Maybe my all-time favorite WWF superstar wrestler Ultimate Warrior was ahead of his time. He knew what was up with those restrictive bands on his bulging biceps even before it had become a fad in the fitness industry. =) All kidding aside, check out why we have been using these cool looking bands with exercise in the clinic. And yes, you too can get one of these to be as cool as the Ultimate Warrior.
Blood Flow Restriction (BFR) Training is a method of exercise used in the rehab and strength & conditioning world to amplify our bodies natural physiological response to a relative hypoxic state (decreased oxygen to blood). This decreased oxygenated blood flow to the muscles forces the recruitment of type 2 (fast twitch) fibers.
Essentially, we are "fueling fire" to the muscle by causing our metabolism to kick into high gear. The byproduct of this leads to a systemic influx of growth hormone to heal tissue via collagen synthesis.
In the rehab world, the potential is huge because you are able to work with lighter weights with major strength gains in a short amount of time. The current protocol with backed research shows that hypertrophy of a muscle occurs with a 20% of a client’s 1RM (Rep Max).
In the cycling world, there is some very promising research indicating its use in the endurance population. In one study there were "significant improvements in VO2max (6.4%) and exercise time until exhaustion (15.4%) observed in a BFR-training group vs a control group" with only 15 minutes of training 3x/week for 8 weeks with intensity set at only 40% VO2max. Abe, T., Fujita, et al. (2010). I am eager to implement this into my own routine and will encourage this with athletes that are competing throughout the season. This can also be used as a short duration, low-intensity day for endurance progression or maintenance within a competitive season.
I have been able to test this out with several clients that are either rehabbing post-surgically or simply recovering from overuse injuries and the response has been amazing so far.
I am so excited to announce a new partnership with @gobstrong to provide the best BFR (Blood Flow Restriction) training tool on the market. (B)STRONG BFR Training Systems offer the safest portable blood-flow restriction technology on the market. These bands are high quality and are specifically designed to prevent occlusion. If you are interested in purchasing a system for yourself, click the (B)Strong logo below to receive a 15% discount or use discount code: VELOFITSTRONG