Medical Definition of Isotonic exercise

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Isotonic exercise: Exercise when a contracting muscle shortens against a constant load, as when lifting a weight. Isotonic exercise is one method of muscular exercise. In contrast, isometric exercise is when muscular contractions occur without movement of the involved parts of the body.

Isotonic comes from the Greek "iso-", equal + "tonos", tone = maintaining equal (muscle) tone. The muscle maintains equal tone while shortening in isotonic exercise.

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Reviewed on 12/27/2018

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