Hypertrophy - Hazle's Angle for Muscle Growth

By Matt Klein, Nov 16, 2021

Isolating Damage – The Henneman Size Principle

  • The Henneman size principle states that as more force is needed, motor units are recruited in a precise order according to the magnitude of their force output, with small units being recruited first, thus exhibiting task-appropriate recruitment.
  • The body naturally will distribute the workload over other areas of the muscle bundle and, therefore, isolation is the "suggested" best way to get into hypertrophy. Compound movements will not necessarily help with hypertrophy as it's the nerve to muscle connections of isolating the connections that is important over the distribution of those connections. This can also be described as the "Mind-Muscle connection"

Tips for Maximizing Damage

  • Hit the muscle in every way that it can contract (concentrically, eccentrically, and isometrically).
  • Focus on the length and speed of each contraction.
  • Pre-fatigue the muscle, with exercises like an isometric hold prior to the eccentric and concentric movements.
  • "Moderately" trained people are suggested to train at least 5 sets per week for maintenance. For hypertrophy, 15-20 sets per week is best to yield muscle growth, while also getting close to failure on 10% of the sets.
  • For experienced lifters, generating explosive power by moving weights fast changes the way the upper motor neurons communicate with lower motor neurons. Also known as the mind-body connection, this type of training creates more efficient neural circuits that generate better action potential. That, COMBINED with close to maximal weight, is proven to be ideal through the literature.
  • Interesting fact: Literature has proven that flexing your muscles in between sets (up to 30 seconds at a time) will lessen performance on the next set. BUT, because of local muscle metabolism, stress tension, and damage, nerve to muscle contraction improves in ways that increase hypertrophy!
  • Testosterone is said to be mediated by the nerve-muscle connection. Hypertrophy workouts could be up to 45min but should not exceed 60 minutes for most efficient use of testosterone. Ideal training protocols for testosterone have been shown to be ideal with exercises up to 6 sets of 10 reps, with 2min rest between sets.

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Matt Klein

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