When training, don’t forget your tendons and joints also play a role in sustaining tension and creating movement. If you can expand your perspective that there is more than just muscle that needs stimulation, you will have a better understanding of how your body actually works and how/where injuries frequently occur.
Tendons are located at the end of muscles. They attach the muscle onto the bone and transmit the force created by the muscle onto the bone. They also act as a buffer by absorbing forces to limit injury risks. Therefore, they have to withstand a lot of force and pressure and for this reason are way more susceptible to injury.
Tendons typically have a poor blood supply as well. Countless research has shown that throughout the length of the tendon there is a small number of blood vessels per cross-sectional area of the tissue. This means that the tendon has poor vascularity comparatively to its muscle counterpart (muscle pumps) which prevents adequate repair and can lead to further weakening. A lot of tendons go through incomplete healing but are asked to function at original capacity.
Due to differing rates of adaptation between muscle tissue and connective tissue, it takes a much different time frame for
1. A muscle to grow/deteriorate in size
2. For a tendon to thicken
3. For a joint capsule to strengthen/expand/thicken its collagen/elastin fibers
Isometric training, partial reps, plyometrics, bodyweight training involving holds etc are some examples of ways to engage the tendons & connective tissues
Think about—and train—your connective tissue every day. That could range from random sets of static squat holds done throughout the day. I like Dan John’s “Easy Strength” program, where you basically pick a few movements to do each day—every day—with a fairly manageable weight/bodyweight. You won’t see the rapid progression of connective tissue training, but it’ll also be easier on your body over time as your tendons thicken and can withstand more pressure. Movements that were once hard will typically feel easier.


Posted on February 11, 2017, in clinical massage therapy, massage, massage therapy, myofascial release, Soft Tissue, sport massage and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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