What is the Muscle Confusion Workout?

Harriette Halepis

The muscle confusion workout is based upon the principle that constantly changing one's workout routine will prevent muscles from becoming used to particular exercises. When muscles reach the "plateau" stage, they no longer respond to exercises. Thus, by creating muscle confusion, muscles do not have a chance to reach the plateau mark. Unlike other workout routines that may last for many months, the muscle confusion workout is based upon a four week routine.

Woman exercising
Woman exercising

It is believed that muscles become used to a particular workout routine within a matter of weeks. Those who believe in the muscle confusion workout alter a workout routine every four weeks, so that muscles do not have time to adapt to repetitive movements. After a four week period, one's workout routine will be drastically altered.

A basic muscle confusion workout routine includes exercises that work most major muscles in a variety of ways. For example, one four week routine may include standard bicep curls, while another four week routine will replace standard bicep curls with preacher curls. Both exercises work the same muscle group, though each exercise is entirely unique. Between each muscle routine, a day of cardiovascular activity is often recommended.

In addition to free weights, cable machines and resistance bands are often added to a muscle confusion workout. Again, the idea behind using various types of weights is to provide a different kind of workout for each muscle group. It is also wise to change the number of repetitions and sets involved in a workout every four weeks.

Those who believe in the muscle confusion workout also believe that this kind of workout is the only way to progressively gain muscle strength. In addition to basic muscle confusion, it is also important that all people following this type of workout follow a healthy diet. Completing a muscle confusion workout will not provide results if a person does not eat properly in addition to gaining enough sleep each night.

Anyone wishing to try a muscle confusion routine should speak with a qualified physical fitness trainer prior to creating any program. This will ensure that the right kind of muscle confusion routine is practiced. Physical fitness experts recommend that a person following this type of routine commit to three to four days of exercise each week. Prior to attempting any kind of workout, it is best to speak with your medical doctor in order to avoid injury.

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