In recent years, EMS training as a non-invasive fitness way has been more and more popular among fitness people, because it has a great result to enhance muscle activation, growth, and recovery.
But to many fitness newbies, EMS training is still a novel concept. Therefore, we will provide an overview of EMS training in this article, including what is it, how it works, and its benefits.
What is EMS training?
EMS (electric muscle stimulation or electric myostimulation) training is a type of physical therapy used to restore the function of muscles and nerve tissue after injury and is also used in body slimming treatments, among others. It utilizes low and mid frequency electric currents to significantly increase the body’s natural muscle contractions. As a result, more muscle fibres are activated when compared to conventional training methods. This technology has been used in the medical field for decades.
You can apply this training way to promote body sculpting, and weight loss, increase physical strength, and relax muscles.
How Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS) works?
As we all know, we control our muscles through the electrical signals. (These signals originate in your brain, travel down your spinal cord, through your motor nerves and to your muscles.)
Applied to this principle, we use professional EMS machines to generate electric currents to activate muscles. Electrodes are placed on the skin over the muscle groups being targeted, during an EMS session. The electrodes are connected to an EMS sculpting machine that sends electrical impulses through the skin and into the muscles. The mechanism of action is that the pulsed current passes through the tissues and the cell membranes rapidly accumulate electrically charged ions. This requires an excitatory process in the cell and, if acting on muscle or nerve tissue, is accompanied by a motor response. The intensity and frequency of the impulses can be adjusted based on the individual's fitness level and goals. These impulses cause muscles to contract in a shape similar to that characteristic of human movement.
The key difference to conventional training methods is that the electric stimulation allows for more muscle fibers to be activated during training. In short, more of the muscle is put to work. The intensity of this effect can be controlled through the regulation of the electric current itself and the performed exercises.
Benefits of EMS Training
Increase the Efficiency in Body Building and Fat Loss
EMS training can activate more deep muscle fibers and specific muscle groups compared to conventional training in less time, so you can achieve your body goals more quickly.
Save Your Time from Traditional Training Methods
If we use traditional training methods to sculpt our body, it may occupy 2~3 hours a day. However, EMS training sessions typically last between 20-30 minutes. It's a time-saving option without any doubt.
Targeted Specific Muscle and Increase the Training Efficiency
EMS can be used to target specific muscle groups, making it a valuable tool for individuals with imbalances or injuries. Additionally, EMS can activate more muscle fibers than traditional exercise methods.
Characteristics of Electrical Muscle Stimulation
The process of electrical muscle stimulation involves the application of electrodes to the treated skin surface, with their fixation position determined by specific instructions. The electrical muscle stimulation training itself does not cause physical pain; some patients have reported a tingling sensation. The intensity of the current can be adjusted to suit your tolerance, so any discomfort needs to be reported to your doctor.
A single session of electrical muscle stimulation training lasts from 10 to 30 minutes, depending on what needs to be treated. It usually consists of 7-15 sessions, and the doctor will tell the exact duration after studying the patient's case.
Electrical muscle stimulation training complements the main therapeutic processes, including drug exposure, physiotherapy exercises, and massage. With the help of electrical muscle stimulation, the positive effects obtained can be strengthened and consolidated.
You can attend electrical muscle stimulation sessions at home, in the hospital, and the clinic. We provide our patients with high-quality physiotherapy equipment. Modern electrical muscle stimulation equipment allows us to guarantee the safety and effectiveness of the treatment.
Before starting the treatment, a medical examination by a specialized physician is mandatory, which excludes possible contraindications and ensures the safety of the electrical muscle stimulation training.
The Effects of Electrical Muscle Stimulation On The Body
Electrical muscle stimulation affects the body intermittently due to pulses of different durations, due to different current strengths and frequencies. This effect is the same as the normal work of the muscles during activity, even though the patient is not active during the procedure. The current passes through the tissues, stimulating the cells and stimulating the active work of the muscle, putting the muscle during the pause.
Due to this working rhythm, the electric current does not irritate the skin or damage the epidermis. When the electric current acts on muscles or nerves, their biological activity changes. The impulse causes contraction of the muscle fibers, which strengthens and activates them. If the muscles are excessively tense, electrical muscle stimulation can be a good way to relieve this tension.
In neurological clinics, back electrical muscle stimulation training for patients with the immobile or curved spine can reduce pain, restore its sensitivity and exercise the muscles. Procedures in the rehabilitation phase after spinal surgery help strengthen the back muscles.
In sports, electrical muscle stimulation can enhance the strength and endurance of skeletal muscles and shorten the recovery period after training. In cosmetology, electrical muscle stimulation is an anti-aging, skin condition improvement, fat deposit elimination, and cellulite formation prevention method.
Electrical muscle stimulation of the lower limb muscles allows you to recover:
- Biceps femoris - restores flexion of the knee joint.
- calf muscles - contribute to the restoration of foot flexion.
- peroneus muscle - enhances dorsiflexion and abduction of the foot.
- Rectus femoris - improves leg extension of the knee joint.
Electrical stimulation of the hand muscles can be restored:
- Deltoid muscle - helps to restore the extension of the shoulder.
- Extensor muscles of the hand and fingers - restores extension.
- Triceps - improves extension of the arm in the elbow joint.
- Biceps - helps to flex the arm in the elbow joint.
- Flexors of the hands and fingers - improves their flexion.
In addition, electrical muscle stimulation of the thigh muscles helps to actively fight osteoarthritis and also helps to recover from joint replacement surgery. Electrical muscle stimulation training of the face accelerates the use of oxygen and reduces the energy cost of contractions. After heavy physical activity, the lactic acid buildup can lead to muscle soreness, and the electric current of electrical muscle stimulation removes it from the muscle, thus relieving the pain.
Indications for Electrical Muscle Stimulation
Originally developed to treat patients with atrophied muscle tissue, electrical muscle stimulation found its application in the aerospace field - restoring muscle strength after a period of weightlessness. Today, it is actively used to combat cosmetic problems such as obesity and cellulite, muscle and skin sagging, as an effective anti-aging method, and even as a "lazy physical exercise", where electrical muscle stimulation relieves muscle soreness without training.
Main indications for electrical muscle stimulation:
- For recovery after various injuries;
- Tissue swelling due to hypokinesis;
- Diseases of the peripheral and central nervous system with impaired generation and conduction of nerve impulses;
- Diseases of musculoskeletal structures -Postural irregularities of spinal curvature due to the weakness of spinal muscles;
- Muscle entrapment;
- Cardiovascular diseases - circulatory disorders, weak vascular tone;
- Weakness of muscular tissues of various localization - low tone of skeletal muscles (disease, hypokinesis), weak intestinal peristalsis, weakness of sphincter muscles (intestinal, urinary);
- Atrophy of muscular tissues;
- Paralysis, paralysis of certain parts of the body;
- Increased deposition of fatty tissues;
- Malnutrition of the skin and subcutaneous tissues.
Safety Measures and Precautions in EMS Training
While EMS is generally safe, there are some precautions that should be taken when using this technology. Individuals with pacemakers or other implanted medical devices should avoid EMS training. Additionally, individuals with epilepsy or a history of seizures should consult with their doctor before using EMS.
Readers are encouraged to explore EMS as a fitness option based on the numerous benefits outlined in this article. Whether you are an athlete looking to enhance your performance or an individual with limited time for workouts, EMS training can help you achieve your fitness goals more efficiently than traditional exercise methods.