Blood Flow Restriction: Crushing and getting Swole
Blood flow restriction therapy involves the use of a pneumatic cuff (tourniquet) proximally to the muscle that is being trained. In upper body it will be attached at armpit and in lower body at hip. Our physical therapist will inflate the cuff to a specific pressure with the aim of obtaining partial arterial and complete venous occlusion. Don't worry there is a specific calculation and it is safe. The patient is then asked to perform resistance exercises at a low intensity of 20-30% of 1 repetition max (1RM), with high repetitions per set (15-30) and short rest intervals between sets (30 seconds).
The goal of BFR training is to mimic the effects of high intensity exercise by recreating a hypoxic environment using a cuff. The cuff is placed proximally then low intensity exercises can then be performed. Due to the limitation of blood flow there is an increase in protons and lactic acid. The same physiological adaptations to the muscle will take place during the BFR training at low intensity exercise as would occur with high intensity exercise.
Studies have shown low intensity BFR training results in greater muscle circumference when compared with normal low intensity exercise. This can allow early rehab with better results.
This treatment option is available at all our locations by our Physical Therapists. Call us to learn more about this innovative technique.