One of the reasons many sports are so appealing, especially to men, is that they can live vicariously through the physical accomplishments of athletes. This is certainly true when it comes to the popularity of the sport of bodybuilding. The magnificent physical specimens on display are an ideal that many men wish they could achieve in their own state of physical fitness.
While sculpting such a perfect physical form that allows you to compete in a bodybuilding competition requires a total commitment that few can realize, the good that bodybuilding does is that it inspires tens of thousands of men to become more physically fit as well. The principles of bodybuilding are based on scientific and medical knowledge of how muscle is built for maximum visual appeal. What goes on inside the body during a bodybuilding regimen of exercise is muscle if developed through intense cell growth combined with very specific diet and exercise disciplines that all go into what is known as bodybuilding.
Generally, the reasons people get interested in bodybuilding are varied. For many, it is a good form of healthy recreation that is relaxing and rewarding as the fruits of bodybuilding come about and they get in great shape. Others use bodybuilding as part of a program of personal growth because of the emphasis on personal discipline. And, of course, there are those who wish to participate in the sport of bodybuilding, which involves learning to compete in bodybuilding shows and competitions.
If you or a family member are interested in bodybuilding for the purpose of competing in the sport, that is an ambitious path but one with many rewards. The sport of bodybuilding has seen a surge in popularity to the point that there are efforts being made to include bodybuilding as part of Olympic competition. The only drawback is that the actual competition where bodybuilders vie for top honors does not include athletic activity. So that trait of bodybuilding competition is holding it back at the Olympic level.
In a competitive bodybuilding event, bodybuilders come together and step through a series of poses that are specifically designed to showcase the particular muscle groups, which dramatically demonstrate the development and unique physique of each competing bodybuilder. The sport of bodybuilding should not be confused with weightlifting, which is a separate sport in which the actual act of lifting large amounts of weight are what comprises the heart of the competition.
The common element of weight lifting and bodybuilding is how training is conducted. To be successful in either sport involves a progressive program of increased weight training targeted at building and shaping specific muscle groups. The two goals of this kind of bodybuilding is to dramatically increase muscle mass and then to shape and train those muscle groups to accomplish the goals of the competition.
To be successful in bodybuilding, the muscles are carefully sculpted so that they are aesthetically pleasing and demonstrate shape and mass well. In that way, bodybuilders use weights and strength to reach that perfect form for bodybuilding posing but not specifically to be able to demonstrate strength as part of the judging of the sport.
The discipline of working out every day for weeks and months on end must be adhered to religiously so that the muscle groups develop together and the shape is in symmetry to itself in preparation for competition. But the discipline of bodybuilding doesn’t only occur in the gym. The successful bodybuilder focuses every aspect of life toward that goal of success in bodybuilding competitions including decisions about diet, sleep and lifestyle so nothing is allowed to interfere with his focus on the sport.
If the bodybuilder needs additional help “bulking up” especially when first starting out in bodybuilding training, he may use diet supplements and shakes to get enough protein and other essential diet elements that will help his body quickly develop during training. How these supplements are used as a part of a bodybuilder’s diet should be monitored by a trainer so that the bodybuilder sees success in his bodybuilding training but does so in a healthy way. If he is successful in that goal, the chances of a long career of success in bodybuilding are greatly improved.
Need more ideas? Here are some successful Body Building Techniques
The most successful body building techniques incorporate proven weight routines. A weight routine is a set of exercises, done in repetition, that develops specific parts of the body. For example, to build chest muscles, a body builder may use a weight routine that incorporates flat bench press (3 repetitions), bench dumbbell (2 repetitions) and inclined bench press (3 repetitions). The other important function a weight routine serves is to split a training program so different muscle groups are used.
Dumbbells are a common piece of equipment used to build bigger biceps. The most popular technique to get the desired result is to hold the dumbbell closer to the inside of the plates. Routines for building biceps include dumbbell curls either inclined or standing, or both.
Building Chest Muscle
Good chest muscle building exercises are routines that incorporate bench presses and flyes. An even more effective way to build chest muscle is to split the chest into 3 zones – upper, middle and lower. By working each separately, using exercises that specifically target that area, you can build up some impressive chest muscle fairly quickly.
For instance, do your upper chest exercises on a 30-45% incline bench. Incline barbell and incline dumbbell flyes are excellent for working upper chest muscles. On the other hand, the lower chest muscles are best exercised using a 30-45% decline bench. You would use decline barbell and decline dumbbell flyes to build these muscles. A flat bench works best for the middle chest muscles. So you’d do flat barbell and flat dumbbell flyes on a flat bench.
Moving Onto Shoulder Training
The shoulders are made up of 3 main muscles – the lateral, anterior and posterior deltoids. Effective shoulder training to get big shoulders requires working all 3. The anterior deltoid usually gets some work in chest workouts. To build up the lateral and posterior deltoids requires additional exercises targeting these two muscles. Generally the best way to do this is with heavy barbell and dumbbell pressing in short reps as opposed to a lot of rep work with lighter weights. You should also focus on shoulder exercises that work effectively with progressive overload, a technique used to progressively add more weight to what is being lifted.
Matching Up The Back With Back Exercises
The back is one area many body builders overlook. But if you want your back to match up with those impressive chest, shoulder and bicep muscles, you will need to include back exercises in your bodybuilding routine.
Good workouts for the Lower Trapezius or lower back muscles include stiff-legged good mornings and hyper-extensions. For the middle back muscles or Rhomboids, you can do a seated cable row and bent-over barbell rows. Your Latissimus Dorsi will benefit from wide-grip lat pull-downs and pull-ups. And last but not least, try upright rows and barbell shrugs for your Trapezius.
But before starting any body-building workout, be sure to warm up properly. This will reduce the risk of damaging muscles and tendons. Stretch the muscles you’re going to be working. Also avoid lifting more weight than your body can capably handle to avoid serious injury.