A new technique used for stimulating muscle growth is becoming really popular recently – blood flow resistance training. This kind of training involves the use of wraps or bands for restricting blood flow during intense occlusion training. Not many people are buying the idea, however. Many people can’t imagine how restricting the flow of blood can be helpful and healthy. They also worry that doing so can lead to embolus or blood clots. In order to appreciate the benefits of this new muscle building methodology, you have to understand what it is first and how it works.
What is Blood Flow Restriction Training?
Blood flow restriction or BFR involves the use of a wrapping device to decrease blood flow to the muscle that’s being trained. A wrapping device could be a blood pressure cuff, knee wraps or resistance bands. In most cases, this technique is performed on the arms and legs, but according to research, it is also beneficial for other parts of the body. As a matter of fact, studies have proven that walking with BFR can also improve muscle size.
How Does BFR Work?
Here are the two main mechanisms through which BFR could work:
By increasing muscle activation.
It was discovered that BFR in conjunction with exercise enables even 30 percent of your 1RM to target the bigger Type II fibers, which play a very important role in muscle size and growth. Later studies also concluded that doing a blood flow restriction bands at the top of the arm while performing a bench press movement can result to greater muscle activation.
By increasing metabolic stress.
Acute metabolic stress is something you shouldn’t worry about. In fact, it is a good thing. According to research, higher metabolic stress can directly affect muscle cross sectional area. This means that the higher the metabolic stress, the faster the muscles actually grow in size.
How to Workout with Resistance Bands?
Blood flow resistance training should not be considered as a replacement for lifting weights. You have to understand that BFR is a tool that you can incorporate with your regular blood flow restriction training. It is often used as a finisher, but you may also use it for self protection when you are injured, extremely tired, or suffering from muscle aches.
Choosing the Right Resistance Bands
While you’ve got plenty of options as to what you can use to wrap around the muscle are you’re working on, you still want something that is easy to use, works efficiently, and of course, is durable. If you’re planning to do blood flow restriction bands, you should go for Occlusion Training Bands by BFR Bands. These bands come with an elastic strap and a quick release cam buckle for ease of use. With the help of the right resistance bands, you can expect to have bigger and harder muscles in no time.