Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 73

Thread: The Correlation of Strength & Size In Regards to Muscle

  1. #1
    Getting There... Irish Pilot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    779

    The Correlation of Strength & Size In Regards to Muscle

    The oddity of it all just pisses me off sometimes. (warning...random rant)

    Now I know there are different types of fibers, strength and size are two different animals, etc. etc...but my tech knowledge is poor when it comes down to how it all works. Im sitting here looking at guys who have a 1RM 75lbs less than me on the Flat Bench over on other boards, and these guys have pretty amazing chest size and definition. Ill be honest, I really dont have decent chest size and definition. I think I move pretty good numbers for a guy my size, and yet Im bombarded with pictures of people who lift significantly less and look amazing...looks that I aspire to over the next few years.

    I seek knowledge. Help me understand the difference between size and strength. Point me towards literature. Aint life a bitch?
    - Slave & Master At The Same Damn Time -
    Hoping To Compete Natty Early 2011

  2. #2
    Must...work...out... nockits's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Squat rack or bench.
    Posts
    948
    lifes a bitch, i agree.
    i don't know exactly how it works, but i do know that high reps will get you bigger muscles (i think thats it), and low reps will increase strength. i know some people like to workout just to look big, and some people workout just to get strong. strong muscles tend to be smaller because they are more compact. don't let the other guys bring your hopes down. just focus on whatever your goal is.

    now, there can be another reason why they are using less. it could be that their technique for training is different (ie. rest pause, rest length, timed reps, neg. reps, etc, etc.)

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    125
    I would also like some information on this.... I hear that caloric intake is what determines size, then I hear that it is your rep range... Could someone clarify this a little?

  4. #4
    Banned
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Kansas City, MO
    Posts
    3,096
    you have to consider the specificity of training and the CNS as well. Muscle is only part of the equation. CNS and teaching your body how to lift the weight are more important IMO.

  5. #5
    Getting There... Irish Pilot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    779
    Reko could you expand on that at all?
    - Slave & Master At The Same Damn Time -
    Hoping To Compete Natty Early 2011

  6. #6
    Nuttin to it but to do it Chalky Palms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    516
    Quote Originally Posted by nockits View Post
    lifes a bitch, i agree.
    i don't know exactly how it works, but i do know that high reps will get you bigger muscles (i think thats it)
    yeaa....no. It's probably a good idea to try a number of different rep ranges but it isn't as cut and dry as that. Low reps, heavy weight will build the most muscle, strength and size are pretty heavily correlated.
    "Show me a good loser, and I'll show you a loser."

    Best Raw Lifts- B 315 S 405 D 555
    Workout Journal

  7. #7
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Baltimore
    Posts
    256
    Basically, being strong is a lot more about being able to recruit a lot of muscle fibers in a productive way at the same time. You can damage the crap out of your muscles and get them to grow more, but in a sense you won't know how to use it. You have to train the nervous system to have a higher effiency in actually recruiting what you have. That's why you see tiny olympic lifters clean and jerking more than a lot of big, bulky dudes.

  8. #8
    Weaker
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    391
    Like Reko said, and I hope I can add to this with the same thinking, its got alot to do with the recruitment of fibres and your CNS (central nervous system).

    If someone were eating to maintain their 'non-big' size and continue to train heavy with lower rep ranges you should, technically increase strength. It's obviously not directly related to size. Not all heavy/low ranges are required, I guess though, because other accessory work would most likely be lighter.

    Even though Jay Cutler may be bigger than you, he may not have recruited everything he has, in terms of all his muscle fibres and CNS, in order to lift more.

    I think that may be on the right lines, if not I'll check back and learn something too.

    P.S. I know Jay was probably a bad example.
    Journal

    Age: 21
    BW: 12st/1168lbs
    Height: 5'9"
    Big hiatus, deciding on new goals...

  9. #9
    All Natural Power Lunar Effect's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    312
    This will answer all of your questions:

    http://www.gain-weight-muscle-fast.com/rep-ranges.html

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    125
    Quote Originally Posted by Lunar Effect View Post
    This will answer all of your questions:

    http://www.gain-weight-muscle-fast.com/rep-ranges.html
    No it won't

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    125
    Quote Originally Posted by Chalky Palms View Post
    Low reps, heavy weight will build the most muscle, strength and size are pretty heavily correlated.
    This seems more or less to be the consensus, but could you explain why many talk about higher reps best for hypertrophy?

  12. #12
    Getting There... Irish Pilot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    779
    Quote Originally Posted by Chalky Palms View Post
    Low reps, heavy weight will build the most muscle, strength and size are pretty heavily correlated.
    Well...it is generally understood that lower reps (3-5 range) are neural gains while higher reps provide hypertrophy (size). Otherwise we would be going into the gym and doing 1RM repetitions wouldn't we?

    That being said, I still wanted some literature to get into detail about the differences.
    - Slave & Master At The Same Damn Time -
    Hoping To Compete Natty Early 2011

  13. #13
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    997
    Quote Originally Posted by Irish Pilot View Post
    Well...it is generally understood that lower reps (3-5 range) are neural gains while higher reps provide hypertrophy (size). Otherwise we would be going into the gym and doing 1RM repetitions wouldn't we?

    That being said, I still wanted some literature to get into detail about the differences.
    Find me a guy benching 600 who is small. Yeah, there is going to be some variation, and a lot of it has to do with bodyfat, but there is a reason the superheavyweights are ALWAYS stronger than the lower weight classes. It takes mass to move mass. The limit to how strong a 150lb guy can get is much lower than the limit of how strong a 250lb guy can get.
    Last edited by OGROK; 12-07-2008 at 07:56 PM.

  14. #14
    Getting There... Irish Pilot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    779
    Quote Originally Posted by OGROK View Post
    Find me a guy benching 600 who is small...The limit to how strong a 150lb guy can get is much lower than the limit of how strong a 250lb guy can get.
    Very true. I was speaking in generalities.
    - Slave & Master At The Same Damn Time -
    Hoping To Compete Natty Early 2011

  15. #15
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Baltimore
    Posts
    256
    Quote Originally Posted by OGROK View Post
    Find me a guy benching 600 who is small. Yeah, there is going to be some variation, and a lot of it has to do with bodyfat, but there is a reason the superheavyweights are ALWAYS stronger than the lower weight classes. It takes mass to move mass. The limit to how strong a 150lb guy can get is much lower than the limit of how strong a 250lb guy can get.
    Sigh.. I really dont like this type of statement. The answer to everything strength training is not just 'gain weight'. Yes, a lot of guys need to, but I hate seeing the boards blanketed with this. You can be remarkably strong and stay reasonably small. Yes, superheavyweights are stronger in general, but if you look at Olympic lifting, the superheavies(105+s) are barely stronger than the 105s, and the 105s are barely stronger than the 94's, and the 94's are just edging out the 85's.

    Yes, putting on more mass can get you stronger. But its not the only way, and most guys (unless you are already at a very elite level) still have room to get a lot stronger with their current mass. Most people are just not that efficient in their motions.

    High weight + low reps does not equal size. Diet = size. Volume helps. But I can speak for myself, all my friends who are lifters, and my athletes that I coach when I say that High weight + low reps doesnt make you big. I squat heavy (85%+) multiple times a week for doubles and singles, yet I am not huge. Neither are the rest of those guys.
    Last edited by JHarris; 12-07-2008 at 08:33 PM.

  16. #16
    Getting There... Irish Pilot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    779
    ...but I think his point was that with growth will come strength gains. While size and strength wont necessarily parallel, bigger is generally capable of more strength. If you were to stay at 200lbs your strength cap would be lower than if you were to allow yourself to gain another 25lbs...which you seem to acknowledge with your statement about Oly lifters.

    Your point goes to the core about what my question was. Case in point: there is a 50 to 60 something guy at my gym that looks pretty solid for a guy his age. He is about my size (5'8, maybe 180-190lbs). You wouldnt think much until he racks 300+ and does squats like they bore him. I mean him no disrespect...he looks good...but you would never guess he was capable of that.
    Last edited by Irish Pilot; 12-07-2008 at 08:59 PM.
    - Slave & Master At The Same Damn Time -
    Hoping To Compete Natty Early 2011

  17. #17
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Baltimore
    Posts
    256
    Quote Originally Posted by Irish Pilot View Post
    ...but I think his point was that with growth will come strength gains. While size and strength wont necessarily parallel, bigger is generally capable of more strength. If you were to stay at 200lbs your strength cap would be lower than if you were to allow yourself to gain another 25lbs...which you seem to acknowledge with your statement about Oly lifters.

    Your point goes to the core about what my question was. Case in point: there is a 50 to 60 something guy at my gym that looks pretty solid for a guy his age. He is about my size (5'8, maybe 180-190lbs). You wouldnt think much until he racks 300+ and does squats like they bore him. I mean him no disrespect...he looks good...but you would never guess he was capable of that.
    Strength gains simply don't have to be accompanied by growth. That was my point. Yes, bigger normally has more potential, but 99% of people who go to the gym are not even close to their potential.

    If your goal is to get stronger period, the easiest way is certainly to gain weight and neuro-muscular efficiency at the same time. No question. I will never argue that. But if you are just looking to gain strength without mass gains (as so many athletes are), then you can also get a lot stronger without putting on mass.

  18. #18
    Getting There... Irish Pilot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    779
    Quote Originally Posted by JHarris View Post
    Strength gains simply don't have to be accompanied by growth. That was my point. Yes, bigger normally has more potential, but 99% of people who go to the gym are not even close to their potential.

    If your goal is to get stronger period, the easiest way is certainly to gain weight and neuro-muscular efficiency at the same time. No question. I will never argue that. But if you are just looking to gain strength without mass gains (as so many athletes are), then you can also get a lot stronger without putting on mass.
    Quite true...like boxing. Need the strength and power but usually cannot afford to carry the mass with it. I just wanted to make sure to clarify the point that if you do take that method, you are in a sense holding yourself back.
    - Slave & Master At The Same Damn Time -
    Hoping To Compete Natty Early 2011

  19. #19
    Nuttin to it but to do it Chalky Palms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    516
    Quote Originally Posted by Irish Pilot View Post
    Otherwise we would be going into the gym and doing 1RM repetitions wouldn't we?
    That is generally my goal, or at least some singles.
    "Show me a good loser, and I'll show you a loser."

    Best Raw Lifts- B 315 S 405 D 555
    Workout Journal

  20. #20
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    997
    Quote Originally Posted by JHarris View Post
    I squat heavy (85%+) multiple times a week for doubles and singles, yet I am not huge. Neither are the rest of those guys.

    It doesn't matter % of your max you squat, the only factor I am talking about is how much weight? I could take a 95lb man and have him squat 85% of his 100lb max and he wouldn't ever get big. What I am talking about, is find me someone squatting 800 who isn't huge. People who have enormous strength are almost always enormous themselves.
    Last edited by OGROK; 12-07-2008 at 11:07 PM.

  21. #21
    All Natural Power Lunar Effect's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    312
    Quote Originally Posted by primal21 View Post
    No it won't
    Did you read it or was that a prediction? What are you unclear about?

  22. #22
    Nuttin to it but to do it Chalky Palms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    516
    all rep ranges should be utilized, but more weight on the bar = more mass on the ass, you can argue with your venuto articles but the biggest guy and the smallest guy in the gym are usually the strongest/weakest accordingly.
    "Show me a good loser, and I'll show you a loser."

    Best Raw Lifts- B 315 S 405 D 555
    Workout Journal

  23. #23
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Baltimore
    Posts
    256
    Quote Originally Posted by OGROK View Post
    It doesn't matter % of your max you squat, the only factor I am talking about is how much weight? I could take a 95lb man and have him squat 85% of his 100lb max and he wouldn't ever get big. What I am talking about, is find me someone squatting 800 who isn't huge. People who have enormous strength are almost always enormous themselves.
    It actually does matter what % it is - that's how you figure out what heavy weight is for gains, no? That 95lb man wouldn't get immediately big, but if he worked hard and ate appropriately, he would definitely get a lot bigger.

    People who are enormously strong tend to be pretty big, yeah. But again, that doesn't mean you can't be very strong without the weight. Take a look at this guy:

    http://bp1.blogger.com/_s4dD78yYZ4Y/...ankle+flex.jpg

    I think just about anyone would have a hard time not being impressed with his 275kg olympic squat, yet he is not huge.

    The big point here is that the advice of get big to get strong has its place, but it isn't the only way to be strong. Mass helps move mass, but efficiency also moves mass.

  24. #24
    Senior Member OGROK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    997
    Quote Originally Posted by JHarris View Post
    It actually does matter what % it is - that's how you figure out what heavy weight is for gains, no? That 95lb man wouldn't get immediately big, but if he worked hard and ate appropriately, he would definitely get a lot bigger.

    People who are enormously strong tend to be pretty big, yeah. But again, that doesn't mean you can't be very strong without the weight. Take a look at this guy:

    http://bp1.blogger.com/_s4dD78yYZ4Y/...ankle+flex.jpg

    I think just about anyone would have a hard time not being impressed with his 275kg olympic squat, yet he is not huge.

    The big point here is that the advice of get big to get strong has its place, but it isn't the only way to be strong. Mass helps move mass, but efficiency also moves mass.
    Dude, that's olympic lifting. There is a lot less emphasis on strength there and tons more emphasis on technique and explosiveness so the strength and size correlation isn't as obvious. Also it's way easier to **** up your leverages and **** in olympic lifting. Even after all that, it's still there -- the biggest guys competing still put up the biggest numbers.
    Last edited by OGROK; 12-08-2008 at 12:04 AM.

  25. #25
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Baltimore
    Posts
    256
    Quote Originally Posted by OGROK View Post
    Dude, that's olympic lifting. There is a lot less emphasis on strength there and tons more emphasis on technique and explosiveness so the strength and size correlation isn't as obvious. Also it's way easier to **** up your leverages and **** in olympic lifting.
    A lot less emphasis on strength? That's not quite correct. Its a strength sport! It just so happens that it also incorporates a lot of other athletic abilities at the same time.

    Olympic lifting produces some of the strongest people in the world, hands down. Moreover, it also produces hideously strong people who aren't gigantic.

    Its easier to something your leverages? Yeah.. Im not sure what you are getting at there, but there is nothing that makes a snatch easier beyond being shorter. You can't arch your back more or tie knee wraps to give the illusion of depth so you don't have to do as much work. In that weightlifting, the bar starts on the floor and ends up over head. The Olympic squat is also more demanding.

    I also pointed out earlier that the biggest guys there only barely outdo the next weight class down. Moreover, they are still all freakily strong. Again, size is not a prerequisite for strength. Often times people have both, but people can be very strong without having to be very big.
    Last edited by JHarris; 12-08-2008 at 12:10 AM.

Similar Threads

  1. The bench Press
    By Reinier in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 02-01-2010, 05:39 PM
  2. Got Strength?
    By THE BRUTE in forum Powerlifting and Strength Training
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 05-26-2008, 01:11 PM
  3. RESULTS results thread
    By KingWilder in forum AtLarge Nutrition Supplements
    Replies: 754
    Last Post: 05-18-2008, 02:40 PM
  4. Article On Muscle Growth.. Total Bullshit?
    By MonStar1023 in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 12-10-2001, 12:12 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •