I have great respect for people who do high intensity workouts. Really. A ton. The methods are proven and the results are clear. Everyone who’s in the gym doing these types of workouts has invested in themselves. Nothing can take away the fact that they’ve earned a great body by putting in the work.
Why High Intensity Exercise Matters
At lower levels of exercise intensity your cardiovascular system is able to keep up with your body’s energy demands using an aerobic process. The intensity is low enough that there is plenty of oxygen available for working muscles. This is a good type of exercise, but it doesn’t provide the same benefits as anaerobic exercise.
High Intensity Generates Lactate
When you work out such that your breathing starts to become heavy and laboured, your cardiovascular system is losing its ability to generate energy based on available oxygen. A different group of muscle fibres gets activated and these produce energy anaerobically (i.e. in the absence of oxygen). It is the anaerobic energy production cycle that generates lactate as an important metabolite for your body.
High Intensity Training is Out of Reach for Many
Let’s be honest: the majority of people are not doing high intensity exercise. If you go for a walk in your neighbourhood, unless you’re huffing and puffing when you get back you’re not probably not crossing the anaerobic threshold. If you’re doing resistance training with low weights you can manage, you’re not getting into the high intensity range. The reality is most people rarely experience high intensity workouts. Some people would prefer to avoid the discomfort. Others, due to injury or age, are unable to lift heavy weights at all.
KAATSU Can Be a Solution
When you use KAATSU, you mimic the conditions in your body that the brain associates with high intensity training. The KAATSU air bands reduce the venous flow of blood from your limbs back to your heart, creating a mild, localized hypoxia (lack of oxygen) in the working muscles of the limb, even when working out with light weights or no weights. This tricks the body into thinking you’ve had a higher intensity workout and it responds by producing more growth hormone and other beneficial metabolites. The result is you grow muscle and strength without having to do high intensity workouts.
Results Without Suffering
KAATSU studies showed it’s possible to achieve double-digit leg strength increases in two weeks using 20% of your 1 rep maximum weight. (Click here for the post.) In the weightlifting world, this is a really light weight. How much work were they doing? Squats and Leg Curls, 3 sets of 15 reps, once in the morning and again in the afternoon. That’s 90 squats and leg curls a day using very light weights plus KAATSU.
When you’re using such light weights, you’re greatly decreasing or eliminating the microscopic muscle damage that typically occurs during high intensity strength training. This means the muscle soreness one might experience after high intensity training is much less or gone, allowing you to train the same muscles again the same day, as was done in this study.
Who Can Benefit Most From KAATSU?
Anyone who can’t or doesn’t want to do high intensity training can probably find benefit from using KAATSU. People are becoming more aware of the importance of maintaining muscle mass as they age in order to continue to live safely and healthily. To me, there is a huge opportunity for personal trainers to offer KAATSU training to people who wouldn’t otherwise be willing to set foot in a gym. And, of course, individuals who want to get the benefits of KAATSU can purchase units for their own home use.
Do you know someone who’s been wanting to work out to gain strength but has been hesitant? Please introduce them to KAATSU and let them know that there are options available that can help them achieve their strength and fitness goals.