Tens unit or electrical muscle stimulation is a treatment for chronic pain. It’s been used to relieve the pain from arthritis, backache, and sports injuries. Tens units have been around since the 1950s but have only gained popularity in recent years. This article will concentrate on how tens units build muscle by targeting the muscles with a controlled electronic pulse of electricity. This article will also give some background information about what a tens unit is and how it works.
The tens unit is also known as electromyography. It’s a method of physical therapy that uses electric pulses to stimulate muscles. Tens units are used to treat chronic pain, back pain, sports injuries, and physical rehabilitation. Studies have found that tens units can increase circulation and soften scar tissue. Some studies have also indicated that tens units can increase flexibility and the range of motion in joint movement.
How Does It Work?
A tens unit is a small portable machine with two electrodes attached to it. The electrodes are used to deliver a controlled electric pulse to a specific muscle. According to the manual that comes with the unit, the electrodes should be placed over the muscle. The pulse will enter one electrode and exit from another electrode. The device delivers a twenty-second controlled burst of energy every ten seconds.
Electrodes Help Deliver Electrical Pulses
Like other forms of physical therapy, tens units can be used for rehabilitation and maintenance of function following injury or stroke. It’s also used as one component of treatment for chronic pain. Tens units can also be used to supplement other forms of physical therapy like massage and exercise.
Studies on Electromyography as a Training Aid for Fitness
Many researchers have studied the effect of tens units on muscle strength and function. The studies show that tens units can increase muscle strength and aerobic capacity in less than six weeks and that more significant improvements in muscle strength were seen during the first 4 -6 weeks. The improvement in muscle strength was also more significant in muscle groups that are more difficult to exercise, like the back extensors (muscles located on the back).
A recent study conducted at the University of Bari in Italy found that using tens units reduces body fat. The study involved eleven obese women who completed a thirty-five-week program of aerobic exercise. The participants wore tens units for about an hour each day. The amount of fat that was lost was more incredible in the group that used the tens unit. Other studies have shown that tens units can reduce body fat and increase lean muscle mass.
Tens Unit and Muscle Building
Studies have shown a link between a muscle’s strength and its ability to stimulate other muscles to contract. Muscle tissue performs many functions, including movement, digestion, breathing, blood circulation, nerve transmission, and bone formation. Specific muscle groups like the thigh say stimulate movements in the lower leg, which requires the contraction of muscles in the buttocks and hips.
The exercise of the tens unit will help build muscle in these areas but can also directly stimulate specific muscles. The electrodes are attached to specific muscles. Therefore, the stimulation of a nerve from a specific electrode will send a signal to that muscle. This signal can then be felt like an electric pulse in the muscle and can cause muscle contraction.
When the muscle contracts, it pulls on the tendon attached to it. The pull of the tendon causes movement in another muscle group. This can be an indirect muscle to muscle contact or involve contact with other bones, tendons, or ligaments.
Muscle growth is caused by adding more units of proteins to cell units (called myofibrils). Studies show that tens units can stimulate myofibrillar protein synthesis (MPS), essential in building muscle mass. MPS is the synthesis of proteins that help repair damaged tissue, build new tissue, and bring about regulation of cell growth. The more muscle mass that is added to the body, the more MPS is needed.
Tips on How to Use a Tens Unit
Tens units are not toys. They should be used under medical supervision with quality equipment and good safety rules. It can take up to six months for muscles to gain full function after stimulation of tens units. The muscles will also continue to grow after the six months are up.
The electrodes must be appropriately placed on the skin. If they’re not, then you may feel a twitching or itching sensation instead of a burn. The electrodes should be placed horizontally on the area that is being worked out. The electrodes should not be placed diagonally across a muscle as this can cause burns and discomfort. If you experience these symptoms, then remove the electrode from your skin immediately.
The intensity setting on the tens unit will determine how much force is placed on the muscle during training. The more intense, the faster and more significant the effects will be. Beginners who are just starting using a tens unit should begin at low intensity and work their way up.
Beginners should also avoid using electrodes that others have previously used. Proper use of a new electrode is crucial for it to work effectively. There is a possibility that a new electrode could be contaminated with germs from a previous user. In addition, electrodes that have been on the market for a long time do not deliver as strong a pulse as a new electrode. They will also be less likely to stick to the skin during use.
It is a good idea to train a muscle a day or two after an injury. The muscle will be weaker, so it can recover faster and continue to recover at a faster rate. The muscle will also be less likely to be injured during exercise. It’s also a good idea to use tens units at night while you’re sleeping.
Tens units are a proven option for building muscle mass. It can also be used for maintenance once the muscles are built. It’s easy to use, doesn’t cause pain, and can be employed on most body parts. When appropriately used, tens units are an easy way to build muscle mass fast.