Restoration Methods – Electronic Muscle Stimulation

Electronic muscle stimulation (EMS) can be a useful tool for a weight lifter. Here are four ways that you can benefit from EMS:

  1. Strength – 10 sets of 10 seconds high intensity followed by 50 seconds of rest is a protocol originally advocated by Russian scientist Dr. Yadou Kots to promote significant strength gains
  2. Recovery – at low intensities EMS provides a “massaging” effect facilitating removal of waste products and delivering nutrition to the muscles through an increase in local blood supply
  3. Rehabilitation – EMS will retard atrophy and maintain strength during injury by providing neural input to muscle and can relieve pain and reduce spasm
  4. Assessment – since EMS recruits white fibers first, a fast-twitch dominant muscle will activate at lower intensities (see page 30 of The Elite Trainer for more details)

The Kots’ method is great to use 4-6 hours after a workout as part of a double split system; whereas, the recovery method works best the day after training and you can do it while you’re on the computer.

Time management is important when you have a busy schedule. Most people are on the computer at least an hour or two a day. Why not accomplish two tasks instead of just one?

Just like listening to an audio book while driving or stretching while watching television, you can use EMS while you’re on the computer. For example, if you trained legs yesterday and your quads are sore today, hook up the electrodes to those muscles, set the machine to a low-intensity, pulsing mode, and surf the web as normal.

Tomorrow we’ll discuss one of the more popular methods of restoration – that is, massage.

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