Isotonic Vs Isometric Exercises – Which One is For You?

If you are an enthusiast of working out, you are probably very familiar with the term isotonic exercises. If not, well, at least you have been doing it over and over each time you work out. Isotonic exercises refer to the ones where you move your muscles, often with weights, in order for it to contract. You do this by using dumbbells, stationary gym equipments, or simply by walking or doing pushups.

Another type of exercise, though, is isometric exercise. This is done by contracting the muscles without it shortening or lengthening, such as when you try to lift a heavy object and you cannot lift it up, or pushing against the wall that you cannot move. Your muscles are in a fixed state but they are contracting.

Some people or workout materials may tell you that one exercise is better than the other. Each actually has its own advantages over the other. You may do only one or both at the same time. How are they different from each other?

Isotonic exercise, from its name, gives approximately equal tension on the muscle groups while it is contracting or lengthening. With repetition and enough tension, the muscles develop in size, that is why it is a favorite among body builders. The broad range of isotonic exercises available are meant for many major muscle groups. It also takes boredom out of working out since there are many varieties of exercises available. More importantly, isotonic exercises are good for the heart and for the joints as well.

Isometric exercises, on the other hand, are best for building and toning muscles since it enables maximum muscular contraction. If isotonic exercises can be done with cheap equipment, simple isometric exercises can be done with no equipments necessary. It can strengthen muscle groups better but this is only limited to certain muscles. This exercise is best if you want certain muscle groups, your arms and chest for example, to be very strong. This is also good for those who want strong and toned muscles without the bulk of a weight lifter.

Either one has its advantages and disadvantages. If you require a specific type of exercise, you can ask professional help, at least for the first few steps, just so you are sure that you are doing it correctly and safely.