Some people love spending time in the gym. Others want to earn a physique without putting in any extra time doing it.
To maximize your time in the gym, just pick the best exercise for each body part and assign them to your workouts as needed. Here are thirteen resistance training exercises.
Chest – The Dumbbell Bench Press
I almost chose the push-up as the best chest exercise because of how it forces other muscles to work, especially around the scapulae. However, it's tough to beat the dumbbell chest.
Why it's the best: It works the chest through a nice, full range of motion. Dumbbell version far superior to the barbell version.
As for flat versus incline or decline, I'd choose flat or shallow-incline dumbbell presses.
Back (Vertical Pulling) ̵
1; The Pull Up
Granted, the main drawback to the pull-up is that most people are not strong enough to do more than a couple of good reps. Although you could just do machine pulldowns, ideally for a method of making pull-ups easier, like band pull-ups and feet-supported pull-ups. There are some pretty good machines out there that do assist you while doing a pull-up.
Choosing the pull-up as the best vertical-pulling exercise is a no-brainer. Not only is the pull-up functional (it requires body control and relative strength), but it also works on the lats, middle and lower traps, rhomboids, posterior delts, and even the elbow flexors like the biceps and brachioradialis .
Form tip: Make sure to keep your back up. Try to touch the lower half of your chest to the bar. This will help you use the scapular retractors in your upper back. For grip-width, go just a tad against shoulder width.
Back (Horizontal Pulling) – The One-Arm Dumbbell Row
Barbell rows are great, but when you get pretty strong they can become taxing on your lower back.
Why it's the best: When it comes to building a wide, thick back along with some serious pulling power, it's hard to beat the efficiency of the one-arm dumbbell row. Plus, it's quite safe even when going really heavy.
The dumbbell also provides freedom to move in all three planes, making it possible to really age the path of the dumbbell and the particular back muscles you're targeting.
For example, you can with your humerus close to your side to the lats, or you can abduct your humerus and row with your elbow more to the side to hit your scapular retractors and posterior delts more, much like a Kroc row ,
Shoulders – The Dumbbell Overhead Press
Like the best chest exercise, dumbbells do the best jobs for developing shoulders.
Why It's the best: Not only do you get a nice, full range of motion, but you have the option to finely tune the path of movement and find a comfortable position for the highly mobile (often unstable and finicky) shoulder joint
If you want to stimulate your core stabilizers, do the standing version.
Triceps – The V-Bar Pushdown
It's easy to find the triceps, but are they are easy on the elbows? I really like the skull crusher (triceps extension) and may have chosen it as the best tricep exercise. Sure, add them to your routine on occasion, but avoid doing skull crushers week in and week out. Your distal triceps tendon will thank you.
Why it's the best: This V-bar pushdown hits the three heads of the triceps quite well, especially the visible medial and lateral heads.
Biceps – The Alternating Dumbbell Curl and EZ-Bar Curl (Tie)
Why they're both the best: The alternating dumbbell curl allows you to focus on one side at a time, putting more mental (and physiological) effort into each rep. Plus you can supinate (twist) your wrist as you curl the weight up, which is one of the functions of the biceps.
One slight drawback to this exercise is that one arm is resting on the other side is working.
Like straight-bar curls, you can just grab the bar – slightly narrower than shoulder width, by the way – and curl your way to big bi's. Yes, you can do dumbbell curls bilaterally, thus avoiding the non-working limb. Hanging Leg Raise “/>
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