Blood flow restriction training or BFR is one of the newest and most effective muscle-building techniques out there today. This training method can guarantee the growth of your muscles in terms of size and strength, but you have to make sure that you do it the right way.
How does blood flow restriction training work?
Blood flow restriction training is an efficient and highly effective training method that works by restricting blood flow to the veins (and not the arteries). When blood flow to the veins is restricted while leaving the arteries open, blood is allowed to flow freely to the target muscle group without letting it leave.
Restricting the flow of blood to the veins immediately causes an increase in the swelling of the cells. Once the cells swell, they become defensive because they can sense danger. As a result, the cells restructure themselves, and this causes them to get bigger. This is how you grow muscles!
According to blood occlusion training experts, this technique also leaves lactic acid trapped in the muscle. For those who don’t know, lactic acid is anabolic or muscle-building. It can turn on protein synthesis, which is another important process in the growth of muscles.
How to put blood flow restriction training into practice?
It is believed that the fastest way to see occlusion training results is to use BFR on the arms and legs because these are the muscle groups that are most appropriate for occluding.
To do BFR training, you should first use BFR bands to wrap the top portion of the muscle you want to grow – the top of your upper thigh or your biceps. In terms of the tightness level, 7 out of 10 is ideal. Make sure that you don’t feel any tingling or numbness. If you do, that means you have wrapped your limbs too tightly and you should adjust it.
Blood flow restriction is also said to work best with light weight. When using this technique, it’s recommended that you choose 40 to 50 percent of what you normally lift for a regular set of moderate reps. You can even go as low as 20 percent of your 1-rep max. You want to lift 15 to 30 reps each set, and make sure to use your muscles as hard as possible.
It is advised also that you rest for about 30 seconds between sets. These rest periods are short, but it’s enough to drive blood into your target muscle, boost the lactic acid buildup, and improve your pump. It is the combination of these three factors that will lead to the significant growth of your muscle size and strength.
If you want to try blood flow restriction training, make sure you do it with an expert trainer, and don’t forget to use reliable BFR bands.