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Concept 11: Muscle Fitness


Glossary

Concept 11: Muscle Fitness



Absolute Strength
  The maximum amount of force one can exert, e.g., maximum number of pounds or kilograms one can lift on one attempt. (See Relative Strength.)
 
Absolute Muscular Endurance (Dynamic type)
  Endurance measured by the maximum number of repetitions (muscle contractions) one can perform against a given resistance; for example, the number of times you can bench press 50 pounds.
 
Anabolic Steroid
  A synthetic hormone similar to the male sex hormone testosterone. It functions androgenically to stimulate male characteristics and anabolically to increase muscle mass, weight, bone maturation, and virility. Antagonistic MusclesThe muscles that have the opposite action from those that are contracting (agonists); normally, antagonists reflexively relax when agonists contract.
 
Concentric Contraction
  An isotonic muscle contraction in which the muscle gets shorter as it contracts, such as when a joint is bent and two body parts move closer together. An example is the biceps muscle contraction that occurs when pulling up on a chinning bar.
 
"Definition" of Muscle
  The detailed external appearance of a muscle.
 
Dynamic Contraction
  A popular name for isotonic exercise.
 
Dynamic Strength
  A muscles ability to exert force that result in movement. It is typically measured isotonically.
 
Dynamic Muscular Endurance
  A muscles ability to contract and relax repeatedly. This is usually measured by the number of times (repetitions) you can perform a body movement in a given time period. It is also called isotonic endurance.
 
Eccentric Contraction
  An isotonic muscle contraction in which the muscle gets longer as it contracts; that is, when a weight is gradually lowered and the contracting muscle gets longer as it gives up tension. Lowering the body from a pull-up on a chinning bar is an example of eccentric contraction of the biceps muscle. Eccentric contractions are also called "negative exercise."
 
Hypertrophy
  Increase in the size of muscles as the result of strength training; increase in bulk.
 
Isokinetic
  Isotonic concentric exercises done with a machine that regulates movement velocity and resistance.
 
Isometric
  A type of muscle contraction in which the muscle remains the same length. Isometric exercises are those in which no movement takes place while a force is exerted against an immovable object (also known as "static contraction").
 
Isotonic
  Type of muscle contraction in which the muscle changes length, either shortening (concentrically) or lengthening (eccentrically). Isotonic exercises are those in which a resistance is raised and then lowered, as in weight training and calisthenics (also called "dynamic" or "phasic").
 
Plyometrics
  A training technique used to develop explosive power. Referred to as "speed-strength training" in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, where it originated. It consists of concentric isotonic muscle contractions performed after a prestretch or eccentric contraction of a muscle.
 
PREProgressive Resistance Exercise
  Exercises such as those done with free weights or weight machines, also referred to as progressive resistance training (PRT).
 
Relative Muscular Endurance (Dynamic type)
  Endurance measured by the maximum number of repetitions one can perform against a resistance that is a given percentage of one’s 1RM; for example, the number of times you can lift 50 percent of your 1RM.
 
Relative Strength
  Amount of force one can exert in relation to one’s body weight or per unit of muscle cross-section; that is, if a 100-pound person lifts 250 pounds, he or she has lifted 2.5 pounds per pound of body weight, and thus has more relative strength than a 250-pound person who lifts 500 pounds, or 2 pounds per pound of body weight. The latter has more absolute strength.
 
RM (Repetitions Maximum)
  The maximum amount of resistance one can move a given number of times; for example
1 RM = maximum weight lifted one time;
6 RM = maximum weight one can lift six times.
 
Static Muscular Endurance
  A muscle’s ability to remain contracted for a long period. This is usually measured by the length of time you can hold a body position. It is also called isometric endurance.
 
Static Strength
  A muscle’s ability to exert a force without changing length. It is also called isometric strength.
 
Sticking Point
  The point in the range of motion where the weight cannot be lifted any farther without extreme effort or assistance; the weakest point in the movement.

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