By continuing use this site, you agree to the Terms & Conditions and our use of cookies.
Speed of execution in weight training

Speed of execution in weight training


weight training involves various parameters which, when taken into account, will have an impact on the quality of the session and on the final result.

Indeed, depending on your initial objective, you won't work in the same way, you won't use the same range of movements (base or isolation), the same number of sets and repetitions per set, recovery times and many others, such as nutrition...

Different speeds for different objectives?

In this article, we're going to focus on the speed of movement execution. This will have a different impact on the muscle being worked, and will be adapted according to the objective of the session.

The speed at which movements are performed will not be the same whether you're working for muscle strength or for volume. The more you want to stimulate a muscle in depth, in order to work until it's exhausted, the longer you'll need to put it under tension.

On the contrary, to work on strength, it's necessary to recruit as many fast fibres as possible in a very short space of time, so the exerciser will try to move the load as quickly as possible.

fast rep VS slow rep

Speed for mass and volume

When the aim is to develop muscle volume or mass, stimulation will have to take place over a relatively long period of time, and over the entire path of the load. Consequently, the exerciser will slow down the eccentric phase (control phase, the moment when the muscle retains the weight) so that this phase represents 2/3 of the movement, as opposed to 1/3 for the concentric phase (muscle contraction phase). In other words, it's important to slow down the load-control phase so as to stimulate the muscle as much as possible over the whole stroke.

The longer the muscle is under tension, the more stressed it will be, and the more it will have to adapt in terms of strength and volume.

Speed for strength

When working on strength, the speed of movement can be identical in both concentric and eccentric phases, as the aim is to activate as many fast-twitch white fibers as possible, and to work the nerve impulses. What's important, therefore, is not the time the load "weighs" on the muscle, but the muscle's capacity to contract.

When you want to work a muscle group in search of power, you combine strength and speed of execution. In fact, power is equal to the product of strength*speed. The aim is to move a load as quickly and as heavily as possible.

Coaching tips

As you've seen, it's not just the load used or the number of repetitions that need to be taken into account during your sessions.

The speed of execution will have an impact on the stimulation provided to the muscles, and will be adapted to meet the objectives of the moment: strength, power or stimulation for muscle volume.

Establish your training strategies by taking all parameters into account, and make progress.