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Power Holds Exercise

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Power holds is something too often overlooked when teaching a new bodybuilder about his body. But power holds offer extremely valuable information for any intermediate or advanced bodybuilder because it offers very useable positional awareness using enhanced feedback methods.

Similar to isometric training power holds offer enormous self-awareness of how your body holds onto a weight or lifts a weight. Make sure the weight you select is not too challenging as you simply want to "feel" how your muscles hold the position.

Feeling the structure of the muscles holding the weight you will increase the awareness of the different muscles working and be able to identify weak links to help ingrain the pattern required. Simply hold the position using a relatively light weight for 9 to 12 seconds you should not feel completely fatigued after each set.

By randomly adding these power holds movements between sets during your workouts you will improve your maximal performance and also increase your lifting longevity. But power holds can also be very effectively used to increase strength and size.

Select a weight that is between 80% and 100% of your maximum for 3 to 6 seconds. Try to stop halfway through the movement and hold it without moving while thinking of the whole body tension and how the body connects it all together can be enlightening to realize.

Power holds also improve the structural integrity of muscles by increasing the connective strength of the tendons or ligaments attached to the muscle group concerned. Good power holds should be done for 2 or 3 minutes without moving, even if you take a quick 10 second break during the 2-3 minutes.

A good example of a power hold would need a power rack that has adjustable safety pins so that you can adjust the weight to do a standing overhead press. If you get under the bar that is hooked onto pins and your elbows locked out, you then get under the weight lifting it off the pins, extending your legs you then hold this position for the time selected.

When doing this movement the bar will be a little behind your head in line with your rear deltoids, your humerus is slightly externally rotated and shoulder blades are squeezed together with your lats flared and contracted as hard as you can acting like the pillars holding the weight.

With your whole body completely tensed up in the mid-section and the legs tensed holding the weight steady for 6 or 8 sets of 3 to 6 seconds each. Doing this will increase your ability to lift a heavier weight. To strengthen tendons the weight should be power held for 2 minutes with no rest.

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