Accommodating resistance training machines
We do this by exploding on the concentric (raising) part of any exercise movement, attempting to move the bar as quickly as possible.
Take a moment to think about the implications for punching / hand off power in martial arts / rugby.
A study performed by legendary strength scientist Mel Siff set out to “compare the effectiveness of combined method (band / chains and weights) and free weight training.” (Supertraining, 2003). Greater mean and peak forces were generated throughout the movement 2.
Simply put, chains should be set up so that when you are at the weakest point of the lift, most of the heavy chain is lying on the ground.
This makes the weight on the bar lighter when leverage is at it’s poorest.
Now although this might be a useful step forward for the percentage points improvements needed by elite athletes, its hardly going to set your workouts on fire in the local gym.
In fact 3% is pretty pathetic and is usually a gain that can be expected with simple modifications in lifting technique, or marginally improved nutrition.Thus flattening the strength curve and providing what we call accommodating resistance.In order to grow big and strong one thing should be paramount in your mind – creating maximum muscular tension by firing as many high threshold motor units as possible.2) The use of chains can be extremely demanding on the nervous system and is best cycled in an every other workout fashion for those with a training age of under 3 years, and 2 workouts in 3 for even the most experienced trainee. None of this dropping the weight BS, or ludicrous super slow positive contraction malarky.Remember that eccentrics (lowering the weight) fire only half the muscle fibres of a concentric contraction, but they do so twice as hard – this is why eccentric work makes you sore and is so important to getting the most out of your workouts.The scientists need to stick to their books and stop training pencil necks, as done properly I expect a first six week macro-cycle using chains to improve an advanced trainee’s bench press by anything from 15-25%.