Strength Training Exercises
Gaining strength in the gym is all about choosing the correct exercises and putting in the effort. You are not going to gain a lot of overall body strength by going from the pec deck machine to the leg extension station, this is the wrong approach for someone wishing to gain raw strength. Isolation exercises for the most part should be thrown out of the window, with the major compound movements taking their rightful place (arguably this is the case for many non strength gym goers also). A short session can be very effective, so we can limit ourselves to three exercises during a session, targeting the majority of muscle groups.
Below are a handful of effective strength training exercises which can be performed.
The bench press is a popular upper body exercise which primarily stresses the chest, but also incorporates the shoulders and triceps. A narrow grip bench press can be used to increase the strength of the triceps to a greater degree.
Strict over head press
The strict press ensures the shoulders and triceps are the only body parts responsible for the over head press. Understandably, you are going to tire on this exercise pretty quickly compared to the push press (mentioned next) as the triceps and shoulders are relatively small and weak muscle groups compared to the lower body
This exercise is similar to the script over head press except (and as you may have already guessed) it is not as strict. Instead, the movement incorporates the lower body as a partial squat is performed at the start of the exercise to increase the drive as the bar is pressed above the head.
Bent over row
A under hand or over hand grip is suitable for the bent over row. The bent over row exercises the back and arm flexor muscles and can be performed using a dumbbell (one arm dumbbell row) or with a barbell. Whilst improving our strength requires a high load, it is important to retain sound posture and minimise hip movement during the lift.
The deadlift is a great test of raw power. Lifting a dead weight off the ground requires strength from the entire lower body, grip, the core, and many muscles of the upper body and torso. New trainers, as with all exercises, should seek help regarding how to safely perform the deadlift from a qualified PT.
The so called King of All Exercises! The squat effectively targets the entire lower body, as well as the core. Focusing on the squat will ensure massive leg strength increases.
A sample workout plan for strength
We could use the 5 x 5 rep/set scheme (5 reps for 5 sets for each exercise).
Bent over row
Selection of core exercises