Whether your goal is to pack on muscle, lose fat, or simply build a healthy, sexy body, there are certain weight training exercises that need to be a part of every guy’s routine. With these basic lifts you don’t need to throw a lot of weight around. It’s all about performing each rep of each set with good form and perfect technique. Here are five exercises every man should master. Try 3-4 sets of eight to twelve reps twice per week for guaranteed results (Photo by OCTAVIO LOMELI).
Squats are king. Whether you want to drop weight, build strength, or increase natural testosterone production, it all starts with the squat. Begin simply with body weight squats or exercise ball squats against the wall and get the form down perfectly. Consult a personal trainer, look up a tutorial online, check out how other guys do it, then proceed to the squat rack with confidence!
Bench presses rule. When you think strength training and bodybuilding, there’s probably no better exercise than the bench press for targeting chest, back and arms. Getting proper form down is not hard, but essential. You’re merely picking up weight- barbells or dumbbells- and pushing them up above your head and chest as you lie flat on a bench. When you lower the weight, keep elbows parallel to the floor, then push up forcefully with all of your might. As with any of these exercises, it’s always safer to have a spotter once you start tackling heavier weights.
Deadlifts promote brute strength. This is the simplest lift you can do – you’re merely picking up as much weight as you can and putting it down again. There are many ways to perform deadlifts, with dumbbells, a barbell, etc. Just make sure to bend the knees, lift with core, butt and legs and be careful about your lower back.
The power clean or hang clean lift develops upper body like no other lift. A bit more complicated, but incredibly effective, this exercise may take practice to learn the form, so begin with a light barbell and give yourself plenty of space. Basically, you’re picking up a weight off the floor, hoisting it to your waist, and then under your chin, and finally back down to the floor.
Rows build boulder shoulders and a strong back. There are many ways to do this exercise – with a barbell, dumbbells, rope attachments or on machines. You can perform it standing or seated. Basically, you’re just mimicking the movement you’d do if you were rowing a boat, pulling weight toward yourself.
Push-ups are great and they can be performed easily anywhere anytime. You may not be able to perform one of these at first, but just keep at it. Start with modified push-ups against the wall, then push-ups on the floor. Bench presses and power clean lifts will help to build and strengthen upper body and soon you’ll be blasting chest and shoulders with sets and sets of push-ups.
Always remember to keep your workouts consistent. Keep your routines interesting, be mindful of good form and keep these 5 exercises in mind whenever you go to the gym and expect results.