Resistance training is a fantastic way for athletes to build muscle. Resistance training can utilize things like weights, stretchy resistance bands, or simply body weight. In bodyweight training, people use their own weight as the resistance they need to get bigger and stronger. Think about a push-up. The weight of the whole body is the resistance used to make the arm and chest muscles bigger. Bodyweight exercises can be challenging.
Bodyweight training can be harnessed to make big changes in someone’s physique. It can pay big dividends when it comes to developing existing muscle or build more. It’s not all simple push-ups. Modern bodyweight training measures the tempo an exercise is done at. Moving more slowly during the move and exploding up plyometrically at the end of the move are two wonderful ways to increase the intensity of a movement.
Some bodyweight training also uses objects to make a movement more intense. For example, in an air squat, an object that’s 2 or 3 inches tall can be used to keep the heels lifted off the ground. This move can also be modified by adding an extra quarter or half squat before the athlete comes all the way up. Another optional modification is to add more weight in the form of something like a dumbbell or kettlebell.
A star plank is another great example of a bodyweight exercise. In this exercise, the athlete does a forearm plank on one side. They then lift their other arm straight in the air. One toe is on the floor, while the other foot is also extended into the air. This movement provides a lot more resistance than a traditional plank. It works not just the core but also the shoulders, glutes, and more. A modification that makes this move more challenging is to hold a kettlebell in the upper, extended arm.
Finally, although squats, wall walks, and other moves are a huge component of bodyweight training, don’t discount the push-up. There are many variations of this exercise. They can be great for the shoulders, core, and chest muscles. Walking push-ups and yoga push-ups are some solid alternatives to a standard wide-arm push-up. This is an exercise that can be a cornerstone of any bodyweight training program.