Know Your Muscle Fibers Differences
There are three different kinds of muscle fibers.
Learn about your different muscle fibers in the article below.
The amazing body we have, with 400 plus muscles and thousands of muscle fibers are capable of making the most intricate and diverse movements and at different velocities, depending on the body’s need. Movements that are fast, slow, up, down, strenuous and much more. Our body is capable of so much, and what makes it possible is the type of muscle fibers we have
We have all heard the term Fast Twitch and Slow Twitch. If you haven’t heard of these then this article will explain what they are and how they work. The two types of fibers known as slow twitch and fast twitch are basically what your muscles are made up of. The slow twitch fiber has a high oxidative capacity there by allowing the muscle to perform high endurance actions, such as running a marathon. The fast twitch fiber has a much less oxidative capacity and there by is used in short bursts of energy such as power cleaning, or sprinting 100 meters.
These fibers are also known in a more easy and informative, the type I and type II respectively. Type I is the slow twitch, and type II is fast twitch. Type II, fast twitch, can also be dismembered in II a or II b in depending on the motor functions the muscle uses.
TYPE I – These are the slow twitch fibers which are generally responsible for the performance of distance runners and athletes; eg. (marathon runners, road cyclists, swimmers, long distances and so on.) The slow twitch or type I fiber contain many mitochondria and SDH enzyme (which is a metabolic accelerator) that is bulky and has high levels of myoglobin, which gives its red color.
This gives the fibers such a high performance of oxygen transport and is the base of many motor functions in the human mechanical platform. These fibers are also used in anaerobic (fast powerful actions) activities, These fibers play the majority of role in all action, whether it be aerobic, anaerobic, lactic and anaerobic alactic.
TYPE II – These muscle fibers have mostly anaerobic capacity. We say mostly because the Type II fiber can be split into two categories; type II a and type II b. The type II a fibers have the ultimate in anaerobic performance, being the true fast twitch fiber. Where as the type II b is a hybrid of the two fibers, in that it can perform and be trained as either fast twitch or slow twitch fiber. So, how is all this information useful?
Well we see different strengths in different people from all walks of life. When we see athletes perform incredible feats such as sprinting the 100 meter dash in under 10 seconds, or running a under 4 minute mile, we can easily see which ones are predominantly fast twitch and which are using slow twitch.
However the question still remains, can a marathoner become a sprinter and vice versa.
The answer so far has come up short. It is generally accepted that you are born with certain percentage of fast twitch and slow twitch muscle fibers, and that alone will determine your strengths. However there is still the mystery of the hybrid type II b fiber that baffles scientists. Could a person with majority of these muscle fibers choose either discipline and be successful in which ever they choose? This has still got to be answered.