This question is two parts.

First, can tightening your muscles repeatedly increase their strength similarly to lifting weights? Second, if this is true, can electrical stimulation of the muscles make this happen automatically?

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    Not sure, but would this question do better on Fitness SE. This doesn't seem to be about health, but about exercise and fitness. The question does seem answerable though.
    – Pobrecita
    Jun 6, 2016 at 22:33

1 Answer 1


To answer your first question: no. If done correctly, isometric contractions of any muscle WILL cause an increase in strength, but it will not be comparable to the increase in strength from lifting weights. Whether your goal is pure strength or hypertrophy, you need to break down the muscle tissue by taking it to its absolute limits, and with the absence of a load you won't be doing that. Again, it's not to say that isometric contractions are completely useless, but you will probably not see any significant changes in muscle size from it.

And to answer your second question, EMS by itself probably wouldn't do much, but combined with a proper training regime it could potentially be a useful tool.

  • The OP is not asking about hypertrophy gains, but strength gains.
    – JohnP
    Jun 9, 2016 at 22:02
  • I addressed both, please read my answer more carefully.
    – Pearu
    Jun 9, 2016 at 22:05

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