Our expert says:
You don't necessarily get stiff in order to see change. Stiffness happens because a muscle is not used to the load it is being placed under, and it has to involve a very specific type of muscle contraction, called an eccentric contraction. What you're doing is an exercise that you've become familiar with, your muscles are able to withstand the physical changes that cause stiffness. That doesn't mean you're not getting the benefit - the burn and ache WHILE you train is evidence of that.
I think you'd find that if you went down in weight and did say 25 reps, you might get stiff (because you'd do each movement faster and that loads the muscle differently), and if you increase the weight to say 4kg and do fewer reps, you'd also see a difference. But as I say, as long as you're getting stronger, you're still getting the training benefit, so you don't need to force stiffness in order to get some benefit.
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