for about 3 seconds going down, a slight static hold, then about 3 seconds going up.

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arrow Drop Sets:
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    A body building favorite, drop sets offer a variety of advantages, because, like controlled reps, they place more stress on fibers causing activation of "dead" fibers.

    Unlike static holds and controlled reps, drop sets offer a larger advantage because like partial reps they burn larger quantities of fat, achieving the ultimate goal of gaining muscle with out fat.

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Workout
How Can You Incorporate Time Under Tension Into Your Workouts? Be Specific.
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Well, this is a difficult question to answer for many reasons. Although gains are great, not knowing what exercises can and can't take advantage of certain TUT methods can lead to devastating injury. It is important to understand that some muscles are built mostly of fast-twitch fibers, like the triceps. So when stress is placed on them for a extended amount of time, the muscle can easily rip right of the bone.

During your workout I recommend this type of set up:

  • Partial reps w/ biceps, traps, chest, hamstrings and quads
  • Static holds w/ back, deltoids and traps
  • Controlled reps w/every muscle group besides triceps and biceps
  • Drop sets w/ every body part(isolation movements; no compound exercises)
  • Exhaustion sets w/ triceps and deltoids

These solutions I feel work the best, although for exhaustion sets you can use with a lot more various muscle groups like quads. However, risk of injury becomes greater.

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The Workout
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Caution: Before starting this workout it is recommended that proper warm-up occurs to reduce the risk of injury. Also do a weight that is appropriate. Rest times should be about 30 seconds to a minute. (Supersets are not recommended.)

Key:

  • Middle - partial reps at middle of rep
  • Top (least stress) - partial reps at top of rep
  • Bottom (most stress) - partial reps at top of rep

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arrow Monday - Chest/Brachialis/Forearms:
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arrow Tuesday - Legs:
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arrow Wednesday - Off
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arrow Thursday - Back:
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arrow Friday - Shoulders/Triceps:
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Finish with a cooldown cardio exercise and some static stretching. The static stretching will help stretch the fascia of the muscle tissue allowing for more growth.

Due to the exhaustion and energy needed for this workout I recommend some kind of recovery drink, (i.e. SciVation's Xtend).

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Also, a great post-workout protein would be Nature's Best Isopure Zero Carb. It is a great product and contains 50g of protein in every serving! Alpine Punch is my favorite flavor.

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Benefits
What Are Some Benefits Of TUT Training?
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The benefits of TUT training are great for the bodybuilding world, because of the extreme growth that can occur in the body. This is great for people who don't have much time during the year for the gym, or beginners who are trying to get their foot in the door. It also can be beneficial to bodybuilders that have come to a standstill in mass gains.

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Downfalls
What Are Some Of The Downfalls Of TUT?
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There are some major and minor downfalls of TUT training.

First, injury is the largest downfall of them all. Above I mentioned how only certain techniques apply to different muscle groups. Being careful, doing lifts precisely and proper stretching can eliminate the threat of muscle pulls, strains and tears.

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[ Click here to learn more. ]

Second, there is the dreaded day after workout pains. TUT training often creates these pains, often leaving you in a terrible mood. If you have the money get muscle therapy done. Remember though, these pains usually last for only about a couple of weeks.

Third, rapid increase in mass often leads to one thing; stretch marks. As you know stretch marks take forever to get rid of, so I recommend buying some butter cream lotion, like cocoa butter. Apply twice a day, once in the morning and at night. Also keep properly hydrated, so skin does not dry out fast.

Last, and maybe most important to some, is loss of strength. When using controlled reps, or exhaustion sets you will see a decline in max strength. This is because every fiber is being used in the muscle including slow-twitch fibers.

Using these techniques build up slow fibers and causes less involvement with fast-twitch fibers. Therefore if you are a person lifting for strength, partial reps are probably the most effective. Drop sets can lead to development of slow-twitch fibers, too. However, they do not develop slow- twitch fibers as fast, so it can be used without large drops in strength.

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Results
What Kind Of Results Can One Expect From Incorporating TUT Into Their Regimen?
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Well, depending on the degree of the workout people can see varying gains. According to the Colorado Experiment, a man gained 40 pounds of muscle using a high recovery, TUT program. This emphasizes how important recovery is in this type of training.

TUT training should not go any longer then 5 weeks, with one week of recovery. Also most have found larger gains on a 3-4 day program having resting days in between lifting days.

On average an experienced bodybuilder can build a moderate amount of lean mass in about 3 months. However, a new bodybuilder, an average weightlifter, or occasional lifter can experience a great deal of new lean mass. This was proven by the producers of X-Rep Training, Jonathan Lawson and Steve Holman.

Look at the difference in size, reduction in fat, and vascularity. This is Jonathan after months of X-Rep Training.

Jonathan Lawson Jonathan Lawson
Jonathan Lawson After Months Of X-Rep Training.

As you can see TUT training can lead to drastic results and even change the way people look at you. Remember the rules, and find a great program.


How Can You Incorporate Time Under Tension Into Your Workouts?

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