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The three different forms of muscular strength explained

It usually comes as a surprise to many that there are different types of strength. Most regular gym visitors for instance may be employing training methods in which they are making use of these different forms of strength, yet usually only your hardcore gym rat will be able to tell you which form they are using with which exercise.

Here then is an introduction to the three different types, including various examples of exercises that illustrate the principles behind each. You may find out that you are already using some of them, while previously having been unaware.

Dynamic Concentric

A dynamic concentric muscular activity is taking place when the resistance is smaller than your strength. So if you can perform 12 bench press repetitions without any spotter having to give you any kind of support, you are using dynamic concentric strength.

Dynamic Excentric

This is the opposite of concentric as in the resistance is more that your strength can handle. Here then, using the example of the bench press again, a spotter would need to be employed to help you with the upward movements. Excentric exercises are ideal for maximal strength training periods within your training schedule.

Static Isometric / Concentric

Here the resistance is equal to your strength. Meaning that no movements are required with isometric exercises, instead the same position should be held for a appropriate amount of time. The core exercise the plank is an obvious example, where a bridge position has to be held.


Above then are the three different forms of strength training and their definitions. If you are asking your self which methods will give you the biggest gains, only you can know. Ideally excentric exercises should be limited however to maximal strength training phases within your program. Other than that it all depends on your body type, and a trial process for you to find the right combination of exercises.

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