On Muscle Pairs and Strength Training

November 22, 2017

When I look online for workouts to try, the first results are for the cosmetic body parts. By that, I mean the rock hard abs, strong biceps, and powerful thighs. The issues with these workouts is that some of them only focus on the aesthetic muscle groups. This creates problems because when working on one muscular group, you have to focus on its opposing muscles. When doing abdominal exercises, you must match that with upper, middle and lower back routines. You have to work your biceps and triceps, all parts of the leg, etc. The reason for this is twofold. First, your body looks off when you have a nice midsection, but chicken legs. Secondly, you’re only as strong as your weakest muscles. It doesn’t matter how awesome your abs look if your back is weak.

I focus on the abdominal region so much because they’re usually shown off in fitness ads. Ultimately, if you only work the abs and neglect the back, your rippling abs are only for show and have no other purpose beyond cosmetic reasons. You’ll hunch over, not walk straight, and feel back pains. To alleviate this, I highly recommend making sure you work out every muscle group. The primary way I do so is through total body strength training/body weight exercises one day a week (while at college, intensity is increased when at home) to make sure I hit every area. Then I use the other days for focusing more on specific muscle groups, as in an abs/back day, leg day, and arms day.

The main opposing muscle pairs to worry about are:

  • Quadriceps/hamstrings
  • Biceps/Triceps
  • Shins/Calves
  • Pectorals (major)/Deltoids
  • Trapezius/Latissimus Dorsi

Through properly training these antagonist muscle groups, your body will look amazing, and your strength will be real. Feel free to ask any questions relating to antagonist muscle groups in the comments!

Best,

V

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