Jim Nuzzo


The learning effect with 1RM strength tests

The one repetition maximum (1RM) is a test of muscle strength. It is defined as the maximal amount of weight an individual can lift once, but not twice, when using the correct technique. Common 1RM tests include the bench press, chest press machine, biceps curl, lat pulldown, back squat, leg […]


Motor Impairment on an international stage

On November 26, some of the finest minds in medical science will meet in Sydney, Australia to discuss the latest  research on motor impairments – the diseases or health conditions that disrupt function of the human motor system (brain, nerves, and muscles) and cause physical disability. The event that will […]


Motor Impairment Blog’s most popular posts

Over the past 4.5 years, researchers from all over the world have written non-technical summaries on their research for the Motor Impairment Blog. Consequently, the Blog contains a rich archive of information on topics such as muscle strength and weakness, falls and balance, sensation, pain, motor control, and research methods. […]


Jars of jam and muscle weakness in the morning 3

It’s 6AM. Last night, you missed dinner and you’ve woken up early because your body is ready for a feed. You stumble from your bedroom into the kitchen. You open the fridge and search for your favourite jar of jam. It’s nowhere to be found. Your partner finished it (without […]


Strength training improves the nervous system’s ability to drive muscles 2

Imagine that the New Year has just begun. You’ve made a resolution to improve your physical fitness. In particular, you want to improve your muscle strength. You’ve heard that people with stronger muscles live longer and have less difficulty standing, walking, and using the toilet when they get older (Rantanen […]


Hard and fast: Power training improves walking speed and voluntary activation in mobility-limited older adults

Muscle strength and other measures of physical function decline with age (e.g., Kenny et al. 2013).  To overcome these age-related decrements in physical function, physical exercise is recommended (e.g. American College of Sports Medicine 2009; Australian Government Department of Health 2005).  Two types of exercise that improve physical function in older adults […]


One session of strength training makes the spinal cord more excitable 6

Strength training consists of repetitive high-force muscle contractions.  Strength training for four weeks improves maximal strength (Carroll et al. 2011).  These strength gains are primarily the consequence of changes in the nervous system and are not simply due to an increase in muscle size (e.g., Weier et al. 2012).  In […]