Nerves of Steel


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Nerves of Steel

Weight training strengthens more than your muscles. It also builds a key part of your nervous system.

 

Lifting weights develops a primitive and ancient part of the neural network called the reticulospinal tract, which carries information from brain to peripheral body parts.

 

The reticulospinal tract is critical to movement, posture control and orientation in space.

 

So all those reps actually beef up the neural pathway to your muscles.

 

These cutting-edge findings were revealed in a study published in the Journal of Neuroscience in June 2020 by scientists at the Institute of Neuroscience at Newcastle University in England.

 

They trained two female macaque monkeys to pull a weighted lever with their right arms to get  treats.

 

Throughout three months of research, the monkeys’ right-side nerves sent progressively stronger signals to the muscles while the left was static. In fact, the nerve impulses grew more powerful before the muscles got bigger.

 

Monkeys obviously aren’t people, but all primates, including humans, have fundamentally similar nervous systems.

 

So when you weight train, you are also boosting an all-important neural network.


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