Coach explains if masturbation really affects your gains
It used to be a common piece of advice in the world of sport: Coaches “forbid” athletes from having sex or masturbating before a big match, to ensure peak performance. But is there any truth in the belief that sexual release can actually hurt the results you’re looking for in the gym? What if men avoid self-pleasure altogether, will their increase in testosterone lead to physical changes?
Coach and strength trainer Jeff Cavaliere CSCS addresses this issue in a new video on the Athlean-X channel and references the resurgence of this idea as a result of the online “NoFap” movement. “When you refrain from masturbating, these increases in testosterone, they say, will lead to more ‘manhood’, more attraction to the opposite sex, the ability to become more aggressive and pursue the things you want. in life … to build more muscle, “he says.” I don’t know if I believe that. “
Cavaliere points out that the research supporting these claims consists of two studies, one of which only included 10 test subjects. “There have been so many studies that have shown the opposite,” he says.
What research also fails to take into account, he continues, is that the body constantly maintains a state of homeostasis, which means that even if an individual’s testosterone levels were increased, their body would release then a hormone called SHBG to counteract it.
Conversely, there is anecdotal evidence that suggests that masturbation actually has the potential to help your ability to build muscle. For example, an increase in serotonin after orgasm can make a person more relaxed. Cavaliere hypothesizes that masturbation before bed may promote more restful sleep, thereby maximizing muscle recovery.
This would be particularly applicable, he says, to people who are not training at a high intensity level and who end their workouts late at night feeling very alert and needing to relax before sleep.
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