Study reveals daily exercises that can give you better results in less time

Researchers found that doing some exercises can offer better training results than others in less time. The study co-author said that people can do a small amount of exercise daily to see significant results.

Daphne Clarance

New Delhi,UPDATED: Dec 28, 2022 17:53 IST

Exercise can make a difference even if it it's limited in terms of repetitions, technique and time. (Photo courtesy: Getty Images)

Exercise can make a difference even if it it’s limited in terms of repetitions, technique and time. (Photo courtesy: Getty Images)

By Daphne Clarance: Don’t we all want quick results when hitting the gym or starting a new weight-loss program? While many think that spending hours working out would only deliver results, a recent study suggested that there are certain exercises more efficient than others that can offer the same or better results.

The research, published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology, stated that exercise can make a difference even if it is limited in terms of repetitions, technique and time. One doesn’t have to spend hours at the gym to strengthen muscles.

A team from Edith Cowan University in Australia studied three types of dumbbell curl exercises, which involve lifting and lowering dumbbells to increase muscle strength in the arms. The study looked at eccentric (lowering weights, lengthening the muscle), concentric (lifting weights, shortening the muscle), and both concentric and eccentric exercises together (alternately lifting and then lowering weights in the same exercise).

While people who did concentric exercises increased in their lifting strength, the ones who did only eccentric and the concentric-eccentric exercises also improved in their lowering strength as well as isometric (static) strength.

Sports scientist Ken Nosaka and co-author of the study said, “This latest study shows we can be far more efficient in the time we spend exercising and still see significant results by focusing on eccentric muscle contractions.”

He added that many people think the lifting action provides more benefit or at least the same benefit. However, the study found that concentric muscle contractions (the concentric exercises) had little training effects.

This means, the eccentric muscle actions achieve the same results as the concentric-eccentric exercises, even though the technique takes half the time. The eccentric-only exercises also scored highest in terms of muscle thickening.

The results were based on four groups of people — 14 people doing concentric exercises, 14 doing eccentric exercises, 14 doing concentric-eccentric exercises and 11 doing no exercise at all. The people did the exercise routines twice a week for five weeks with 3 sets of 10 repetitions.

Nosaka added that people should understand that eccentric-focused training can allow people to spend their time more efficiently. “With a small amount of daily exercise needed to see results, people don’t necessarily have to go to the gym but can incorporate eccentric exercise into their daily routine,” Nosaka said.

This research has opened a gateway for further studies into strengthening leg muscles.