Fight Ageing By Improving Your Fast-Twitch Muscle

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Being fast, explosive and powerful won’t just allow you to lord it over your team-mates on the sports pitch – it can also help you stave off the muscle-wasting effects of ageing. Swedish research shows fast-twitch muscle (type II fibres that help you move with power) depletes far more rapidly than slow-twitch muscle (type I fibres used for endurance). That's why Coach's sister magazine Men's Fitness called on coach Jack Lovett ( to explain how to boost your proportion of type II tissue and hang on to your hard-earned muscle.

Do Compound Lifts With a Heavy Bar

Why ”Strength equals power,” says Lovett. “Compound lifts, especially the big four – squat, deadliftbench press and overhead press – develop maximum strength that will provide an instant boost to your power output.”

How ”Every session in the gym should begin with at least one compound lift done for maximum strength,” says Lovett.

How many Five sets of three to five reps, with two minutes’ rest between sets.

Bound Up The Staircase

Why “Plyometric moves like jumps, bounds and hops are less stressful on the body than sprinting but allow you to generate a high rate of force and learn total-body movements for full power,” says Lovett.

How Find an obstruction-free staircase (or sub in box jumps). From stationary, explode up and forward and land softly, using your arms for momentum.

How many Before lower-body lifts, do five sets of five reps, recovering fully between sets.

Why “Your ability to absorb impact, balance, accumulate forces and transfer power all rely on your core strength,” says Lovett. “The stronger it is, the greater your foundation for power.”

How Start with planks in the top of a press-up position and progress to doing them with hands in gymnastic rings and feet elevated. Once you can hold it for 90 seconds easy, add extra weight.

How many Four sets of 30-90 seconds.

Throw With Force

Why “Throwing movements are ideal for developing power because, unlike lifts with bars or kettlebells, they allow for uninhibited triple extension,” says Lovett. In other words, you can launch them with all your might so you don’t need to decelerate.

How Use overhead med ball throws in an open space. From a crouch, explode up and chuck the ball behind you as far as you can.

How many Five sets of five reps, recovering fully between sets.

Lift Like An Olympian

Why “When done with good technique, cleans and snatches allow you to dynamically lift serious weight with every muscle,” says Lovett.

How Make sure you get one-on-one coaching to learn good technique but above all, focus on lifting as fast as you can, rather than as heavy as you can.

How many Five sets of three to five reps, with 30-85% of your one-rep maximum, resting for 90 seconds to two minutes between sets.

Coach Staff

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