Table of Contents
- 1. What Is Resistance Training?
- 2. What Is the Difference Between Strength And Resistance Training?
- 3. What are the Health Benefits Of Resistance Training?
- 4. What are the Fundamentals Of Resistance Training?
- 5. Is Resistance Training The Only Way To Build Muscle?
- 6. How Often Should You Do Resistance Training?
- 7. How Many Reps And Sets Should I Be Doing For Resistance Training?
- 8. What Is The Best Resistance Training For Building Muscles?
- 9. The Best Resistance Training Exercises To Build Muscle Mass
It is vague to just admire someone’s beach body while watching television sitting on your couch. If you want to build muscles and get in, you know that you have to do more than just move. That’s probably the reason you’ve picked up a set of kettlebells and dumbbells and grabbed some new gym wear for training. But that isn’t enough to seriously pack on muscle, size, and strength: Do you understand the value of resistance training?
If your answer is negative, but you certainly want to know about it, we have got you covered. In this article, we’ll be discussing the facts and figures by answering the most frequently asked questions. So, let’s get started:
1. What Is Resistance Training?
Any exercise or movement that places you against a resistive force is known as resistance training. From your very first lift in the gym to the continued growth of HIIT training, you will notice a lot of changes throughout your journey. But resistance training will be pretty much the same every time you find yourself moving against some counterforce in order to grow your muscles.
For example, you have been doing some resistance training at home during quarantine life, like push-ups. Bodyweight training is the quickest way to work out without the need for any workout gear, and within its context, you can still challenge your muscles. By adding resistance to your workouts, you are challenging your muscles under load, pushing them farther by doing so.
However, resistance training is the key to adding overall muscles and building the muscles you want. Your simple daily exercise routine does not tend to gain muscle mass in your body.
2. What Is the Difference Between Strength And Resistance Training?
Resistance training generally means that you are building muscle by using resistance, which generally consists of exercises using your own body weight or using machines and free weights (like dumbbells). Whichever you choose, you are using resistance to increase the strength of your muscles. In that way, it is similar to strength training, although the primary purpose of resistance training is not strength. Strength training entails lifting heavy weights for short periods of time in order to gain strength.
3. What Are The Health Benefits Of Resistance Training?
Resistance training proves beneficial both physically and mentally. Some of the key benefits of resistance training include flexibility and balance; improved muscle strength and tone; reduced cognitive decline in older people; improved stamina; controlling heart diseases, obesity, depression, back pain, and diabetes.
Moreover, resistance training helps in improving mobility and balance, posture, self-esteem, and decreasing the risk of injury.
4. What Are The Fundamentals Of Resistance Training?
Resistance training consists of various components. Its principles include:
- Workout Program: Your resistance training workout program will be composed of various exercises, including flexibility training, balance exercises, strength exercises, and aerobic training.
- Weight Training: All types of weights available, including hand weights or fixed weights, bodyweight, or resistance bands, will be used for different exercises during your strength training workout.
- Exercises: Each exercise will be designed to strengthen a particular group of muscles.
- Reps and Sets: Repetitions and sets of exercises will be based on your level of expertise. Beginners should start with 3 sets of 6 reps each and then increase as their level increases.
- Rest Between Sets: Rest plays a vital role in your muscle-building process. You must rest between sets; for example, if you did 15 reps, take a minute to rest before performing the next set of 15 reps. Moreover, the rest period varies depending on the intensity of exercise being undertaken.
- Variety: Switching around your workout routine, such as regularly introducing exercises, challenges your muscles and forces them to adapt and strengthen.
- Muscle Recovery: After hitting a serious workout session, your muscles get fatigued and the high intensity of your workout causes muscle breaking. Your muscles need time to repair and recover after a resistance workout session. A good rule of thumb is to rest the muscle group for up to 48 hours before working on the same muscle group again.
5. Is Resistance Training The Only Way to Build Muscle?
The answer is “no.” Let’s recall some physics lessons to support this: Force equals mass times acceleration.
The force your muscles produce under challenge while training is what makes them grow. It is easier for your muscles to produce force when they are confronted with a resistive force or a mass that must accelerate. But muscles with lighter mass or even no mass also contain the ability to produce force.
Let’s take the example of sprinters. Their legs need an excessive amount of force to accelerate forward at great speed. And you won’t find any sprinter without wildly muscular legs.
6. How Often Should You Do Resistance Training?
You may have heard more resistance training is better, and your instincts may be to hit the gym and lift weights 7 days a week. However, this is not always the best way or even necessary. According to health advisors, training frequency is overrated; you can build muscle by training three days a week or six.
7. How Many Reps And Sets Should I Be Doing For Resistance Training?
If building muscle mass is your aim, a range of 3-4 sets of every exercise with a variation of 8-12 reps is the best for you. This is considered the best range for packing on muscle. This rep range is particularly helpful for fitness beginners because it allows you to learn each exercise and become more consistent with the motions.
Begin with a light-to-medium weight range at first, to learn each movement and start learning to contract your muscles correctly. You can go from a heavier to a lighter weight variation.
8. What Is The Best Resistance Training For Building Muscles?
Weights (like dumbbells and kettlebells) and bodyweights allow you to train your body through a wide range of motion and in a variety of movements with very little setup. Hand weights are also joint-friendly, so they are the best tool to start any resistance training program.
9. The Best Resistance Training Exercises To Build Muscle Mass
Start with exercises that hit multiple muscles at once, much like how your body works in daily life. Deadlifts, squats, rows, and bench presses are some of the best exercises that work your overall body. Moreover, these exercises allow you to carry more weight than single-joint exercises like lateral raises and biceps curls.
The more resistance you face, the more your body will grow in size and strength. However, multi-joint motions ensure that your core, from abdominals through glutes, is active in the motion as well.
Multi-joint exercises that target multiple muscle groups and challenge them with more resistance have some potential benefits. It includes that it accelerates your metabolism more than single-joint motions, leading to fat loss and greater calorie burn.
9.1. Warm-Up Before Resistance Training
Warming up is essential before beginning any workout routine, not just weight training. Warm-up your body before beginning your resistance training workout session. Walking, cycling and rowing are regarded as the best aerobic activities, and a 5-minute warm-up session should also include some stretching exercises. Dynamic stretching is defined as slow, controlled movements through the entire range of motion like yoga asanas.
9.2. Resistance Training For Beginners At-Home
During your resistance training workout, you should be training certain body parts on certain days. Try training for three days a week as if you are just starting. If you do not possess any workout equipment at home, try these resistance exercises at home using dumbbells or other household items to make your workout session effective.
Follow this workout three days a week, take one day rest in between workouts. Perform this workout as a circuit, resting 30 seconds between sets. Perform 3 rounds.
How to Perform:
- Begin inprone on the floor with your arms slightly wider than shoulder-width.
- Arms should be positioned directly beneath the shoulder, with gentle elbows.
- Keep your body in a neutral stance with equal balance in both hands and toes.
- Concentric Phase – pressing through the palms of the hands while remaining neutral. Straighten the arms and make contact with the chest muscles.
- During the concentric phase, exhale.
- Eccentric phase — gradually lower your body by bending your elbows and maintaining neutral alignment until your chest is practically touching the floor.
- As you incline, take a deep breath in.
Perform 12 to 15 reps on each set.
Two-Way Plank Iso Row Hold
How to Perform:
- Place your arm at some elevated place while holding the water gallon or backpack of books or a dumbbell in your other hand.
- Get into the incline plank position with your knees slightly bent inwards.
- Maintain the position for 15 seconds and then get into the rest position for a few seconds.
- Again, get into the incline plank position holding the weight in your other hand but keep your legs straight this time.
- Maintain the position for 15 seconds and then release the weight to get into the rest position.
Bodyweight Split Squat
How to Perform:
- Place your hands on your waist and take a step forward with your right leg, so your stance is stumbled.
- Slowly lower your body as far as you can.
- When you are done with lowering your body, jump with enough force that your both feet lift off the floor.
- Land with your left leg forward.
- Alternate back and forth with both legs for the allotted time.
- Once you get control of this move, you should swing your arms in opposition to your legs to increase resistance.
Perform 12 reps on each side.
9.3. Resistance Training For Beginners At-Gym
And, if you own gym membership and have access to workout equipment, you can challenge yourself with this workout.
Directions: Perform this workout 3-times a week, resting one day between each session. Use weights that challenge you, but make sure to maintain a clean form at all times. Do all sets of each exercise, then move on to the next exercise.
How to Perform:
- Grab the suitable dumbbell and place it next to a standard weight bench.
- Place your outstretched hand on the bench, keeping your legs straight by getting into a downward position.
- Hold the dumbbell in your hand by keeping your back straight and aligned with your back.
- Push the dumbbell, driving your elbow up towards the ceiling.
- Lower down the dumbbell in a controlled motion and get your arm down at its full length.
- Repeat the same movement to perform the remaining reps by maintaining your posture.
Perform 4 sets of 10 to 12 reps on each side.
Hollow Body Single-Arm Floor Press Series
How to Perform:
- Lay down on the ground with a dumbbell in one hand.
- Get into a hollow position by keeping your buttocks and lower back on the ground and your feet and upper torso raised.
- Extend the other arm to help keep your balance.
- Squeeze your core to keep a solid base then press the dumbbell up.
- Hold the position for 5 seconds.
- Count to 5 and then perform 5 single-arm presses while maintaining good posture.
- After finishing the 5 reps, press up the dumbbell again and hold the weight up for 4 seconds.
- Execute 4 single-arm press reps.
- Continue this pattern until you have reached 1 rep.
Repeat the same steps with the other side too.
How to Perform:
- Begin by standing with your feet hip-width apart and slightly bent knees. Hold dumbbells in each hand, and place them in front of your hips with palms facing thighs.
- Start sending the hips back, keeping your spine in a neutral position, and squeezing your shoulder blades.
- Keep the dumbbells close to your body so they are in front of your shin while lowering down.
- Do not allow the hips to sink further once the dumbbells pass the knees.
- Keep your spine neutral and press through your heels to completely extend your hips and knees, squeezing your glutes at the peak.
How to Perform:
- Grab a kettlebell or a dumbbell with both hands.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your toes slightly arched out.
- Place your elbows to your rib cage and hold the weight (dumbbell and kettlebell) right under your chin.
- Keep your arms close to your chest and your elbows pointing down.
- Lower your body as far as by bending your hips and knees.
- When you are in the deepest squat, pause for 2 seconds before driving through your glutes, legs, and heels to stand back up to the starting position.
- Try with the 3-second rule at the time of lowering down and backing up.
- That’s one rep.
Perform 4 sets of 10 – 12 reps.