Concentric vs eccentric workout


Eccentric movements are highly beneficial for strength development and hypertrophy. Engaging in such movements can lead to more soreness compared to concentric movements because of the higher force output and potential for intracellular disruption. Soreness is often associated with the disruption of calcium, which can lead to swelling, pressure, and pain 1.

Concentric movements are when the muscle shortens, typically while lifting a weight, and these play a significant role in activities designed to enhance muscular endurance 2. For instance, muscular endurance training involving high repetitions and short rest periods often emphasize concentric over eccentric loading to avoid major muscle damage and soreness 2.

For strength training, moving weights faster and practicing acceleration is key, as strength is about moving a heavier mass at a faster rate of acceleration 3. An example strength training protocol, called the three one one, involves controlling the eccentric movement (lowering the weight), pausing briefly, and then accelerating quickly during the concentric portion (lifting the weight) 4.

Eccentric Movements

Andy and Andrew discuss the benefits of eccentric movements for strength development and hypertrophy, but caution that they can lead to more soreness than concentric movements. They also explain that muscle soreness is often caused by disruption of calcium, rather than microtrauma.

Huberman Lab

Dr. Andy Galpin: How to Build Strength, Muscle Size & Endurance | Huberman Lab Podcast #65

Advanced strength techniques like eccentric overload training involve loading at greater than 100% of one's one repetition max for the eccentric portion only, and have been shown to be effective for strength development 5.