When it comes to weight training, there are many forms of bro science out there – bad advice that has been passed down from generation to generation and is just straight up incorrect. So how do you sift through the myths to find the facts? It can be a difficult task. Some websites state one thing as fact while online forums claim the total opposite. But Muscle Club have developed a few handy tips with our Common Workout Myths Debunked article!
Here we give you a proper understanding of what is fact and what is fiction when it comes to working out, putting your mind at ease so you can get back to training without having to worry about whether your training style is killing your gains!
Squatting is bad for your knees
This is a myth as old as squats themselves. No matter what gym you go into, you are bound to find one person stating that squats are bad for your knees – even more so if you squat below parallel! The truth of the matter is that the only time squats are bad for your knees is when they are performed incorrectly or if you had any existing knee injuries, in which case it may aggravate that condition.
When performed correctly, squats will actually help to strengthen the surrounding muscles which support the knee, improving joint health and stability.
8–12 reps for muscle growth
Another common myth is that you must be hitting between 8 and 12 reps on every exercise for muscle growth. Now, this myth does have some merit. Many studies have shown that the ideal rep range for muscle hypertrophy lies between 8 and 12 reps. However, that’s not to discredit rep ranges both under and over this amount.
Performing under 8 reps per set can be a great way to build muscular strength, particularly on compound movements such as the deadlift. And while strength may not be your primary goal, short periods of strength training can be a great way to break through a training plateau.
On the other side of the equation, training over 12 reps can have many benefits, such as increasing muscular endurance. Some bodybuilders may even find that certain body parts respond particularly well to 12+ reps as opposed to under 12 reps.
Cardio kills your gains
But won’t cardio kill my gains? No. No, it won’t. Performing regular bouts of cardio will not interfere with your muscle growth whatsoever, provided it’s not excessive. If you choose to do cardio 7 days a week for an hour, then maybe you may interfere with your body’s ability to recover and grow optimally; however, performing 3–4 sessions of cardio throughout the week is likely to have only a positive effect on your training.
However, it is important to note that the timing of cardio is important. Studies have shown that performing HIIT sessions can actually impair muscular strength for up to 6 hours after the session is completed. So, basically, what this means is that if you want to do cardio, try doing it in the morning and your weights session in the afternoon, or do cardio after you’ve trained with weights.