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Why hy heav­ier dumb­bells are bet­ter than n lighter ones.

Big­ger dumb­bells get you faster strength gains than lighter ones do, not be­cause they cre­ate more mus­cle (sci­ence shows both sizes pump up mass equally well with suf­fi­cient reps) but be­cause they’re likely bet­ter at train­ing your ner­vous sys­tem to give you more juice, a new study in Fron­tiers in Phys­i­ol­ogy finds. “Lift­ing heav­ier weights may ac­ti­vate your body’s mo­tor unit pool – that is, the brain-to-mus­cle sig­nalling sys­tem – more fully,” says study au­thor Nathaniel Jenk­ins. What’s more, re­peat­edly crank­ing this com­mu­ni­ca­tion could in­crease the phys­i­cal force mus­cles are able to pro­duce in the long run. Nathaniel says in or­der to net the power boost, choose a weight that’s chal­leng­ing enough that you can com­plete only eight to 10 reps with it per set.

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