When you drive a car, do you realise that your foot knows where the breaks and gas paddles are without you even looking down?
That is called muscle memory.
Photo via Darebee
What is Muscle Memory?
Muscle memory is the act of committing a specific motor task into memory through repetition. While your muscles can’t actually remember anything, they are full of neurons attached to your nervous system that play a role in motor learning.
Any movement of the body requires brain activity, and repeating a movement, even complicated ones, enough times triggers recognizable patterns in your brain regions responsible for motor skills. Interesting, huh?
How long does it take to achieve Muscle Memory?
According to Trifecta Nutrition, apparently it takes roughly 10,000 hours to master a skill.
How does Muscle Memory work?
The phenomenon of Muscle Memory is most commonly discussed when looking at muscle atrophy - or when you stop training for long periods of time, resulting in potential muscle loss.
Many believe that muscle memory will allow you to regain muscle size and strength rather quickly, however, muscle memory is more the result of learned motor skills and less about muscle growth.
Now, if you ask a scientist, a neuroscientist or someone that studies muscles, they’ll tell you that muscle memory refers to the changes in muscle cells caused by exercise. It is as if the muscles remember the effects of exercise, even if you no longer regularly exercise.
Very interesting… Maybe that’s why we still remember how to ride a bike after all these years!
So, guys, whether you’re trying to work on a new skill or are trying to hit the gym again, thank your muscle memory for not making you start all over again!
By: Aishah Akashah Ahadiat