Electric muscle stimulation versus traditional strength training methods have rapidly expanded in popularity in recent years. More than just a simple bandwagon fad, EMS has been used ever since the 1950s in clinical settings for certain types of injuries and to help in the rehabilitation of patients post surgery.
The benefits of using EMS for muscle strengthening are often the subject of debate with no clear-cut evidence to support either argument. When trying to figure out for yourself if EMS is worth trying, you’ll need to weigh the pros and cons as well as levels of evidence for and against to make your decision.
In this article, we’ll cover a case study on one patient who received EMS therapy. We’ll also take a look at different kinds of electric muscle stimulation devices and the types of exercises that can be performed with each type.
Simply put, the most popular muscle stimulation machines available in the market today are: Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) Stimulators, electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) and functional electrical stimulation (FES) machines.
EMS And FES are similar in the sense that they both use electrical stimulation. TENS is a different kind of device altogether that directly stimulates nerves.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is the best electric muscle stimulator?
Muscle stimulation works by targeting the nervous system and activating the muscle. It causes a slight muscle twitch, or spasms and vibrating to work the muscle. The nervous system then remembers the twitching and vibrating, and will then tell the muscle to start performing this movement when needed in the future.
Once the muscle is stimulated, it will also help increase circulation. This will bring nutrients to the muscle and also flush out waste. Improving the oxygen and blood flow is the key to great muscle tone. Workouts, such as running or by tubing up hills can achieve this to an extent. However, if you workout and do not wash the lactic acid away and let the blood flow in, then your body will not be able to recover as designed. So while working out is a must to keep your muscle tone from withering away, it is not enough. The best muscle stimulator trains the muscle by reactivating the nerve system with a low-level impulse.
Can you build muscle with electrical stimulation?
With the right electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) device, you can. The process sends tiny electrical pulses to your muscle fibers, and this stimulates the muscle cell to contract. The contraction itself is what creates the pump effect that drives the muscle growth; it is not the external contractions of your muscles as you workout with the EMS device.
After you use an EMS device for several weeks, you should see a noticeable increase in muscle size and strength. While what you’re doing with the EMS machine is actually very similar to working with weights, it’s not exactly the same.
Do electronic muscle stimulators really work?
Electronic muscle stimulators work by simulating muscles movements. The machine applies mild pulses directly to the target muscles for a specific amount of time. The machine can be set to provide a stronger or weaker muscle stimulation.
There are two main types of muscle stimulators:
- Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulators (TENS) which provide electrical stimulation to the nerve endings in the skin
- Electrical Neuromuscular Stimulators (EMS) which provide electrical stimulation to the targeted muscles
There are many other names for muscle stimulators, but these are the most basic types. Knowing the difference between those two types is crucial because each has its own pros and cons.
Electrical Neuromuscular Stimulators are the most common ones on the market. These are commonly used by professional athletes that require increased stimulation of their muscles during a workout.
What is the best Tens & EMS combo machine available?
I’ve tried over a dozen different models and brands, and the reason I settled with the HealthmateForever YK15AB Tens & EMS Combo Machine is because it’s the best one available.
It’s a bit more expensive than the other models I’ve tried, but it’s got all the important features. It has 40 programs (most EMS machines have a maximum of 20). It is easy and comfortable to use, and offers both modes of therapy. Unlike other machines I’ve tried, this one doesn’t have an intensity setting, but I don’t see that as a big deal because you can adjust intensity yourself with the provided pads (higher intensity equals less time).
The best TENS unit reviews can help you make an informed decision about which tens unit to get for all your aches and pains. By reading this guide; you can be sure you are getting the best machine for your own specific issues. Knowing how different machines work and where you can get the best prices can help you pick one that is perfect for you.