A large portion of the talk around flywheel training is based on the eccentric overloading benefits however it is also possible to focus purely on concentric muscle contractions as well.
A concentric contraction is one that occurs when the muscle shortens as it contracts.
Pure concentric training can prove useful for short sessions e.g. before a competition or a game when athletes want to maintain their muscle activation but are looking to avoid any muscle soreness. For this reason it is very useful during an athlete’s taper period.
Concentric training with the kBox allows for a variety of exercise choices with many different set-ups. Athletes, coaches and home gym goers can train their upper and lower body as well as their core, all with the one device. By focusing on concentric actions you are able to limit downtime and increase volume.
How to perform concentric training?
Concentric biased training can be performed in either of the following ways:
- An explosive Romanian Deadlift with a large range of movement (into a high pull) can be performed with an explosive hip extension and pull. Then relax and let the bar lift into the high pull, decelerating with the shoulders and arms on the way down and applying no eccentric load for the hip extension. A few explosive bursts (low work volume, high concentric activation and low eccentric work) is perfect for maintenance work during in season or before a competition.
- A spotter assisted squat (can be performed with a deadlift as well) can use a heavy resistance and have the spotter in the top position to unload the eccentric portion. Even a small shift will have big effect due to being stronger in the eccentric phase. For example 100% concentric gives approximately 70% out of max load in the eccentric phase. If the coach brakes or “spots” 30% the athlete is loaded to approximately 50% of max in the eccentric phase i.e. a very low load. As above, low volume (few reps, long rest, few sets) is useful for maintenance but still achieving high quality concentric training.
Focusing on concentric training with the kBox means coaches and athletes don’t have to shy away from strength training before important fixtures and can prevent pre game muscle soreness.