Im got the thought that actually for that purpose low intensity and long time might be usefull.
Cant find the thread where this was mentioned in detail right now.
Soemthing along: The chemical properties of the elastin component after long duration constant stretch change.
It might then be primed to do a focused exercise without having to deal with the “elastic rebound”/elasticity.
I agree that the amount of time at force matters. But the more I’ve PE’d, the more I think the gains come from going beyond the elastic force levels. Staying in the elastic range to me ultimately means that the tissue will elastically “bounce back” to its old form, with no meaningful changes. I’d also agree though, that “easing into” an exercise will make the elastic range longer, which could be its own growth mechanism. But then I think once the tissue is “primed” then it’s still beneficial to go beyond the elastic force and actually do some damage.
Last night after reading xeno’s post I Googled the term “yield stress” and then viewed the google images page. There are some good graphs there. Notably several very similar graphs of stress vs. strain, probably referring to metals for engineering purposes. But the general shape of the curve should apply to collagen fibers as well. I’m going to attach the image of the graph here, as I think it’s copyright safe, simply describing a common mechanical property, probably included in every mechanical engineering textbook written in the last 100 years.
I also wikipedia’d (our language is fucked, and I’m guilty) the terms stress and strain. There are highly detailed pages on these mechanical physics terms. But for our purposes, this general definition is useful enough.
“In continuum mechanics, stress is a physical quantity that expresses the internal forces that neighboring particles of a continuous material exert on each other, while strain is the measure of the deformation of the material.”
So we exert a PE force (stress), for example hanging at the attachment point. And that force propagates down our entire penis into the connecting tissues in our abdomen. Each particle of connective tissue is passing the force along to the next particle, and that’s stress, the force between any two neighboring particles in our connective tissue.. That force causes elongation (strain). Strain is literally just the particles moving relative to each other. It sounds like a force, but really its a measure of movement under force.
Getting back to the point though, those yield stress graphs for deforming metals should apply to our connective tissue as well, with roughly the same shape. The shape of the graphs contain a linear segment at low force levels. Each additional unit of force (or stress) causes X additional units of strain (elongation or expansion). The linear section is called the “elastic range”. As stress is increased up to the “yield stress” point, the slope of the graph begins to decrease, and each additional unit of stress causes MORE than X additional units of strain. What’s happening here is that chemical bonds in the material are breaking, and re-arranging, attempting to hold on and keep the object intact, but beginning to fail in the weakest areas, at least that’s my understanding. This is called the “plastic range”.
The plastic range in the graph looks like an upside down parabola, with its maximum (apex point) being called the “ultimate stress”. Up until the the ultimate stress point, strain is increasing relatively faster than stress. Each marginal unit of stress is causing more and more strain up until that point. Beyond that point, the material begins to fail. Strain continues to increase, while stress is actually decreasing. If force level is constant, upon reaching the ultimate stress, the material will probably quickly fail, unless the force can be removed between the time ultimate stress is reached, and the time the material fails. I have no real experience with this, so I don’t know how fast the material fails, but my guess is that it happens very fast.
My understanding of PE leaves me unclear on how to interpret this. My gut reaction is to say that our ideal force level is the ultimate stress point. This would cause chemical micro-tears in the target connective tissues at their weakest points. Going beyond that point would lead to quick failure, which could be interpreted as injury. However, in the IPR hypothesis, as long as we’re talking about individual connective fibers here, we would actually want go beyond the ultimate stress and break the fibers and begin the micro wound healing process. Another thought here is that breaking the fibers could lead to the splaying and cross linkages, because when new collagen is laid down, it is laid down omni-directionally and only later is aligned with other fibers, and it takes months or years for the new collagen to fully align itself (the remodeling phase of IPR). So that “afterthought” would also be an argument to stay in front of the ultimate stress point, and trust that the chemical micro tears are sufficient damage to initiate the IPR process.
In either case, I’m convinced that we at the very least want to get as close to the ultimate stress point as possible, because our goal here is strain, and we get the most bang for our buck (strain for our stress) the closer we get to the ultimate stress point. And maybe we even want to intentionally go up to and beyond that point to induce failure. I’m not sure on the right thinking. Again my gut reaction is that failure in this analogy is real injury, while just in front of the ultimate stress point is the sweet spot we’re aiming for, where we’re getting deformation that results in tissue repair and growth, but not ultimate failure that results in injury.
I’d be very interested to hear your thoughts on that distinction, xeno.
Another tangential idea. I think the mechanics graph I’m sharing is probably for a metal. An interesting area of discussion is how the shape of the graph would differ for our target tissues in the penis. I would think the elastic range would have a much lower slope. Penis tissue is quite a bit more elastic than rigid metal. I would also guess that the plastic range has a relatively steeper parabola (relative to its own elastic range slope). Making the plastic range smaller (in strain) relative to its own elastic range. In other words, metal is not elastic, there is a very small movement in response to elastic level forces. But once it hits plastic range, there is a relatively large movement in response to a relatively small increase in force. Penis tissue is more elastic, relatively large movement in response to elastic force, but once in plastic range, relatively little additional strain can be achieved up to the point of ultimate stress. Put in other words again, when I stretch my penis, I can probably go from 4” to 7.125” elastically, but can only get from 7.125” to 7.375” plastically. Compared to a 4” metal rod, where it might be something like going up to 4.125” elastically, and then 4.125” to 7.375” plastically (total guesses for illustrative purposes.
I really went off, but it is a good topic. Getting back to your post dickerschwanz, my current understanding of PE is that successful PE is about spending large amounts of time beyond the elastic range, but before the ultimate stress. And then spending large amounts of time letting the tissue heal, so that it can be deformed again.
Before 5.5" x 4.1" ///////// Now 7.4" x 4.9"