Can stabilization training help me increase muscle size?

While stabilization training itself won’t do much to increase lean muscle mass it will properly prepare your body to get the most out of hypertrophy training that does increase lean muscle mass. 

To get the most out of your hypertrophy training you need to have proper stabilization of the joints and connective tissues to be able to handle the loads necessary to bring about increases in lean muscle mass.

Stabilization training is a good preparation phase to use before hypertrophy training and should also be periodically revisited to help you recover from extended periods of hypertrophy training. Remember that it is important to periodize and change up your program in order to keep progressing and avoid overtraining.

Joel Merritt
Stabilization training is absolutely necessary if you want to gain muscle mass.  While the stabilization training itself will not cause much in the way of muscle size increase, it will prepare you for more success in later training to increase muscle size.  Think of your body like a house.  If the foundation is not right, nothing you build on top of it will be either.  A solid foundation leads to a solid structure.  If your body is not balanced and functioning properly then you will not be able to reach your full potential, and you will be at a much higher risk of injury.  Stabilization training will help to correct postural imbalances and movement compensations so that your body is ready to support the muscle that you aim to add.  Stabilization training should involve specific exercises meant to correct imbalances and compensations in your body and help you work towards ideal posture.  Once you've addressed those issues you'll be ready to build mass on to a solid foundation.
Stabilization will not increase your muscle size, but it is a necessary prerequisite for muslce growth. In order to do the intensity of resistance training necessary to stimulate the muscles to grow, the joints must be stabilized. To grow the muscles, you must provide a gradual, continuous overload through hypertrophy training. Hypertrophy is the increase of the size of muscle cells. Most hypertrophy programs include high volume (such as 6 to 12 reps and 3 to 5 sets) and moderate to high intensities (such as 75%-85% of 1 repetition maximum). Muscles can only produce strength to the degree the joint is stabilized, and stabilization will come from the connection of the nervous system to the muscular system. A resistance training program should begin with exercise that focuses more on stabilization exercises performed in a proprioceptively enriched environment. A standing cable chest press at 50% of your 1 repetition maximum for example would teach the nervous system appropriate control before progressing to hypertrophy training.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.