Super Slow is a form of human strength training popularized by Ken Hutchins. The term SuperSlow and derivative terms are registered by Hutchins as trademarks. Super Slow involves the combination of very slow speeds of lifting and lowering the weight, along with the general principles of the High intensity training approach advocated by Arthur Jones.
The 10 second lifting, 10 second lowering repetition speed (slow resistance training), originally invented and patented by Dr. Vincent "Ben" Bocchicchio, was suggested to Ken Hutchins by Dr. Bocchicchio. Hutchins further developed the protocol during Nautilus-funded osteoporosis research at the University of Florida in the early 80's. However, similar methods have been used in body building circles since the 1940s under the name MC/MM or muscle contraction with measured movement.
The method incorporates very slow repetition speeds as compared to traditional resistance training methods, with emphasis on minimizing acceleration to reduce the force the body is exposed to during exercise and improve muscular loading. Super Slow workouts typically consist of one set of anywhere from as few as two to eight exercises, often primarily compound movements, performed with little rest in between. Ken Hutchins recommends performing each set for between 100 and 180 seconds. A frequency of twice weekly is recommended for most trainees, with even less frequency for more advanced trainees. Some research indicates that Super Slow produces superior results compared to traditional methods in as little as 10 weeks
Proponents claim the very slow repetitions are safer and more effective than conventional repetition speeds, however force gauge studies and mathematical models have shown no significant difference in peak force or resistance encountered over the full range of movement between traditional Nautilus 2/4 repetitions, moderately slow 5/5 repetitions, and the Super Slow 10/10 repetitions. The only two studies showing better results with Super Slow than traditional Nautilus training are flawed in a manner invalidating the results (rep speed was not strictly controlled for in any of the groups and strength testing procedures failed to account for differences in fatigue rates at different rep speeds). Other research shows no significant difference in outcomes with different repetition speeds when similar training loads and set durations are used.
Slow repetitions may be beneficial to trainees working around injuries or conditions requiring extra caution, and may be useful for practicing proper form when learning new exercises. Many personal trainers who have abandoned Super Slow for general use still use it as a method for teaching new exercises or evaluating clients' exercise form.
Similar methods include Fred Hahn's Slow Burn system and Adam Zickerman's Power of 10 method. However, Hahn's Slow Burn method does not subscribe to the 10/10 rep count, and uses of a weight load that renders muscle fatigue in 60–90 seconds.
- ↑ Westcott, WL et al. Effects of regular and slow speed resistance training on muscle strength. Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness. 41: 154-158,2001.
- Power of Ten: The Once - a - Week Slow Motion Fitness Revolution by Adam Zickerman, HarperCollins
- The Slow Burn Fitness Revolution: The Slow Motion Exercise That Will Change Your Body in 30 Minutes a Week by Fredrick Hahn