When you’re exercising, your muscles get tired.  They can get tired so that they’re fatigued or you can work them so hard that they don’t work anymore.  Well, they don’t work for a brief time.  This is called muscle failure.  It’s what you want.  That’s how you build strength in a muscle.  You take your muscles to failure.  Most people think you don’t want to do this, that it’s bad for a muscle to work it so hard that it stops working.  Nope, you wanna do that.  When you’re doing squats and you feel like you just can’t do another one because your legs don’t work anymore – you want to feel like that.  Don’t worry, your muscles will work again in about 30 seconds.  They’ll be really sore the next day or two but if you’re anything like me, you kinda like that feeling.  Same thing goes for after a stroke, you have a lot of retraining muscles to do, take them to failure.  Failure

Categories: Health, Rehab, Stroke stuff

Tags: , , , ,

7 replies

  1. I am a stroke survivor, and when I fatigue my atrophied muscles, they exhibit clonus; I can continue to use them, but they don’t work well.

  2. My therapists were so concerned about getting to tired muscles that we never got there.

  3. I try to do two things when exercising. Perform exercises that focus on form so I solidify the muscle memory. Once I get too tired to maintain proper form I switch to exercises that isolate the muscle and work the muscle to fatigue or failure. I want to develop good mechanical habits plus develop the muscle strength. I find that achieving the latter state taxes the mental ability. I know that if I achieve muscle failure I am going to be physically ill and I have to fight that feeling until I recover. That feeling is severe and can last for a minute or two. Knowing that feeling is going to happen and still pushing yourself to that point is the challenge. I do not push myself to that point every time but I have learned this; the mind quits before the body does. This will be the greatest mental challenge you will ever face. Good luck.


  1. Failure Again – mycerebellarstrokerecovery

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