Mechanisms of Muscle Hypertrophy
Thiede, Andrew W.
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A very important aspect of strength training is the athlete having the adequate muscle mass to successfully move a desired load. The body has developed a multitude of pathways that result in muscle hypertrophy, an increase in the size of muscle fibers. The focus of this research examined at looking at the mechanisms in which muscle hypertrophy occurs with the influence of training, nutrition and rest. Training induces microtrauma that displaces sarcomere fibers and through repair the effected muscle fibers grow larger in size. Also taken into consideration are factors like proper nutrition and rest that directly influence the rate of microtrauma repair. The nutrients that are consumed through diet and the hormonal response to food and rest give the body the resources needed to repair the muscle fibers. The principle of Specific Adaptations to Imposed Demands (SAID) defines the adaptation process as introducing a load on the body and the immune and muscular response the body elicits will cause adaptation so the next time the load is to be moved, the body is better fit to do so. A proper training program is required that increases the volume moved over a period of time to implement overload along with proper recovery of the CNS allowing supercompensation therefore making the individual stronger at the end of a training period compared to the start. The combination of an effective training program that implements overload followed by a period of recovery, guided by the intake of nutrients and sleep, will result in the development of increased muscle mass.