If you don't have an elaborate home gym OR you are looking for some ways to gain strenght at home OR you are looking for some alternatives to your regular workouts than hopefully this will help. I have spent the last 15 years of my life playing sports. At one time I was a hardcore gym rat and loved any exercises that caused pain and increased my size. Some of the most brutal exercises I ever did were non weight based or lighter weights. Now exluding the best muscle builders (squat, deadlift, leg press and most powerlifting exercises) there are ways to build / maintain muscle mass. I hope this thread can throw some good ideas out for you to enjoy playing with workouts.
I won't be going into normal exercises as most people know what a front raise is (for example). I will only be covering exercises that are semi unique or avoided.
NOTE: Some of these will include dumbells, but they are easy and cheap to get anyways.
1 - Arnold press - Start with your palms facing your shoulder. As you press the weights straight up rotate your wrist so that your palms are facing forward at the peak of the movement. This works the rotator cuff, anterior, leteral and posterior deltoid.
2 - Lateral Presses (I think may also be called Arnold laterals)- Perform a lateral raise. Keep the weights at your side with you elbows slightly bent. Lift your arms out to the side keeping the weights more or less even with the ground (parellel) now continue the movement until the weight meet above your head. Don't bend your arms more keep your arms ridgid but allow the weights to meet and slowly bring them back down. THIS DOESN'T REQUIRE A LOT OF WEIGHT. This works you shoulders and some of your upper back (I started performing this exercise to activate some dead muscles incured by some nerve damage from a football game last year. This is a killer)
3 - Russian Pushups - WARNING - You must be above average strenght for YOUR weight you perform this. Do a hand stand against the wall. Lower your body until your nose touches the ground and push back up. I can't do this anymore as I weight to much and my shoulder isn't quite recovered but this is a killer workout.
4 - Rear flyes - Often neglected bodypart is your rear delts. Bend over in an airplane position. To explain bend your legs slightly, keeping your back straight with your chest out lean your upper body over. You should be able to get to around 45 degree to the ground. This kind of looks like the position an airplane is in when landing. Now keeping your back straight with the weights down in front of you lift outwards. This will look like bent over lateral raises but is working your rear delt. If you have a hard time with the standing. Sit in a chair, lean your upper body over till your chest is a little above your legs and with the weight under your legs (Sit on the edge of the chair). Now lift outwards. Same movement slightly different technique.
1 - Pushup - Hey what can I say it works. Is it too easy for you. Place you feet on a chair and hands on individual chairs and go down until your chest is EVEN with your palms.You can also alter the angle of the push. Place your feet higher than your chest. Place your chest higher than your feet (not too far as it becomes more of a shoulder exercise). Place your palms wider (if you shoulders can handle it), place them narrower (works the triceps more). Within the pushup realm of exercises you have many many options and selections.
2 - Flyes - I do these on a euro ball (many names but that is what I call them) I start in the stretch positions and slowly bring the weight up. As the weight gets to the top I twist my arm so my pinkies touch (if the weight wasn't in the way). On the way back down I rerotate my hands so they are at the normal position and let my chest STRETCH for a second or two (I mean stretch damnit )
PS - I don't like nor have I ever been good at bench press. My arms are REALLY long which prevents much actual work on the chest preceisely. Bench press attackes my tris and shoulders far more than my chest. Pushups worked.
Nothing special here only 1 exercise you may not use and a technicque.
1 - Hammer curl - This works part of the bicep not usually hit. There is too parts to your bicep (bi ). You can see one of the muscles, that big ball when you flex, the other one is actually the important one. It is the bigger of the two AND pushes the other muscle up making it look bigger. Cool eh? Grab the dumbell. Pretend you are going to hammer something. The weight should be up and down instead of sideways (that sounds kinda dumb but I can't think of a better way right now) do a curl. This one doesn't hurt and I find it doesn't isolate well but it WORKS.
2 - 21's. PAIN. I love love love this routing. Grab a lighter weight than you are used to using. Curl the weight halfway up (arms should be 90 degrees) lower the weight. Do this 7 times. After 7 curl the weight to the topmost point. Now lower it to 90 degree and lift back. When you have completed 7 you biceps should be pumped up. Your aren't done. Lower all the way and do 7 regular curls with that weight. This is a non stop exercise and may take you a couple of times to figure out the best weight.
1 - Kickbacks - lean over on a chair. Keep your elbow in tight to your ribs and parellel to your back. Without moving your upper arm move your lower arm until it is straight.
2 - Dips - I love this exercise. Grab two stable chairs (grab two of the three you did pushups with ) Place your heels on one chair and your hands on the other with your body facing upwards. Lower your body until your upper arm is 90 degree with your lower arm. Push back up. Easy but this one can hurt. If your are too light place some weight on your abdomen.
I LOVE killing my legs. I have found over the past 10 years how to destroy my legs and build them up. I don't really have to work them out anymore but do periodically.
1 - Walking lunges. (your can do this holding dumbells but until you get your balance don't try it) I have a hallway I do this in. I can do 3 reps in one walk. Take a long stride (LONG) Your front leg should end up bent in front of you. Try to get it so you can land with you knee directly over your ankle. You will be in the fully stretched position. Explod forward doing the same with your other leg. Do this until you run out of room. Ensure you keep your knee over your ankle. You can perform this exercise standing still moving forward and then pushing back but it isn't nearly as effective. This strenghten your whole leg. You butt, hamstring, inner and outer thigh and the biker ball.
This link below is the stationary one. If you can WALK it out.
2 - Sissy Squats - This is a killer if done right. No weight needed. Find something to hang onto. Now squat down. Easy right. Well lean your upper body backwards at the bottom. With your body leaned back push upwards. Keep the lean backwards and lower yourself. This will work your legs in the stretch position and is a killer. If you have to hold some weight on your abdomen (easier with metal plates) . The further back your lean the tougher it will be. (There is a machine for this exercise but you can succesfully perform this without the mount)
I don't really have anything for back. I am too heavy to do pullups effectively and I need BUCKETLOADS of weight to actually effect my muscle back there. So until I get a gym membership I hope I just keep maintaining.
There are more exercises but this will help you get a good start.
Hope this helps some of you and remember the key to lean muscle growth is working out AND protein intake. With that new lean muscle you will be stronger, burn calories more efficiently and perform better at whatever sport you love.
Last edited by Maelstrom; 10-13-02 at 07:20 PM.
Good list of exercises.Lunges in particular I have recently added into my routine and they are killer(must be why most people avoid them).Also pullups(particularly for those with a lighter bodyweight )could be added to this list for back .I have progress from barely 4 to 10 widegrip with good form( legs crossed and bent back to stabilize and chin above bar and full slow descent).You can also vary hand spacing with a wide grip hitting lats/width and closer grip/hands parelell hitting midback/thickness.Also behind neck pulldowns with a midlength palms in grip work as a good low-moderate weight "toning" exercise though can be dangerous if done with heavy weight with poor form.Got this one from Flex Wheeler who definatey has some definition in his back.Various one arm cable pulls also work for toning but I agree to build an impressive back you need heavy weight.One3 of my favorites is right after deadlifts and usually to end the workout I do one arm T rowsstrattling the still laded bar at one end and gradding with one hand near the collar and lifting up and out (ir bar is between legs).This has been one of my favorite exercises ever since I began since I get such a good feel in my back from it and thus know its working.Also King Kamali recently described doing a similar exercise and called it old school ship galley hard core or something to that effect. OK enough on this lol.
Rows never did much for me. Deadlifts, Pulldowns, Standing barbell rows, tbar standing rows (sort of a machine), pullups and extensions were the only thing that hit my back with any success.
I can't do anything behind the neck with my shoulders. Sheer pain and numbness and a great loss in strength. Works ok for some people but for others is a killer (in a bad way). Behind the neck shoulder presses fall in the same category for me.
The exercise I was describing was actually a tbar row only done strattling a load barbell done onehanded rather than a tbar contraption(thus can be done at home easily.)I agree I've never found dumbell rowing or the one arm cable pulls I mentioned very effective but being a hardgainer I have to train for mass not toning to see any results anyway.
Ahh sorry bout that. Ok I agree. I am not a hardgainer but a size freak. I like being big and strong so I almost exclusively use compound exercises in my workouts. More pain and more gain