What is mind-muscle connection?
When you’re doing an intense HIIT session or in the middle of a hatha yoga class and your trainer says “Focus on the mind-muscle connection," what does he mean, exactly? We will break it down to you in this article today!
Have you ever thought about which muscle groups you are working on when you are performing an exercise? Let’s say, a simple pull-up exercise. When you’re pulling yourself up the bar, you’re mainly working on the back area and that is the muscle you should be working, that is the primary muscle group. At the same time, we are also using our biceps to help stabilise our body and that is our secondary muscle group. A frequent complaint after a few repetitions is that our arms are tired instead of feeling it in our back. This is the moment where “mind-muscle connection” comes in, we can control our minds to tell our body to execute the movement by using our back muscles instead of relying on our biceps.
How do we do it?
Start light, go slow and steady and focus on the form.
Starting out light
When we start doing a new exercise, our bodies will make intelligent adjustments to help us complete the exercise in the most efficient way without using too much energy. However, this may not be the correct way. To ensure the perfect form and proper use of all muscle groups, we have to start out with lighter weights. This will prevent us from using the secondary muscle group.
Go slow and steady
Rather than rushing off to finish an exercise repetition, go slow and steady and feel the slow burn from inside. When you go slow, you become more mindful of the burning sensation coming from the muscles. This sensation will help us understand how and which part of muscles we are working on.
This is the ground rule for any exercise, you have to ensure that your form is correct to avoid any injuries and to get the most benefit out of your workout. If you’re unsure if your form is correct when you’re performing an exercise, check with your trainer! They are always there to help!
Understanding which muscle group should be feeling the burn at each exercise is crucial for any workout program. Simply put, if you don't know which group of muscle you need to use to perform the exercise, then how could you make the right connection with your muscle?
Next month, we will dwelve into the benefits of mind-muscle connection. One of them being, spending half the time on exercise but achieving double the result! Sounds incredible? Stay tuned to our next article!