How many of you utilise bodyweight exercises as a means of working your target muscles? Many individuals will blend a combination of traditional resistance lifting and bodyweight exercising within a single training session but have you ever thought which method may be more beneficial?
At the end of the day, whether you’re looking to develop muscular strength or hypertrophy, there needs to be a stimulus there to bring about this alteration. Primarily, most individuals will opt for resistance work in the form of free weights and machine weights, but there is a further option which is often not given the credit it deserves; bodyweight exercising.
Don’t let bodyweight exercises fool you; it’s no stroll in the park. You might argue that a simple press-up is by no means as challenging as a loaded bench press, but then again you might find wide grip pull-ups one of the most difficult bodyweight exercises going. It’s all about personal preference and making the workout work for you. This article considers both bodyweight exercising and traditional lifting.
In the current climate where most individuals are looking to cut back there expenses and save those pennies, how easy is it to justify your expensive health club membership? Not only that, after a long, hard day at the office do you really want to be diverting 5 extra miles from your house in rush hour traffic? Not only is bodyweight exercising inexpensive but it’s also convenient too. To perform an incredible array of exercises including pull-ups, chin-ups, press-ups, squats and lunges all you really need is yourself and some floor space. It really is that straightforward with bodyweight.
It simply wouldn’t be fair to offer one side of a debate without the other now would it? If you are fortunate enough to have access to gym kit then there are several benefits which jump out; primarily you can determine and alter the resistance you wish to select to mimic your training goals. This decision can be based around science and utilise your 1 repetition maximum for each exercise, rather than having your body weight only. The combination of machine and free weights which fall into this category should also offer you more variety and exercise selection than simply bodyweight alternatives.
We’ve reached decision time; bodyweight exercising or traditional lifting? The answer to this question to some extent will be determined by your training goals and personal circumstances. Remember however, this decision does not have to be that black and white in terms of one over the other. If you aren’t a member of the gym then your hands are tied, however if you are fortunate enough to have access to a gym environment, then this doesn’t take away from the fact that you can still use your bodyweight as a key tool. For example, it might be that you finish your chest session with some decline press-ups or commence your back session with some wide grip pull-ups. Why not utilise both methods together?
The key to gaining and further developing muscular strength and size is through constantly keeping your body guessing and what better way than switching between bodyweight exercising and traditional lifting. As long as you are always considering the exercises you are undertaking, you’re required repetitions and sets and the order in which you are choosing to adopt either of these methods in your workout, then you shouldn’t go far wrong.