Return to Homepage

Concentric Exercise, Muscle Development And Weight Loss

Concentric exercises are those where there is shortening of the muscle while working against resistance

Concentric movements are what you think of as normal exercises. In concentric exercises your muscles shorten as they do work.

When you lift something, anything, whether a piece of paper, a chair or weights at the gym, your muscles contract and they shorten as you lift the object. That's concentric exercise.

How do muscles work?

What do muscles do? They shorten when you contract them. And they lengthen when you relax them. That's it. Shorten. Lengthen. They can't do anything else.

In theory it is very simple. A muscle is attached to one bone on one end and another bone on the other end. In between is a joint, like your elbow or your knee. When you contract the muscle there is movement at the joint.

That is all there is to moving your arm, or leg, or walking or playing the piano. One muscle attached to two bones and working across a joint.

Doing some work

Imagine you are trying to push a stalled car. You are leaning into it and pushing as hard as you can.

You contract your triceps muscles in the back of the upper arm. The triceps shortens. It pulls on your forearm. Your arm straightens at the elbow.

And as you do this the car starts to move a little. This is a concentric movement.

But aren't all exercises that way?

At first it might seem like all exercises are concentric. You pick up a book -- your biceps muscle shortens -- and the forearm is flexed at the elbow. Concentric exercise.

But what happens when you put the book down? Not when you drop it. But when you put it down slowly, in a controlled movement. The muscle is still working.

If the muscle wasn't working your arm would just hang limp at your side. It is working while it is lengthening.

And a muscle working while it is lengthening is called eccentric exercise. It's the opposite of concentric exercise -- and you need them both.

So what does it matter?

Muscles require stimulation to be healthy. If they are not used they become weak and unhealthy and you suffer. It leads to weight gain and insulin insensitivity and obesity.

But, if you do this often enough -- concentric movement against resistance, like when you lift weights -- the muscles will grow and become healthy and will burn energy and speed your metabolism. This is the use of concentric exercise in weight loss.

Where to start:

There is a lot of information on this site. The links below will get you off to a good start.

Most popular pages:

These are some of our most popular pages. They are also some of the most helpful if you are finally ready to lose weight.

You can always reach us:

  • 28960 US Highway 19 North, Suite 115
  • Clearwater, FL 33761
  • (727) 771-8282

  • Or to use our contact form click here.

top of the page