This article contains a list of rules and tips that will help you become bigger, stronger and get lean muscle mass.
Advices and rules are based on data and experiences directly from fitness and bodybuilding industry and interviews with professional fitness and bodybuilding athletes.
1. The best exercise for biceps: Barbell Curl
Although various versions of this exercise are required to develop nicely defined biceps according to professional bodybuilders the best version of this exercise is the use of straight bars.
Performing barbell curl with a straight rod enables you to lift more weight in the series with over 10 iterations compared to the variation of this exercise where you use a bent rod.
2. The best exercise for chest: Thrust with weights
Recent studies show that thrust with weights involves muscles of the shoulder less compared to flat bar thrust (bench-press). The smaller activity in the muscles of the shoulder when performing this exercise means more stimulation of chest muscle, and exactly that is necessary for proper development of the chest.
3. The best exercise for developing the muscles of the shoulder: Dumbbell Overhead Press
According to recent research conducted by the fitness organization Strength Pro, the dumbbell overhead press exercise activates more muscle fibers in the middle of the shoulder, while the muscle fibers of the anterior part of the shoulder are less active compared to the military press behind neck exercise.
Well-developed muscles of the middle part of the arm is what will give you broad and well defined deltoids, so the dumbbell overhead press exercise must be a part of your training program.
4. The best exercise for solid triceps: Dips
The pushdowns exercise performed using a lat machine is the most used triceps exercise, and the dips triceps exercises are the least practiced among beginners and much of the more experienced practitioners. Professional athletes in the fitness and bodybuilding disagree with this way of exercising.
They think that because pushdowns exercises represent single-joint movements there is a limit to how much weight can be used when performing these movements.
On the other hand dips exercises represent multi-joint movements that include shoulders and elbows which means you can use significantly more weight and therefore greater muscle stimulation which will result in larger and solid triceps.
5. The best exercise for quadriceps: Front Squat
Most exercisers can use more weight when exercising the back squat version compared to the front squat exercise. However, when doing the back squat movement the muscles of the back and muscles of the buttocks are activated and this means a lesser muscle stimulation of the quadriceps. The front squat version provides greater muscle stimulation of the quadriceps and this means more muscle growth.
6. The best exercise for the muscles of the buttocks and back muscles: Romanian Deadlift
All those who do intense and regular workouts for the legs never omit the leg curls exercise which targets the muscles of the back.
Yet very few of them do the romanian deadlift movement that allows lifting more weight, which provides greater muscle stimulation of the buttocks and the back muscles. Therefore insert the romanian deadlift movement in your workout for the legs.
7. Best exercises for melting calories: Multi-joint movements using free weights
Scientists from Truman State University made a comparison in relation to the burning of calories where they questioned 8 professional fitness models who performed 2 sets of leg presses and squat exercises.
The studies have shown that when performing the squat series you spend 50% more calories compared to the leg presses series and the reason for this was that when doing the squat exercise, which is a multi-joint motion where a greater number of muscle stabilizers are activated which contributes to faster burning of calories.
So if you want to burn more calories do multi-joint movements such as squats, lunges, standing dumbbell overhead press, dips and barbell row exercises.
8. The best grip while doing Lat Pulldown: Wide grip from the front
Scientists from the University of Miami for Sports Medicine examined 10 professional bodybuilders who performed the following exercises: wide grip from the front while doing latpulldown, reverse grip, neutral grip and wide grip from behind while their muscle activity was measured using electromyography.
The results showed that the broad front grip when performing the lat pulldown activated most of the muscles of the back.
9. The best time for a workout: An evening workout
Instead of watching TV at night use this time for a workout. Researchers from the University of Southern Mississippi examined 16 professional fitness athletes divided into two groups, one group did the workout before 12 pm and the other group did the training sessions after 7 pm.
The training sessions consisted of 45-minute weight training and 30 minutes of cardio. The group which did the workout after 7 pm received 5% greater muscle mass and a 10% reduction in body fat compared with the group which did the workout before 12 pm.
10. Best abdominal movement: Crunch exercises
According to a study in 2004 at the University of Nebraska Sports Medicine it has been found that when doing the crunch exercise (abdominal basic movements) you target all 4 muscle groups in the abdominal part (the upper abs, lower abs, side abs and internal abdominal muscles).
Research shows that the explosive and quickly performance of the crunch exercise increases muscle activity of all abdominal muscles especially the lateral abdominal muscles.