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Exercise Tempo Explained

Sean Lerwill outdoors sit-up

This is a short, sharp explanation of the numbers seen to show tempo of resistance/weights exercises.

An example is 40X0 or 2011.

  • The First number (as in 40X0) is the amount of time you should take to perform the Eccentric portion, or, the lowering of the weight or exercise.
  • The Third number (as in 40X0) is the amount of time you should take to perform the Concentric portion or the raising of the exercise or weight. An X indicates as fast as possible, i.e. explosive (but still maintaining good form).
  • The Second number (as in 40X0) is the amount of time to hold the weight/pause at the bottom of the exercise.
  • The Fourth number (as in 40X0) is the amount of time to hold the weight/pause at the top of the exercise.

Using 3010, you would perform a 3 second eccentric portion (lowering the weight), no pause at the bottom, a one second concentric portion and no pause at the top.

Sean Lerwill - Author

Sean is an former-Royal Marines Commando Officer & Physical Training Instructor. He has been published as a writer five times, has a BSc in Molecular Genetics and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education. He is also a Maximuscle ambassador.

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