Mind Muscle Connection
Developing and utilizing the mind-muscle connection is one of the most overlooked lessons to learn about training. If you are able to develop the mind-muscle connection, all your training will yield greater results.
The mind-muscle connection is basically the internal dialog of the brain and the muscles involved in the movement. Instead of focusing on the task (bending the elbow) you focus on the process (squeeze the biceps). This allows your movements to be more effective and to actually develop what you are aiming to develop. For example, shallow, unfocused squats will not develop the quads, hamstrings or glutes to the full potential. Focusing on what your body is doing and what muscles are contracting and assisting will allow you to recruit and stimulate your muscle fibers most effectively.
How to Develop Your Mind Muscle Connection
To develop the mind-muscle connection, focus on the muscle group you are using. For instance, in a squat, feel the stretch as you sit deep, then think about squeezing your glutes and legs as you stand back up. This is much more effective than just bending up and down.
It helps to brush up on the major muscle groups so you understand what muscle groups cause specific movement. Think about what muscle you are working as you move, and if you don’t know, look it up beforehand.
What To Do Next
Working on moving your body deliberately with the mind-muscle connection is a lifetime goal; you’ll always be practicing and improving it. But once you have an understanding of it, then it will be especially effective to add more sets and reps. From there, you can even add progressively increasing challenges, such as heavier weights, pauses, tempo reps, etc.
It all begins with understanding what you are working though. Once you have that, you’ll see the effects of your training improve greatly!