Slow Reps vs Fast Reps | Which is best for Muscle Building?

Slow Reps vs. Fast Reps


While doing weight training many people don't focus on reps speed but reps speed matters for muscle building. Conventional way is to perform reps at moderate tempo. Some people think that speed doesn't matter and some think that doing reps with slow speed are best for muscle building.

There are some reasons why people prefer to do slow reps. First reason is that in slow speed the load on the muscles is for more time and in bodybuilding field it is known as TUT (Time Under Tension). And this technique has magical properties to improve muscle growth. Putting muscles under tension for more time leads to muscle fatigue which increases muscle growth. 

Also slow speed restrict blood due to which metabolic build up increases in the muscles which increases muscle pump and build lactic acid which leads to muscle growth. But studies on Time Under Tension shows that this technique provide significant benefits. The the big reason behind this is you have to use lighter weights in slow reps or Time Under Tension technique. 

For Example: If your lift highest weight of 100 pound and do 1 rep than you can do 8 reps of 75 pounds with regular speed. Now if you have to do 8 reps of 75 pounds in slow speed than you don't do that and things got wrong here for slow reps. So the things that effect your muscle growth is to do reps and sets to muscle fatigue or failure and with this you can fully use your muscle fibers. 

You can do reps and sets up to failure with fast and slow reps but fast reps has some advantage. Because with fast reps you not only lift heavy but also use more muscle fibers. Slow reps mainly use small type-I muscle fibers which cause less muscle growth as compared to type-II muscle fibers. 

So if you do 3 set of 8 reps with 75 pound weight in fast speed than your total work volume will be 1800 and if you do 3 sets of 8 reps with 55 pound weight in slow speed than your total work volume will be 1320 Because in slow speed you can't do 8 reps of 75 pounds. And slow resp has 27% less total work volume than fast reps.  

Slow Reps don't use more muscle fibers as fats reps do which is important to stimulate muscle growth as well as muscle strength. Slower Reps means lower weights and lower weights means lower total work volume but it does not mean slow reps are useless. Slow reps helps in building endurance and slow reps are useful for beginners to correct their form and preventing injuries. With slow reps you make your body strong to lift heavy weights.

So these are some thoughts about slow reps vs. fast reps. If you have some thoughts share with us in the comment section.

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