Hyperplasia a Get-Big Reality?
Hyperplasia occurs when the number of muscle cells increases as a response to exercise. Most of the research on it has used animals—such as birds, rats and cats—as subjects. Jose Antonio, Ph.D., performed a study on a bird in which he used weights to progressively overload one wing and stretch the anterior latissimus dorsi muscle. The overload scheme started with a weight that was 10 percent of the bird’s weight and increased it by 5 percent up to 35 percent. Two days of rest preceded an increase in weight. After 28 stretch days, the study recorded the greatest gains in muscle mass ever in an animal or human model of tension-induced overload—a 334 percent increase in muscle mass with a 90 percent increase in fiber number.
[Note: Antonio’s research may give even more credence to the practice of using stretch-position exercises, like flyes for chest, and end-of-set partials in the semistretched position at positive failure, as described in the item below, for faster mass increases.]
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