While it is speculated that there may be many sorts of muscle fibres, it is generally accepted that there are at least two sorts: fast twitch and slow twitch.
In order to build muscle size, it is advised that both are exercised, as both will contribute to overall size.
But, what exactly do you have to do to build up your fast twitch muscle, and, why would you want to do such a thing?
Well, aside from size which I’ve already mentioned, it may be desirable to build up your fast twitch muscle fibres if you participate in sports in which speed is required. Because, that is what fast twitch muscle fibres do: give you that explosive power.
Whether you are a boxer looking for that extra speed in your jab, or adding power for that knockout blow, or you are a footballer wanting more sprinting speed – training the fast twitch muscle fibres is the way to go.
Right, here’s how we do it.
To isolate the fast twitch muscle fibres, we need to train under a more anaerobic environment (without oxygen.) No, I’m not saying you should hold your breath deliberately, that won’t do anything but make you go blue and pass out. What I’m saying is, you need to train explosively.
Think of it as a 100 metre sprint. The movement is so fierce, so explosive, that steady breathing isn’t really part of the deal. It’s over very quickly, using only the oxygen that is in the muscles already. That is how we train the fast twitch muscle fibres.
Power training is the only kind of weight training which will give you explosive strength, very heavy weight and low repetitions (as low as 1 repetition, up to 5 repetitions). Compound movements, such as bench pressing, dead lift, power clean are the best to do this.
A word of warning: Before you delve into the world of power training, I highly advise that you learn the precise and safe technique for each exercise. If you can find an experienced coach to teach you then all the better. Generally, it’s not advisable that you perform power training on your own, and have somebody there at all times to help keep you safe.
You should also tape precautions to ‘wrap’ the joints to maintain pressure within the joint capsules.