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Weightlifting - Getting the Results You Want

Weightlifting - Getting the Results You Want

Muscle growth, also known as hypertrophy, does not occur uniformly throughout each muscle or throughout the entire body. This effect is known as task specificity and needs to be taken into account when designing a muscle growth program. For example, when working with the chest muscle and trying to work the pectoral major, a chest fly and a chest press should be added to the routine. Both of these exercises work the muscle in a unique way.

It is important to incorporate a variety of exercises for different muscle groups in order to significantly impact the muscle. For example only doing a machine leg extension would not be adequate to improve the size or strength of the entire quadriceps. In order to improve upon the effects of muscle building adding additional, multi-joint exercises such as lunges or squats would be the best way to get the results you want.

A muscle growth program should include more multi-joint exercises rather than single joint routines because of the greater muscle growth experienced with multi-joint routines. An example of a multi-joint exercise is a squat, where it impacts the knees and the hips, unlike a leg extension only bends at a single joint, the knee. It is also important to note that multi-joint exercises like the squat will burn extra calories compared to just a leg extension. Single joint exercises shouldn't be neglected, but instead combined with multi-joint exercises. The order of exercises should start with the big major muscles groups and work down to the smaller single joint exercises.

Recommendations to get the most out of a muscle growth program

  • Exercises should consist of 8-10 reps, 4-8 sets, 60-80% of 1Rep Max (RM) (1RM testing should be conducted), and a rest of 2-5 minutes between sets. See a personal trainer for this test
  • Use multi-joint exercises and target more than one muscle
  • Use more than one exercise per muscle group
  • Consume a protein rich diet
  • Avoid high volume or endurance training

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