Strength training at home is an effective way to build muscle, increase strength, and improve overall health and fitness. It is also a convenient and cost-effective alternative to gym memberships, especially during the pandemic when many gyms are closed or have limited capacity. However, creating a home strength training routine using equipment like barbells and power racks can be challenging, especially for beginners. The following points will provide a step-by-step guide on creating a home strength training routine that works for you.
Determine Your Fitness Level
Once you have identified your fitness goals, the next step is to determine your fitness level. As a beginner, you can start with basic exercises and light weights. On the other hand, if you are an advanced lifter, you may need to incorporate more advanced exercises and heavier weights into your routine.
For example, the snatch is a full-body exercise that involves lifting the barbell from the ground to overhead in one smooth motion. The clean and jerk is another full-body exercise involving lifting the same equipment to the shoulders and pushing it overhead.
Create a Plan
After assessing your fitness goals and determining your fitness level, the next step is to create a plan. Your plan should include the type of exercises, number of sets and reps, and frequency of your workouts. A basic home strength training routine should include exercises targeting all major muscle groups, including the chest, back, shoulders, arms, and legs.
Choose the Right Equipment
The equipment required for your home strength training routine will vary depending on your fitness objectives and current fitness level. Essential equipment such as dumbbells, resistance bands, a stability ball, and a yoga mat can help you get started. However, if you have sufficient space and budget, consider investing in a power rack, barbells or weight bars, and weight plates to expand your training options.
For example, several types of weight bars are available, each designed for specific purposes. The most common type of bar is the standard one, which is around 7 feet long and weighs approximately 45 pounds. Olympic ones are similar in length but have a thicker diameter and can handle more weight. Deadlift bars are longer and more flexible, which allows for a greater range of motion during deadlift exercises. Specialty bars, such as the safety squat and trap bars, are designed for specific exercises and have unique features to provide additional comfort and safety during use.
Perform Compound Exercises
Compound exercises are multi-joint exercises that target several muscle groups at one time. They are more efficient compared to isolation workouts, which aim at only a single muscle group at a time. Examples include squats, deadlifts, chest presses, and pull-up exercises. These exercises should form the foundation of your home strength training routine.
Include Isolation Exercises
Isolation exercises to target specific muscle groups and is essential for developing muscle size and definition. Some examples include bicep curls, tricep extensions, and calf raises. While compound exercises should be the focus of your routine, adding isolation exercises can help you achieve your fitness goals faster.
Increase Weight and Intensity Over Time
To see progress in your strength training routine, you need to gradually increase the weight and intensity of your exercises over time. This is known as progressive overload, essential for muscle growth and strength gains. Start with light weights and low intensity, gradually increasing as you get stronger.
Creating a home strength training routine that works for you requires careful planning. By following these steps, you can build strength, increase muscle, and improve overall fitness from the comfort of your own home.