Anterior Tibialis Stretch – Calf Raise

Stretching the opposing muscle with weight before lifting can lead to faster gains. This is called “pre-set antagonist weighted stretching.” The video shows one example.

Most of the benefits of weighted stretching focus on the target muscle. For example, performing a bottom-range dumbbell press hold at the end of a chest workout. But what if we were to stretch the pecs right before doing a set of, say, rear-delt rows?

What you get is increased active range of motion of your row, along with higher output and better quality muscle contractions. How does this work? It’s based on the agonist-antagonist relationship: For a muscle to shorten to the desired range, its antagonist must be able to lengthen to accommodate.

Taking the example of the row, the pec minor has to lengthen to allow the rear delts to shorten. The rear delts are the agonist; the pecs are the antagonist.

When the agonist shortens and contracts, the antagonist lengthens and relaxes. This is a slight oversimplification, given that the antagonist doesn’t always relax, at least not fully, but you get the idea. – Ross Gilmour

, , , , , ,

Leave a Reply