15 Facts About Muscle and Strength You May Not Know (2023)

As individuals begin to head back to the gym, the focus turns to building muscle and strength. Obtaining additional knowledge regarding both topics will only help your fitness cause.

Fifteen Facts Regarding Muscle and Strength

Muscle: Build and Preserve it as You Age

  • How fast can you build muscle? One study reported, that “high responders” were able to build an average of 4.5 kg of muscle mass (about 10 lbs.) after 12-weeks of a push-pull-legs strength training program (5x/week). The “low-responders” put on an average of 1.2 kg (2.6 lbs.) in that same time span.
  • Do you know the three types of muscle tissue found in the body? Cardiac muscle, skeletal muscle, and smooth muscle are their names, and they come in all shapes and sizes. There are approximately 650 muscles in the human body. Some reports cite more because they count “all” muscle. For example, the biceps brachii muscle has two heads, does this count as one or two muscles?
  • The gluteus maximus is the largest muscle in the body, the calf muscle can generate most force when used, and the jaw muscle exerts the most pressure.
  • Your muscles create at least 85 percent of your total body heat.
  • Ameta-analysis published inMedicine & Science in Sports & Exercisereviewed 49 studies of men ages 50 to 83 who did regular strength trainingand found that subjects averaged a 2.5-pound increase in muscle mass.
  • Research has shown three decades of age-related strength loss and two decades of age-related muscle loss, can be recovered or reversed within the first couple of months of starting a strength training program.

Additional Fun Facts About Muscle

  • Starting around age 30, we begin to lose as much as 3 to 5 percent of your muscle mass per decade.
  • The average women’s maximal strength is about 60 percent compared to the average man. When looking at the upper body, women average 25-55 percent of men’s average strength. The gap closes in the lower body, where women are 70-75 percent as strong as men.
  • Muscle is more dense that adipose tissue (fat) and takes up less space on the body. In terms of weight, muscle = 1.06 kg/liter and fat = 0.9196 kg/liter. This makes muscle tissue approximately 15 percent denser than fat tissue.
  • Skeletal muscle makes up approximately 40 percent of total bodyweight. Some researchers suggest that number could be even higher. According to Shephard, in Biochemistry of Physical Activity, the skeletal muscles – when considered collectively – form the largest of the body organs. About 28 kg (62 lbs.) in a 70-kg sedentary man. In terms of a low/high number, men are comprised of about 40-50 percent muscle mass while women are in the range of 30-40 percent. The single number most often sited in scientific research is 42 and 36 percent respectively for men and women.

Lastly…

  • According to biochemist and former CrossFit owner, Robb Wolf, PhD., building and maintaining lean muscle is the best thing you can do to optimize longevity. “There’s this guarantee of losing muscle mass, losing the ability for maximum power production, as we age that begins in our 30’s,” he explains. Research shows, you lose3 to 8 percent of muscle mass per decadeafter you turn 30, and even higher rate after age 60. The process called sarcopenia, or age-related muscle mass loss, that happens as you age; between the ages of 20 and 80, research has found you can actually lose40 percent of your muscle mass.

Strength: Use it or Lose it

  • Strength appears to peak between the ages of 25 and 35 and is maintained between ages 40-50. It then declines by 12-14 percent per decade after 50 years of age, according to research published by Doherty and colleagues.
  • According to research, individuals who do not strength train lose 5 to 7 pounds of muscle every 10 years. A by-product is a reduction in metabolism by about 50 calories a day. The loss of muscle becomes more pronounced as we continue to age. By the time we reach age 70, the muscular system has experienced a 40 percent loss of muscle tissue and a 30 percent decrease in strength.
  • An average women’s maximal strength is about 60 percent compared to the average man. When looking at the upper body, women average 25-55 percent of men’s average strength. The gap closes in the lower body, where women are 70-75 percent as strong as men.

In the End

Therefore, staying active and strength training regularly, early in life, builds a strong foundation, especially when trying to maintain muscle and strength later in life. The great thing is you can prevent the loss of muscle tissue and strength as you grow old. So it’s never too late to hit the gym and get involved in strength training.

Let Jefit Help Build Muscle and Strength

Try Jefit app, named best app for 2020 and 2021 byPC Magazine,Men’s Health,The Manualand theGreatist. The app comes equipped with a customizableworkout plannerand training log. In addition, the app has ability to track data, offer audio cues, and has a feature to share workouts with friends. Take advantage of Jefit’s exercise database for your strength workouts. Visit our members-onlyFacebook group. Connect with like-minded people, share tips, and advice to help get closer to reaching your fitness goals. Try one of the new interval-based workouts and add it to your weekly training schedule. Stay strong with Jefit as you live your fitness lifestyle.

References

Davidsen, PK., et al. (2011). Responders to resistance exercise training demonstrate differential regulation of skeletal muscle microRNA expression.
Journal of Applied Physiology.

(Video) What makes muscles grow? - Jeffrey Siegel

Shephard, RJ, (1984). Biochemistry in Physical Activity. Springfield, IL: Charles Thomas Publisher.

Doherty TJ, (2001). The influence of aging and sex on skeletal muscle mass and strength. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care 4:503-508.

Poon, L.W., Clayton, G., & Martin, P., et al. (1989). Individual similarities and differences of the oldest-old in the Georgia Centenarian Study. The Gerontologist, 29, 43.

Ivey, FM et al., (2000). The Effects of Age, Gender and Myostatin Genotype on the Hypertrophic Response to Heavy Resistance Strength Training.J. Gerontol: Med Sci55A: M641-M848.

(Video) What Losing Weight Does To Your Body And Brain | The Human Body

Mozaffarian D, Hao T, Rimm EB, Willett WC, and Hu FB, (2011). Changes in Diet and Lifestyle and Long-Term Weight Gain in Women and Men. New England J Med; 364:2392-2404.

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Michael Wood, CSCS

Michael Wood, CSCS, is a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist and Content Manager for JeFit app. Michael is a former Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach at the University of Connecticut and Exercise Physiologist at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University. He is the Founder of Michael Wood Fitness and was twice named "Top 100 Trainers in America" by Men's Journal and voted Best of Boston by Boston Magazine. Michael previously taught at the University of Connecticut and Boston University. He is the author of TBC30: 6 Steps to a Stronger, Healthier You.

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FAQs

What are the 10 examples of muscular strength? ›

Examples of muscle-strengthening activities include:
  • lifting weights.
  • working with resistance bands.
  • heavy gardening, such as digging and shovelling.
  • climbing stairs.
  • hill walking.
  • cycling.
  • dance.
  • push-ups, sit-ups and squats.

What 3 things do muscles do? ›

Muscles allow a person to move, speak, and chew. They control heartbeat, breathing, and digestion. Other seemingly unrelated functions, including temperature regulation and vision, also rely on the muscular system. Keep reading to discover much more about the muscular system and how it controls the body.

What are 5 benefits of muscular strength? ›

Benefits of Muscular Strength and Endurance
  • Increase your ability to do activities like opening doors, lifting boxes or chopping wood without getting tired.
  • Reduce the risk of injury.
  • Help you keep a healthy body weight.
  • Lead to healthier, stronger muscles and bones.
  • Improve confidence and how you feel about yourself.

What muscle is the strongest? ›

The strongest muscle based on its weight is the masseter. With all muscles of the jaw working together it can close the teeth with a force as great as 55 pounds (25 kilograms) on the incisors or 200 pounds (90.7 kilograms) on the molars.

What is a interesting fact about muscles? ›

There are approximately 650 muscles within the body, in comparison there are just over 200 bones in the skeleton. 7. The largest muscle in the body is found in the buttocks. The Gluteus maximum is one of the most crucial muscles for walking and maintaining an upright body in standing & during movement.

What is the largest muscle? ›

What Is the Largest Muscle in the Body? The largest muscle in the body is the gluteus maximus. Located at the back of the hip, it is also known as the buttocks.

What are the 3 muscular strength? ›

The three main types of muscular contraction used in strength and endurance training are of specific note: isotonic, isometric and isokinetic.

What are the 5 components of muscular strength? ›

The push up test is most often used to test muscular strength. Muscular endurance is the ability of the muscles to perform continuous without fatiguing.
...
The 5 components that make up total fitness are:
  • Cardiovascular Endurance.
  • Muscular Strength.
  • Muscular endurance.
  • Flexibility.
  • Body Composition.

What are 4 examples of muscular endurance? ›

Muscular endurance activities include:
  • sustained walking or running.
  • cycling.
  • resistance training.
  • calisthenics.
  • swimming.
  • circuit training.
  • aerobics and dance.
  • rope climbing.
18 Sept 2020

What are the 8 benefits of strength training? ›

Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of strength training and how to add it to your fitness routine.
  • Increases lean muscle mass and strength. ...
  • Strengthens bones. ...
  • Reduces your risk of injury. ...
  • Promotes heart health. ...
  • Lowers your risk of chronic diseases. ...
  • Supports healthy weight loss or management. ...
  • Improves brain health.
28 Apr 2022

What are 10 benefits of muscular strength and endurance? ›

Benefits of muscular endurance training

helping maintain good posture and stability for longer periods. improving the aerobic capacity of muscles. improving the ability to carry out daily functional activities, such as lifting heavy items. increasing athletic performance in endurance-based sports.

What is the weakest muscle? ›

The Stapedius, the smallest skeletal muscle in the human body, which is about 1 mm in length, is regarded to be the weakest muscle. It originates from a prominence known as the pyramidal eminence at the posterior edge of the tympanic cavity. It inserts into the stapes' neck.

What is the smallest muscle? ›

Stapedius muscle is termed to be the smallest skeletal muscle in human body, which has a major role in otology. Stapedius muscle is one of the intratympanic muscles for the regulation of sound.

Is brain a muscle? ›

As it turns out, your brain isn't actually a muscle. It's an organ — one that actually plays a huge role in controlling muscles throughout your body. Muscle is made up of muscle tissue, which is muscle cells grouped into elastic bundles that contract together to produce motion and/or force.

What are the five most important muscles? ›

Here are the 5 most important muscle groups you should know about:
  1. Shoulder and back muscles. Slouching over our screens and sitting too much makes it crucial to work your shoulder and back muscles. ...
  2. Chest and arm muscles. ...
  3. Abdominal muscles. ...
  4. Leg muscles. ...
  5. Calves muscles.

Which muscles work all the time? ›

Smooth Muscles

You can't control this type of muscle. Your brain and body tell these muscles what to do without you even thinking about it. You can't use your smooth muscles to make a muscle in your arm or jump into the air. But smooth muscles are at work all over your body.

Why don't we use 100% of our muscles? ›

If we were to exert our muscles to or beyond their absolute maximum, we could tear muscle tissue, ligaments, tendons and break bones, leaving us in dire straits.

Is tongue a muscle? ›

The tongue is an extremely movable set of muscles, which is well-supplied with blood and has many nerves. The tongue muscles have an oblong shape and are covered with a dense layer of connective tissue.

What muscle is found only in the heart? ›

Cardiac muscle cells are located in the walls of the heart, appear striped (striated), and are under involuntary control. Smooth muscle fibers are located in walls of hollow visceral organs (such as the liver, pancreas, and intestines), except the heart, appear spindle-shaped, and are also under involuntary control.

What is the strongest part of your body? ›

The thigh bone is called a femur and not only is it the strongest bone in the body, it is also the longest. Because the femur is so strong, it takes a large force to break or fracture it – usually a car accident or a fall from high up.

What affects muscle strength? ›

Muscle strength is directly dependant upon the size of the cross-sectional area of muscle, so if after a period of training, you increase your muscle size by 50%, you will also increase the force the muscle can develop by 50%.

What are the 4 principles of muscular strength? ›

Its components are frequency, intensity, type, and time, combined with progression.

How do muscles get stronger? ›

After you workout, your body repairs or replaces damaged muscle fibers through a cellular process where it fuses muscle fibers together to form new muscle protein strands or myofibrils. These repaired myofibrils increase in thickness and number to create muscle hypertrophy (growth).

What are the 8 sources of strength? ›

The Sources of Strength Wheel is composed of eight categories that we can draw strength from: Family Support, Positive Friends, Mentors, Healthy Activities, Generosity, Spirituality, Physical Health, and Mental Health.

What is Max strength? ›

Maximal strength is the ability to exert force upon an external object. This attribute is typically measured by a 1 rep max on a barbell based exercise such as a squat or press. Maximal strength is essentially a measure of how much force your body can exert, or in simpler terms: how strong you are.

What builds the most strength? ›

When it comes to muscle-strengthening exercise, focus on things like dumbbells, resistance bands, resistance machines, and bodyweight exercises such as push-ups, squats and lunges. Another thing to keep in mind: Your weekly workouts should engage all of the major muscles in your body.

What are explosive muscles called? ›

Commonly known as fast twitch muscle fibers, these fibers have a high level of force output, contract at a high rate, and fatigue much quicker than Type I fibers. Type II fibers are used for powerful and explosive movements.

What is simple strength? ›

Simple Strength is a book about developing efficiency of movement through practice and training of the three basic human movements, the push up, the squat, and the back bend.

What is greatest strength example? ›

Example Answers to “What Is Your Greatest Strength?” Interview Question. “I pride myself on my excellent time management skills, ability to self-edit, and my attention to detail. Working as a writer for a local newspaper, I had to be able to effectively make use of my time in order to meet deadlines.

What are 2 benefits of strength training? ›

Strength training can help you manage or lose weight, and it can increase your metabolism to help you burn more calories. Enhance your quality of life. Strength training may enhance your quality of life and improve your ability to do everyday activities. Strength training can also protect your joints from injury.

What is muscle strength used for? ›

Much research supports the notion that greater muscular strength can enhance the ability to perform general sport skills such as jumping, sprinting, and change of direction tasks. Further research indicates that stronger athletes produce superior performances during sport specific tasks.

What are the 3 phases for strength? ›

The primary phases are broken into: stabilization, strength, and power. Within these high-level phases of training, there are sub-phases including stabilization endurance, strength endurance, hypertrophy (muscle growth), max strength, power, and max power.

What are the 7 concepts of physical fitness? ›

JERRY Diaz, a certified National Academy of Sports Medicine personal trainer, said there are seven principles of exercise: individuality, specificity, progression, overload, adaptation, recovery, and reversibility.

What are the 6 types of skill related fitness? ›

There are six skill-related fitness components: agility, balance, coordination, speed, power, and reaction time. Skilled athletes typically excel in all six areas. Agility is the ability to change and control the direction and position of the body while maintaining a constant, rapid motion.

What exercises improve speed? ›

6 Exercises that Can Really Improve Athletic Speed
  • Lunges. Lunges are great exercises that can help improve many areas of your body including hips, legs, and inner core. ...
  • Run Several Sprints in a Row. ...
  • Side Throws. ...
  • Forward/Backward Shuffles and Side Throws. ...
  • Reactive Crossovers and shuffles. ...
  • Jump Rope.
10 Mar 2018

What are the 5 types of endurance? ›

What are the types of endurance training?
  • Basic endurance. Basic endurance is when you increase your heart rate by between 60 and 70%. ...
  • Tempo endurance. Tempo endurance is when you increase your heart rate by 75 – 85%. ...
  • Maximal endurance. ...
  • Lactic speed endurance. ...
  • Alactic speed endurance.
18 Aug 2022

What are 5 important major muscles in your body? ›

To achieve these benefits, it is important to know the body's five (5) major muscle groups. Chest, Back, Arms & Shoulders, Abs, Legs & Buttocks and their functions.

What is the strongest muscle? ›

The strongest muscle based on its weight is the masseter. With all muscles of the jaw working together it can close the teeth with a force as great as 55 pounds (25 kilograms) on the incisors or 200 pounds (90.7 kilograms) on the molars.

What is the most important thing about muscles? ›

Healthy muscles let you move freely and keep your body strong. Healthy muscles let you move freely and keep your body strong. They help you to enjoy playing sports, dancing, walking the dog, swimming, and other fun activities.

Which muscles are the biggest? ›

The largest muscle in the body is the gluteus maximus. Located at the back of the hip, it is also known as the buttocks.

Is heart a muscle? ›

Your heart is actually a muscular organ. An organ is a group of tissues that work together to perform a specific function. In the case of your heart, this function is pumping blood throughout your body. Additionally, the heart is largely made up of a type of muscle tissue called cardiac muscle.

What are 4 important functions of muscles? ›

The muscular system consists of various types of muscle that each play a crucial role in the function of the body. Muscles allow a person to move, speak, and chew. They control heartbeat, breathing, and digestion.

Is the tongue a muscle? ›

The tongue is an extremely movable set of muscles, which is well-supplied with blood and has many nerves. The tongue muscles have an oblong shape and are covered with a dense layer of connective tissue.

What muscle is trap? ›

The trapezius is a muscle that starts at the base of your neck, goes across your shoulders and extends to the middle of your back. The trapezius (traps muscle) helps you move your head, neck, arms, shoulders and torso. It also stabilizes your spine and helps with posture.

What muscle needs the most work? ›

So which muscles need the most attention? You may have already guessed it, but the answer is the core muscles. The core is more than just the abdominals. The core group of muscles consist of the abs (all of them – including the obliques and deep transverse abdominus), the back, the glutes, and upper legs.

How many muscles does it take to smile? ›

Most of the 43 muscles we use to smile are under the control of the seventh cranial nerve. This is also referred to as the facial nerve.

What is muscle made of? ›

An individual muscle fibre is made up of blocks of proteins called myofibrils, which contain a specialised protein (myoglobin) and molecules to provide the oxygen and energy required for muscle contraction. Each myofibril contains filaments that fold together when given the signal to contract.

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