“One step back, three forward” is a common saying. This saying can be equally applied to fitness and lifting weights. Here are some reasons why slowing down, lowering weights and taking scheduled breaks can benefit your fitness:
1) Improve Form: After lifting heavy weights consistently for a long time, your form might break down to try and lift heavier weights than you are accustomed to. Taking a step back and decreasing the weights to reinforce good form can be beneficial. If you continue to lift heavy weights and not take time to review proper form, that improper form can become a bad habit that is engrained in your technique.
2) Gives The Body a Rest: If you are training consistently and trying to push your boundaries, your body is accumulating fatigue over time. Lowering the weights for a week or two to reset your body is beneficial for long-term improvement.
3) Change Stimulus: Lowering the weights but adding variation to your exercise (repetitions, tempo, etc.) will help you change up your routine. If you are looking to get stronger, constantly testing your strength is not the best way to improve. Doing lower weights will help you increase volume and still build strength without constantly pushing your 100% capacity. This is also called percentage work, doing repetitions at a lower percentage of your 1 rep max.