Disadvantages of Manual Resistance Training

1. Two people are needed to perform any manual resistance exercise. A lifter and a training partner to apply the resistance are required to perform each exercise.

2. The lifter must learn how to perform each exercise. Before maximum gains can be obtained, the lifter must learn how to perform each exercise. This is also a problem when any new exercise using equipment is performed, however due to manual resistance style of exercise, the learning process of performing the exercise probably creates more problems for the inexperienced lifter than will a conventional exercise performed on equipment. The lifter must learn how to coordinate the exercise with the spotter.

3. The spotter must learn how to safely and effectively apply the resistance. The spotter's job is even more important than the lifter's. The training partner is the key to any strength building program but the effectiveness of any manual exercise is totally dependent upon the abilities of the spotter.

4. The lifter may be significantly stronger than the spotter.
a. If it is an exercise performed with the upper body, additional resistance can be held by the lifter (an example would be a plate). This will make the spotter's job easier.
b. The lifer can be required to allow more time for the raising of the exercise. Allow 2-4 seconds for the raising instead to 1-2 seconds
c. De-emphasize the lowering phase until the lifter has reached tan adequate fatigue level. Allow 2 seconds to lower the resistance instead of 4 seconds.
d. Perform the exercise one leg or arm at a time.

5 Accountability. The lifer may ask "How will I know how much a strength I am gaining from workout to workout." Unfortunately, accountability will always be a problem. With manual resistance you can not record and evaluate strength gains as you can with a barbell or machine. You are forced to rely on the spotters to do their job. If the spotter does his/her job, strength gains will increase.


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