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The Mind-Muscle Connection

In this episode we were joined with special guest and junior doctor Jubilent Amalendran to discuss to what extent we have mental control over our muscles and movement.


How can conscious control of our movement effect our muscles? Can this be utilised in physical training to maximise gains?


"Importance of mind-muscle connection during progressive resistance training"

Joaquin Calatayud et al. (2015)


"The mind–muscle connection in resistance training: friend or foe?" Israel Halperin & Andrew D. Vigotsky (2016)

"Differential effects of attentional focus strategies during long-term resistance training"

Brad Shoenfeld et al. (2018):

An internal focus on muscle usage during resistance training led to greater increases in strength and muscle size (hypertrophy) in the upper body but not lower body. Humans may have an enhanced mind-muscle connection with upper body (arm) muscles, such as the arms, which are more important for fine motor skills, unlike lower body (leg) muscles.


To what extent is movement a reflection of mental state?


Botox reduces your ability to both express emotions and embody emotions:

"The interactions between botulinum-toxin-based facial treatments and embodied emotions" Michael Lewis (2018)


Amy Cuddy's TED talk on body language and power poses:


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