Workout Routines

Essential Moves For Strength Training

To get wicked strong, you need to have a variety of lifts in your repertoire. Here's 4 moves to start with.

Essential exercises for strength training

Strength Moves Extra

Here are a few extra tips to help you get the most out of these four strength moves

How to: Squat Tips

  • Keep your head neutral and chest high during the entire movement.
  • Your first movement should be back with your glutes, as if to sit in a chair.
  • Maintain a slight arch in your lower back.
  • Your feet should be placed slightly wider then shoulder width apart with your toes pointing slightly outward.

How to: Deadlift Tips

  • Think of the move as a push and a pull—you are pushing through the floor with your heels and pulling the bar up your body using your grip and back.
  • Don't use momentum to get into your next rep. Deadlift equals a dead stop on each rep.
  • Once the bar is off the floor, drive hard into the floor extending your entire body at once.
  • The completed concentric portion of the lift occurs when the body is fully erect. Do not hyperextend your back at the top.

How to: Bench Press Tips

  • Grab a hold of the bar with hands about 6-8 inches outside of shoulder width on each side to keep the emphasis on your pecs.
  • At this bottom position, the bar should cross, or be slightly above, the nipples.
  • Avoid bouncing the bar off your chest, which can reduce muscle recruitment and put your joints at risk.
  • Exhale forcefully as you pass the most difficult part of the movement.

How to: Barbell Row Tips

  • Your body position should remain constant for the entire lift.
  • Flare your elbows out to the side (making about a 45 degree angle) and begin pulling the bar hard to your lower sternum-upper stomach.
  • A little "cheat pull" on the last rep or two is okay for experienced lifters, but even then it is not advisable on every rep.
  • An underhand grip shifts the emphasis to the lower lats and more heavily enlists the help of the biceps.