Bodybuilding Training Article from

Weight Lifting and Weight Training - Chapter 11

Home Gym Equipment

Individual Stations

Folding Bench Press

Adjustable Combo Bench

Flat Bench

Heavy Flat Bench

Adjustable Spotter Bench

Bench Press Spotter

Basic Bench Press

Self Spotter Rack

Power Cage

Hip Sled

Dumbbell Bench

Smith Machine Bench

Jones Machine

Back & Arm Machine

Cable Crossover Machine

Squat Rack

Preacher Curl Bench

Roman Chair

Hyperextension Bench

Seated Calf Machine

Vertical Knee Raise

Hack Squat Machine

Power Rack

Power Rack Bench Combo

Power Rack Lat Attachment

Leg Extension Curl

Ab Crunch Board

Dumbbell Rack

Flat Incline Decline Bench

Utility Bench

Smith Machine

Smith Lat Attachment

Plate Loaded Gym

150 lb. Weight Stack

Selectorized Home Gym

Preacher Curl Attachment

Bench Squat Combo

Lat Machines

Phys-X Free-Standing Lat Tower

Olympic Weight Tree

Standard Weight Tree

Ab Crunch Machine


Home Gyms

Home Gyms

Performance Trainer

Biangular Gym

Two Stack Gym

4-in-1 Free Weight Gym

All-in-1 Free Weight Gym

Smith Gym


Cardio Equipment

8k Treadmill

10k Treadmill

Elliptical Trainer


Miscellaneous Items

Body Solid Miscellaneous

Bodybuilding Accessories

Gravity Inversion Boots

Ab Blaster Slings

Olympic Adapter Sleeves

Rubber Floor Protector

Olympic Shrug Bar

Push-Up Bars


Chapter Eleven

The best exercises

First, let me emphasize that this is by no means a complete treatise on weight training for athletes, which would need a whole book completely to cover the subject.

Space limitations permit me to give only general advice and a broad outline of the best exercises.Any athlete or sportsman who wishes to include this form of training in his schedules should practice the standard exercises I suggest as a basic schedule, plus a few more of a specialized nature related to his particular sport or event. With a knowledge of the particular requirements and the muscle groups involved, a selection can be made form the additional exercise that I list.

:My suggested basic schedule is a selection of exercises from the beginner's schedule covered in Chapter Six. There are sufficient to build a fair degree of all-round development and strength (a condition that many sportsmen lack).

The addition of three or four specialized movements makes up a complete weight-training schedule that can be used as convenient by the athlete.

Many sports and games have a close season, and some athletes and sportsmen like to use this close season as a period devoted to weight training, when it can be used several times weekly without it clashing with their normal sporting activity.

Others prefer to use weight training regularly each week throughout the year, even during their active season. This means that it is difficult to devote, say, three sessions weekly to weight training, as obviously the bulk of one's training must be devoted to the sport or event. There is the point, too, that one might easily over train if trying to incorporate a full weight-training program into one's athletic schedules.

Perhaps the best compromise is for one to practice weight training once a week during the close season.

It is a matter for each individual to decide according to his inclination, his physical capacity for training and other circumstances.

Here is my suggested basic schedule:

  • Press from Behind Neck
  • Stiff-legged Dead Lift
  • Squat
  • Straight-arm Pull Over
  • Bench Press

To complete, add three or four special exercises designed to strengthen the muscle groups that play the biggest part in the performance of the relevant event.

For example, a high or long jumper needs springy, explosive strength in the legs. He will get some benefit form the ordinary Squat, but a useful extra movement is the jumping Squat. A shot putter can use the power-jerk with dumbbell. And so on.

Another aspect is the number of repetitions. Field athletes like the shot putter, discus and javelin thrower, the high and long jumper, need to use lower repetitions, with correspondingly heavier weights, that the runners, whose activity is far different.

The field athlete puts forth one concentrated, explosive effort, then relaxes for a time before repeating another single effort -- exactly similar to the competitive weight lifter. So his weight training must be on similar lines to the weight lifter -- generally, low repetitions, using heavy weights.

On the other hand, the runner has to maintain a long, sustained effort which demands, to a much higher degree, stamina. His weight training should involve higher repetitions, with lighter poundages.

Here is a list of some useful exercises additional to the standard ones listed.

Jumping Squat
Place the barbell behind the neck as for the ordinary Squat, with the feet held about 18 inches apart. Start the movement by first bending the knees to lower the body about six inches, then spring up in the air as high as possible. Land first on the toes, then allow the heels to touch the ground and lower the body into the regular squat positions. Without pause, return to the upright position and straight into another jump. Continue in this manner until the desired number of repetitions is performed.

Do 1 set of 5 repetitions, then 2 sets of 3, 2 sets of 2, then three or four single movements, increasing the weight as the repetitions are lowered.

Useful for high and long jumpers in particular.

One Arm Power Jerk
Use a dumbbell, holding it at the shoulder, with the feet spaced comfortably apart, free arm held out sideways to help maintain balance. Start by dipping the body a few inches, then quickly re straightening legs and thrusting the dumbbell overhead. As the arm nears the locked position quickly lower the body again by bending the knees to facilitate the arm lock. Straighten the knees again to assume an erect position. Lower dumbbell to shoulder and repeat.

In order to avoid too much weight changing when using a dumbbell (it is easier with a barbell as the discs can be "floated" on each end without unlocking collars) use a fixed poundage and perform 5 or 6 sets of 3 repetitions. Occasionally, use a heavier weight and use 7 or 8 sets of 2 repetitions.

Useful for the shot putter.

Alternate Splitting
A fine coordinated movement that will build leg strength and stamina. Useful for all sportsmen.

Hold a barbell at the shoulders in the clean position or placed behind the shoulders. Start with feet astride about 6 to 9 inches, then simultaneously split both feet and move into the low split position as used in the Snatch, described in Chapter Seventeen, one leg forward, one backward.

Hold on for a second or two to ensure a good balance. Then raise the body a little by a slight straightening of the legs and quickly reverse the leg position by moving the front leg to the rear and the rear leg to the front, going into the low split position as before.

Reverse legs again and continue alternately until the desired number of repetitions is completed.

This is a strenuous exercise and will force one to breathe deeply and rapidly. Perform 3 sets of 8 repetitions ( 4 with each leg).

Punching with Dumbbells
Use two fairly light dumbbells. Start by holding them at the shoulders, leaning forward with the other hand. Continue punching alternately, forwards and backwards as if running.

Perform 2 sets of 10 repetitions with each arm.

Useful for sprinters to give greater strength and control to the arm action.

Fast Deadlift
The Two Hands Deadlift is a fine movement for building rugged bodily power and a strong grip, especially useful for heavy athletics such as hammer throwing and shot putting, also for footballers, and wrestlers, where heavy bodily contact is frequently made.

See Chapter Twenty-three for description of movement, which in the instance should be preformed at a fast tempo. This necessarily cuts down the weight one can use. However, using low repetitions it is possible to work up to reasonably heavy poundages.

Perform 6 sets of 3 repetitions, without replacing the barbell on the floor in between movements, but stopping the downward movement just before the barbell reaches the floor. Make sure that you keep the back as straight as possible throughout.

Stepping on Bench
Soccer players will benefit specially from this excellent leg and stamina movement but it is good for all sportsmen.

Utilize a strong and firm bench. With a barbell placed behind the shoulders, place the right foot on the bench and step up with the left foot. Step off by placing the right foot on the floor, followed by the left foot to complete on repetition.

Then reverse the procedure, stepping up with the left foot this time. Continue in this alternate manner until the desired number of repetitions is completed.

Perform 12 repetitions (6 with each leg). Rest, then perform 10 repetitions.

Pinch Gripping
A strong grip and wrists are essential for many sports, including shot putters, pole vaulters and hammer throwers.

One of the best exercises is pinch gripping with weights. Stand two or three discs, held together, on end and lift them off the floor by gripping them with the fingertips. Hold for a few seconds before replacing. Progression can made by using larger discs to get heavier weight and also by using just two or three fingers at a time -- such as thumb and forefinger, thumb and little finger, etc.

Perform as many repetitions as necessary to give the fingers sufficient work and afterwards alternately grip and relax the fingers to ease off the tension.

Legs Raise with Iron Boots
Fix iron boots or discs to the feet and lie on back. Raise legs upwards, kept straight until they are at right angles to floor. Lower to floor and immediately return for another repetition. It will be easier to concentrate the exercise on the legs and lower abdominals if the hands are held behind the head grasping a loaded barbell on some fixed object.

Useful for high jumpers, who require strong leg extensors and abdominals.

Perform 3 sets of 8 repetitions.

Chinning the Bar
Particularly useful for the pole vaulter, who has to haul himself upwards by pulling down on this pole.

This is a well-known exercise and requires little explanation. Use a variation of grip widths and both over and reverse grips in pulling up to chin level. Progress can be made by attaching weights to the body.

Perform 2 or 3 sets of 6 repetitions When this becomes easy add weight by attaching discs to the waist by using a belt and leather strap.

Alternate Press
Use two dumbbells and perform as described in Chapter Seven. Useful for improving the power of the shoulder and arms' drive for sprinters.

Perform 3 sets of 8 repetitions (4 with each arm).

Lateral Raises
Use both the Lateral Raise Standing and Lying as described in Chapter Seven. Useful for discus throwers, as it develops the deltoids that are strongly employed in swinging the discus and holding the arm out sideways.

Perform 4 sets of 5 repetitions.

Sideways Swing
Stand with feet well astride, holding a dumbbell in front of the chest, with the elbow extending sideways. From here, turn the body to the right (assuming using the right hand first) from hips, at the same time swinging the dumbbell in a circular movement to the right and extending the arms so that the upper body is at right angles to the front with the arm pointing backwards from the front.

Without pause, return to the starting position and repeat. Useful for the discus thrower. Perform 5 sets of 5 repetitions.

Trunk Turning
Stand feet astride with a barbell held across the back of the shoulder. Without moving the feet, twist the body round to the right as far as possible, then return and continue to twist the body round to the opposite side. Continue the twisting movement from one side to the other.

Perform 2 sets of 12 repetitions (6 to each side).

Useful for all activities in which body twists have to be made -- Hammer throwers, footballers, etc.

Repetition Snatching
Perform as described in Chapter Seven. Useful for all sportsmen, as this movement develops all-round power and agility and stamina.

Perform 3 sets of 6 repetitions.

Progression should be made by adding slightly to the weights used every few weeks, or when it is felt that one is capable of using heavier weights. Don't force the progress too much, as a weightlifter might, as the purpose of this form of training is not to build up strength to the same extent that a weightlifter requires. One will get stronger, of course, with continued use of a selection of the exercises but this progress is not so vitally important as it is in the case of a competitive weightlifter.

More chapters from this book below...
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