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What is Isokinetic training?

Isokinetic training is a type if exercise training that uses a special machine. The exercise machine creates different levels of resistance. That way, your movements are at a constant speed, no matter how much force you apply. Whatever your strength level is, the machine can always match the amount of force you apply.

Many people use this training in their regular exercise routines. Isokinetic training is also popular for rehabilitating muscles and joints after injuries. Machines are available for all the muscle groups. That lets physical therapists test and train your specific muscles and joints. The machines algo give measurements, so providers can monitor your progress.

What to expect from Isokinetic Training

You often work with a physical therapist or occupational therapist before starting a training program. They evaluate your condition and come up with a program that is specific to your needs.

The therapist gives you an overview of the machine and how it works. They can show you how to properly use the equipment. Before starting your exercises, they may adjust the machine to match your current strength and fitness levels. While you are performing the exercises, the therapist takes measurements and monitors your progress.

Depending on the type of injury or condition you have, your training program may require you to do the exercises several times per week. Your therapist may increase the number of repetitions, pace and duration as you gain strength over time. Recovery takes time. You can expect treatment with isokinetic training to last weeks or months.

Because of how the isokinetic machines are designed, you are less likely to push yourself past your current abilities. With the right guidance, pulled muscles and other injuries from this training program are also unlikely.

Common conditions requiring Isokinetic Training

Isokinetic Training is effective for treating or helping you recover from a variety if conditions including:

  • Stroke
  • Obesity
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Muscle Injury
  • Recovery from medical procedure

An isokinetic muscle contraction is one in which the muscle shortens as it contracts but, unlike an isokinetic contraction, does so at a consistent rate of speed. It is the rate of speed, in fact, that separates it from other typed of muscle contraction and requires a specialized piece of equipment, known as an isokinetic dynamometer, to produce.

Isokinetic Dynamometer

Whether for strength training or rehabilitation, isokinetic contractions require a specialized piece of equipment, known as an isokinetic dynamometer, that controls the resistance placed on a muscle as well as the velocity of the movement.

Most dynamometers are designed for the knees or elbows, but there are some that can be used for wrists, ankles, hip flexors, and other muscle groups. The machines look similar to those found at the gym but are mechanically controlled and able to measure muscle performance on digital monitor.

Outside of a gym or physical rehabilitation setting, isokinetic contractions are rare. The closest example may be swimming the breaststroke in which water provides constant resistance to the movement of your arms.



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