Observations on Pavel's Irradiation


New Member
Having read about Pavel's theory of irradiation in T-mag some time ago, I played with the idea a little bit with my big lifts like DL and leg presses, primarily as a way to keep my core strong and to prevent injuries.

I haven't really thought about it or used it much recently until reading some of Jules' recent posts. Having employed it with most all my lifts this week, all I can say is WOW!!!

I definitely noticed a pronounced increase in neural drive
What I like at least as much is how it locks my joints into a proper position. I got virtually none of my usual rotator cuff complaints and not a sqawk out of my old back injury.

Anyway, this worked so well for me, I thought it deserved its own thread. Here is Jules' explanation, short and sweet, from the optimizing thread:

<<Squeeze the bar, curl the toes

Most of the arguments between plane of movement, machine vs. free weights, bodyweight vs. whatever, fixed platform vs. medicine ball, really comes down to how hard you're squeezing your hands and your feet. Balance makes you squeeze harder. Bigger bars makes you squeeze harder. Wearing soles in your shoes makes you squeeze harder. And squeezing harder boosts the neural drive through the entire working section and thus effective tension.>>

Here is where I first became acquainted with the idea: The Evil Russian Speaks

Happy hypertrophy!
Hi, Jester!

I'm a real stickler for form. I almost always start in a biomechanically correct position. Keeping things in proper alignment loses my attention once the weights get heavy... I am thinking about getting the darn bar moving.

So, I really think it is a question of locking form and posture into place with one simple thought: "irradiation", instead of trying to remember to keep my abs tight and my shoulders back and my head up. Nothing magic, but it works great for me :D

Happy hypertrophy!