The Muscle Pump – Does Chasing the Pump Help with Muscle Growth?

The Muscle Pump – Does Chasing the Pump Help with Muscle Growth?


The magical muscle “pump.” As eloquently as Arnold put it, it can be
quite a pleasurable sensation. But does it have any benefits to your actual
muscle gains? Let’s dig straight to the science. When lifting weights, or really any other
force producing mechanical function, muscle tension and contraction is created. Blood flow increases to the working muscles,
filling it with nutrients needed for contractile force against the active resistance. Simultaneously, muscle contraction occludes
the veins of the working muscles, constricting the amount of blood and byproducts being removed. The blood plasma concentration thereby increases,
filling the interstitial spaces around the muscle, raising its extra-cellular pressure
gradient. The increased gradient ultimately causes a
rush of blood flowing into the muscle cells, causing a swelling effect, aka “the pump.” In short, a pump is achieved by keeping your
muscles under resisted tension and decreasing rest. This means mucho blood into the muscle and
not so mucho blood leaving it. But are bodybuilders really seeing any hypertrophy
benefits from chasing the pump? Research so far is pointing towards the direction
of: it might. One theory looks at osmotic changes within
the cell, or increased cell hydration. Cell hydration, such as increased blood flow
from lifting, can act as a regulator for protein accretion, meaning with greater hydration,
muscle protein synthesis is stimulated while reducing protein breakdown. Fast-twitch type 2 muscle fibers, in particular,
are extremely sensitive to changes in cell hydration. Fast-twitch fibers carry a much greater potential
for growth compared to their slow-twitch counterpart, lending to the possible benefit of pump-induced
hypertrophy. The other pump theory of muscle growth deals
with the structure of the cells themselves. The increased swelling from the pump causes
the cell’s membrane to heavily expand, threatening the membrane’s integrity, thus threatening
cell survival. In response, the cell begins reinforcing its
cellular structure and activating anabolic pathways similar to that of mTOR. Increasing mTOR-like pathways mean potentially
increasing muscle growth. Along with this, studies also suggest that
the increased blood flow improves amino acid transport to the targeted cells, furthering
along the potential for growth. On top of these theories is also the fact
that achieving a pump is a pretty good indicator of proper muscle engagement. You know you’re working the right muscle if
the muscle achieves a pump. So research looks bright for the pump, but
it’s not definitive. More future studies are needed to guarantee
its effects. But if you want to achieve the pump, here
are things to consider. First, remember that it’s all about creating
constant tension. The pump is based on maintaining muscle blood
accumulation to the point of excess swelling, which is achieved through increased “time
under tension.” You can manipulate time under tension in multiple
ways. One is actually avoiding something you’ve
probably been taught to do, and that’s lifting through the full range of motion. Usually, both ends of a range of motion will
create opportunity for diminished tension. With the biceps curl as an example, you can
see the tension on the biceps in the beginning is close to zero. As you move along the range, tension increases,
reaching its highest point at the middle, and then again decreasing close to zero at
the top. Instead of going full range of motion, stopping
just before reaching the top and bottom of the range can better assure you maintain tension. And the type of exercise matter as well, as
some creates tension in its entire range of motion while others will have varying tension
throughout. The next is sustaining tension long enough
to create an effective pump. In the reps and sets video, you will see that
8-12 reps are considered optimal for building muscle, and its further reinforced with the
chase of the pump. 8-12 reps with a moderately heavy weight tend
to elicit an effective intensity and time under tension for pump promotion. Decreasing rest time between sets to somewhere
between 30-60 seconds is also important to maintain swelling. And finally, you can also utilize methods
such as drop sets and pyramids, where you decrease the weight you’re lifting within
a single set. As you exhaust lifting your starting weight,
you can subsequently reduce the load with a help of spotters and proceed to get in more
reps within the set. If done right, your muscles will feel like
bursting from your skin. Pump game successful. Give it a shot and see if it works for you. Enjoying these weekly PictureFit videos? Then please come support the channel on Patreon! Help not only improve the quality of the videos,
but also the chances of more frequent uploads in the future. Please like and share the video if you enjoyed
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100 Replies to “The Muscle Pump – Does Chasing the Pump Help with Muscle Growth?”

  1. I don't think some of that information was correct. Blood itself does not go into the muscle cells however nutrients and fluids do move into the cells themselves. If blood were inside the cell of another it would effectively destroy one of the other or both cells.

  2. Do three weeks cut with only veggies carbs, then two refeed days something similar bb do prior to competition, i guarrantee you youll feel like god, and manage too achive pump arnold is talking about. Downsides of achiving it before you refeed is moodines, feeling like you are dying, low sex drive, posibble crime commiting. Avoid other people for that three weeks and youll be just fine.

  3. compounds go full range of motion LOW REPS Heavy weight for strength..everything else go for the pump if you are natty

  4. Earlier today at the gym I got a really tight feeling in my middle arms like around the elbow, didn't know it was, guessing it was this from how people describe it. Weird that the day I feel it is the day I find out what it actually was though.

  5. Idk man, in my opinion tho, you never give up full range of motion to chase the pump. Always do full range of motion to tear muscle fibers

  6. The pump does make you grow cause more blood more ripped tissues more ripped tissues more to repair more repaired tissue more tissue overall the pump is growth if u get massive pump u will grow massive muscles

  7. There are some inconsistent numbers between videos.

    This video says 30-60 sec rest between sets, but your video on rest says studies support 3 min rests.

    Should you issue corrections in older videos via youtube overlays to eliminate confusion?

  8. It's psychological and keeps you going so you end up workout out harder. Music has no effect on muscle growth either, but the motivation helps. Just my theory

  9. Hahaha I love all the videos, I do. I think it's hilarious though that everyone says, "science says… Maybe," or, "do whatever you like better." Haha it's great 😂

  10. Rich Piano said that pumping the muscle stretches the muscle tissue so it can rebuild in that stretched state. In my head it works a lot like stretching splits for long periods of time. You are stretching the muscles they tear down and rebuild in that longer position gaining flexibility. The same idea should be applicable in revers right? It makes sense in my head but then again that is how broscience was started so Id like to see where the science actually ends up.

  11. The tension bullshit argument needs to die. If you are properly contracting your muscles the tension will always be on the muscle, especially at the top of a bicep exercise.

  12. Sir could you make a video regarding mass gainers is it really effective for lean muscle gain or whey protein is better. Thanks. Great videos

  13. *beacuse arnold won 5 times in a row, what he says is the truth, he is the son of the musscel god. drink from his wisdom and you will become big. all other people are bull shiters.

  14. Didn’t know about the pump before this but I love the pump whenever I workout. Makes me feel bigger and stronger

  15. Jeeeez….the bigger the pump the better the increase in volume…it just works…no science needed…prooven millions of times by observation

  16. Plz ans me,,,,,, My muscle still pump even after my workout ,,I can feel the pump even after my workout ,,is it good or bad???

  17. I agree with everything but I also feel like the "pump" is simple motivation to keep going. That feeling that you can do one more rep and "shock" the muscle as Arnold says. Just motivation that you can lift heavier and get stronger

  18. 1:01 "Rush of blood flowing into the muscle cells" – I don't think muscle cells absorb red blood cells though. Wouldn't it only absorb blood plasma?

  19. Iv been doing like ten, reps two steps befor my max wt..i find that my pump is growing, butt most important iv got great mussle tone..witch is what I'm looking for..as well as getting stronger..i see guys who are 25 years old. All pumped up..im 56 and I'm stronger than they are..

  20. honestly i actually find the pump very uncomfortable. like, yeah, there's some element of satisfaction due to the reinforcement that I'm exercising correctly, but it's kind of annoying having an erection for a while, let alone one in your arm.

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