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Tips For Trainers: Body Weight Exercises & Progression

June 9, 2017

Body weight exercises are great for beginner clients because they allow movement patterns to be taught with more comfort and less intimidation. A few good body weight exercises to teach beginners are:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Push-ups
  • Walk outs
  • Supermans

Why Body Weight Exercises?

Body weight exercises are good when working all common underactive muscles to yield more effective and coordinated movement patterns in someone who is not used to performing these motions. These movement patterns have to be taught and strengthened before individuals can use an external force such as bands, dumbbells, and barbells to progress those movements.

Body weight exercises are also a great way to assess how much damage is actually being put on muscles and how quickly muscles recover. For example, for the first couple of workouts, a client does a total of 30 body weight squats during a session and the next day they are so sore they can barely walk.

Even if a client’s movement patterns indicate they can get under a bar, it can be dangerous to progress too quickly; it is often best to avoid putting too much stress on the muscles until you are sure they can recover properly. Newbies should stick to body weight resistance until post-workout chronic soreness subsides.

Body Weight Workouts Must Progress To Succeed

In the beginning, body weight exercises will get the job done and clients will notice inches lost along with weight loss when they first begin resistance training. However, it is important to know there is a low ceiling for benefits with body weight movements. Results will come quickly at first before slowly dying off unless there is continual progress with these movements.

Just like any fitness journey, in order to achieve results, a client’s goals must be never-ending. Incorporating isolation machines, such as TRUE’s FORCE line,will allow you to create more stress on the client’s muscles than they could with body weight alone. This will cause a longer recovery period, which requires energy expenditure.  Lifting as heavy as you can throughout a rep range repetitively requires your body to use the food you’re taking in to replenish your muscles rather than store as fat. This will also help speed up your metabolism.

In addition to these benefits, weight training will yield muscle gain if progressed properly. The more muscle someone has, the easier it is for them to shed fat since muscles require more energy to be maintained in the body.  Therefore, the more muscle someone has, the more calories they will burn on a daily basis just by doing common activities. Combined with an organized program, you will eventually see steady results.

Up Next: Tips For Trainers: Weight Training Dos & Don’ts