Isometric training

2001

Keep your face fit - Isometric training - Anne Roggen

2016

As we age, the natural tendency of our muscles is to lose strength and mass. This also applies to the facial muscles. Loss of face muscle tissue contributes to facial sag, droopiness and an aged look. On the other hand, regular isometric exercise leads to strong facial muscles and an improved structural support of the skin. Consequently, the facial volume and contours remain youthful, giving the face a taut appearance.

Muscle mass declines

Aging is indisputably associated with loss of muscle mass. Between the age of 20 and 80, we lose approximately half of our muscle tissue. Physically inactive people can lose more muscle mass than active people.

Looser skin

Loss of muscle matters because it doesn’t only lessen strength and fitness, it also causes an aged appearance. Our skin is shaped by what’s underneath: fat and muscles. The facial muscles form the framework of the skin. They provide structure to the face and help maintain firm facial contours. Muscle loss, just like fat loss, causes loose and hanging skin, more wrinkles and less elasticity.

Building muscles prevents visual signs of aging

If you want to maintain a fit appearance, it’s essential to preserve muscle mass by exercise. It’s generally known that bodybuilding is an excellent way to fight the loss of muscle mass. Bodybuilding is the use of resistance exercise to control and develop one’s musculature. Bodybuilding tones and bulks up the muscles, making them plumper and less saggy.

Isometric training gewichten

Facebuilding = bodybuiling

Similar to bodybuilding, facebuilding targets the facial muscles by resistance training. Facebuilding reduces sagging of the facial contours, adds volume to the face and tightens up the skin by plumping it up with the increased muscle mass.

Isometric training

All the exercises in my book ‘Keep Your Face Fit’ are based on isometric training, a specific form of exercise that has been proven effective through extensive scientific research.

Isometric exercises are done without changing the length of the muscles. These exercises work on the muscles in a static position and demand muscle tension without any movement. Primarily, there are three ways in which the muscles are worked – concentric, which involves contraction or shortening of muscles; eccentric, which involves lengthening of muscles; and isometric, where the muscles tighten without any alteration in length. Many core conditioning exercises, yoga postures, and even pilates exercises are isometric.

Isometric training hand press

Well-known examples of isometric training

  • Hand press
    Grasp your hands together and press as hard as you can.

  • Wall squat
    Press your back against a wall and lower yourself down until your hips and knees are bent 90 degrees. Hold this position for ten seconds or as long as you can.

No grimaces

Isometric training is particularly appropriate for facial exercise: because there is no movement, the skin stays smooth during the muscular contraction.

Muscle soreness

Especially during the exercises for the mouth and the cheek area, you can really feel your muscles burning. The day after, you might even experience slight muscle soreness, just like after any other resistance training session.

Examples

Keep your face fit!

Toned muscles contribute to a fit appearance, and that also applies to the face. If you exercise on a regular basis, you’ll notice your facial contours will stay tighter and the aging process is slowed down.

To those who still question the effect of isometric facial exercise, I can recommend the following exercise:

To those who still question the effect of isometric facial exercise, I can recommend the following exercise:

How to keep your face fit (and look younger)

By Anne Roggen