Isometric exercises: how to strengthen the body, practically without moving

Isometric exercises are power exercises during which the length of your muscle does not change and the joints do not move. You just freeze in a certain position for a certain time. Either your muscles contract as a result of resistance from an object and you fix this position for a while.
Isometric exercises develop endurance, tone, strengthen your muscles and increase their volume. They are part of various strength training sessions and special training programs for the military. These exercises were used in his trainings by Alexander Ivanovich Sass (also known as Iron Samson), who was awarded the title “The Strongest Man on Earth”. With his own weight not exceeding 75 kilograms, Samson could lift a horse. This man became the founder of isometric exercises.

Isometric exercises: how to strengthen the body, practically without moving


Advantages of isometric exercises


Saving time. During training in the fitness room a lot of time is spent on rest between approaches and exercises. As a result, the total time of direct workout of the muscles is much less than the time of training. By performing isometric exercises, even with a shorter workout, the same amount of muscle workout time is achieved.
Availability. No additional equipment is required for the exercises. It is enough to have a desire and a chain – a tight towel or something else you can’t break with your hands.
Rapid recovery. After a full workout in the gym it will take 24-48 hours to fully recover. Sometimes it takes even more time to ease muscle pain. Isometric exercises do not damage muscle tissues much, so you can train regularly, achieving faster progress.


The basic rules for performing isometric exercises:

Isometric exercises: how to strengthen the body, practically without moving
  • Warming up. Before starting the exercises, you should warm up to avoid injuries.
  • Tighten your muscles. As you do not move, the main task is to tense the muscles as much as possible. It is not necessary to do isometric exercises to the limit of your abilities, you will achieve results even at 60-80% of the tension.
  • Breathe deeply. This is a must. Breathe with the lower part of the abdomen, round it when you breathe. Mentally count to five every time you breathe and exhale. Try to breathe this way during the whole workout.
  • Take the right posture. The posture is very important when doing isometric exercises. Thus, if you change the angles, you can increase muscle strength. If you regularly perform absolutely the same exercises, you will not achieve maximum results. Therefore, sometimes bend your arms at an angle of 90 degrees, sometimes 120 or 45 degrees.
  • Combine the exercises
  • Combine isometric exercises with other types of training. For example, to pump up your muscles, isometric exercises alone will not be enough.