THE CHETING CAVEAT
Not all cheating is off limits. In fact, once you have the fundamentals down pat, there are some solid ways to cheat effectively. For instance, cheat reps that use non-targeted muscles to help lift a weight through the positive contraction increases your time under tension of that targeted muscle, and allows you to take advantage of the negative portion of the rep to boost your building potential.
In a dumbbell biceps curl, for example, once you have no more strict reps left in your tank, use your lower body — not your back, shoulders or arms — to cheat. Perform a quarter squat, making sure your spine and core are stable and strong, then quickly extend your legs and hips and use that momentum to help you lift the dumbbells through the concentric portion to the top, then slowly lower them for four to six seconds through the eccentric until you reach the bottom. Repeat until you can no longer mainWDLQ SURSHU SRVWXUH DQG RU IRUP ³ WKHQ \RX·UH GRQH HOLD IT: ISOMETRICS FOR GROWTH $ VLPSOH EXW QRW HDV\ ZD\ WR LQFUHDVH WKH GLIÀFXOW\ RI D PRYH is to incorporate an isometric hold — pausing for roughly one to WKUHH VHFRQGV DW WKH DVSHFW RI WKH H[HUFLVH \RX ÀQG WR EH WKH most challenging. This will help improve strength and endurance in the moves and movement patterns you want to improve.
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You can also add a longer isometric hold at the beginning or end of a set to increase your time under tension. For example, at WKH HQG RI D VHW RI SXOO XSV \RX·G KROG DW WKH WRS RI WKH UDQJH RI motion (the contracted position) for up to 10 seconds. However, LQ D EHQFK SUHVV ³ ZKHUH WKH PRVW GLIÀFXOW SDUW LV KROGLQJ WKH bar just above your chest — the isometric hold would come at the beginning of a set for safety; at the end, you might be too fatigued to press the weight back up.