The Myth Called Muscle Confusion


The fitness industry was struck by this word a few years ago. Muscle confusion was popularized by the P90X system. Some considered it to be a solution to their problem and others were just too skeptical about such word. Is this really based on training science?

Or is it just one of those creative marketing schemes to attract curious and desperate souls?

In a nutshell, according to the makers of this system, muscle confusion or more completely known as the “training science of muscle confusion” works on by literally confusing muscles. No, muscles don’t have brains. So, how are they being placed in a confused state?

Well, the experts from P90X said that if a person is doing the same set of exercises for a certain period of time, the muscles start to become well-adjusted that it doesn’t improve anymore. So for them, the solution was to shift from one exercise to another. That way, the muscles will have a hard time to adjust, or they will become “confused”. With this, the muscles will really exert more effort and work harder thus resulting to great improvements.

It’s seemingly real, right? There’s some kind of logic to it. However, according to experts, there are a lot of loop holes and flaws with this particular system. In fact, they just think that it’s more of a marketing scheme than a revolutionary solution for weight loss problems and muscle improvements. Muscle confusion is good to hear, so any person who might be desperate will really be attracted with this.

However, if you try to search for scientific research journals relating to this term, you will only have more or less ten results. And commonly, this isn’t a good sign. You can just type the term in Google and see it for yourself. The results aren’t related at all. For this we can just conclude that muscle confusion isn’t really based on science. They also have added the word “training science” to their system. But if you again search for the term for any related studies, you will get poor or no results at all!

Is there really such a thing? Or the maker, Tony Horton just made these things up. Here’s another surprise, if you look for Tony’s work, you will get no results as well.

With all these things combined, since you won’t really get any credible results, you will only be led to one conclusion. The thing is that “the training science of muscle confusion” is just a simple marketing term to attract lay people. That’s basically it.  However, the more accurate term for this is supposedly, exercise science. Now, this is more accepted even to students with bachelor’s degree. If you look at it closely, exercise science is more easily understood than training science. Probably, they just want to be different but it turns out it’s not a good choice of words especially for those who have knowledge regarding these things.

The other term, “muscle confusion” is also worth noting. Though it sounds more common (yes, putting brains to your muscles are now common, thanks to them.) Obviously, it’s just for marketing purposes and nothing more. It just refers to the use of variables in the actual exercise methods like reps, sets, mode and more. But the actual, more accepted term which is supposed to be used here is periodization. Laypeople can easily understand the word periodization if you give them the right information, you don’t have to create terms and later on create more actual confusion.

With these things considered, experts have made some conclusions with regards to P90X’s new found system. First is that the video is nice and very creative. Second, there were people, most of them former athletes, who have not finished the entire program. And last, the program is just playing around people’s fears, ego and insecurities which aren’t good.

You can try this if you want if you are really curious. But be sure to prepare yourself for the challenges up ahead. Health and fitness, by its very nature is all about doing things without time frames or guaranteed results. It’s not an all or nothing proposition. You can reach your goal even if you are taking your time doing it and as long as you are committed to change your lifestyle for the big change.


Author Bio:

The author from is a fitness enthusiast. He wants to share all the knowledge that he has acquire from the resources he has read without any cost. Information is the key to success in the world of fitness and health. Feel free to read muscle maximizer review, if you want a real and factual knowledge about muscle development.