I am sure that, at least so far, you have done several types of resistance training, their purpose being, among other things, to increase muscle mass. Whether or not they influenced you, only you can give an honest answer in this case.
The human body, of its kind, is a bit lazier. He will never have too much muscle mass if he is not seriously worked out. He will be content with muscles large enough to cope with ordinary, daily efforts. So, if you want to have more muscles (and possibly brag about them), get ready for a serious effort.
Moreover, arm yourself with a lot of patience, because your muscle mass will not explode after a single workout or after a single portion of supplements. Muscle mass is built over time, through a combination of exercise, diet, and rest.
While it’s best to not solely rely on bodyweight training, there’s no denying its power when it comes to building muscle and strength in the comfort of your own home. What’s more, with proper guidance, one can make excellent progress while doing just that.
So next time you don’t feel like going to the gym, get yourself a workout plan and head to your local park instead, you might be surprised at how effective bodyweight exercises are at building muscle.
Can you build muscle mass at home by just training with your body weight? The answer is simple: YES! You can build muscle mass without all those barbells, discs, and dumbbells in the gym.
The truth is that you need at most a pull-up bar, a set of resistance bands, and some parallels.
But of course, it will be a bit more complicated to use your body weight to add muscle mass.
Top 4 benefits of bodyweight exercises
When it comes to bodyweight exercises, there are many benefits that you can achieve. They could help you bulk up, lose weight and gain a lot of muscle mass.
The best part about these exercises is that they require very little equipment to none, which is ideal if you’re on a tighter budget or if you simply don’t want to spend the money on additional items to train with.
You won’t need anything but your own body and willpower.
If you’re looking for ways to burn calories or gain muscle mass, bodyweight exercises should be an essential part of your exercise routine.
Strength or endurance training can only be done with the help of body weight and gravity. Many factors influence the increase of muscle mass, not just the lifting of heavier weights.
1. Activates stabilizing muscles
Weight training does not always activate the stabilizing muscles. Stabilizer muscles are smaller muscles that assist the main muscles during exercise. For example, when we do a pull-up, the triceps serves as a stabilizer.
Bodyweight workouts always recruit stabilizing muscles. The need to keep the whole body in balance, and in control, makes the stabilizing muscles stimulated. Both the chest press, the bench, and the push-ups, are exercises for the chest, shoulders, and triceps.
But the press at the bench offers more stability the fact that you sit on the bench, you have a point of support. While doing pushups involves more movement of the joints and the use of the core muscles.
2. High accessibility and adaptability
Bodyweight workouts can be done anywhere. You can easily make changes. To make your bodyweight exercises more intense, you can:
• slow down or increase the tempo
• add pauses, increase the reps or duration, decrease pause
• optimize or change the angle, for example by lifting the legs
• combine different exercises.
3. Better mobility
Gaining strength does not improve your mobility. But by improving your mobility, you increase your strength. Exercises with body weight require much more control over how the body moves. This is because this is not a fixed position. The body can move freely leading to better mobility.
Better mobility allows the body to cope better with the stress of training. This helps you improve your technique and increase muscle mass.
4. Injury prevention
Compared to other types of training, you are much less likely to get injured. Bodyweight exercises are mostly functional movements. Provides muscle stimulation without putting pressure on the joints. While lifting heavy weights puts a lot of pressure on your wrists and joints.
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Muscles can’t make a difference
People believe that weights and sophisticated equipment are needed to get an effective workout. The more complicated and expensive the device, the more it is appreciated. These rumors have been spread by gyms to get subscribers and device manufacturers to sell. Everyone wants to take your money 😊)).
If I pull on the machine, either the bar, or if I lift a dumbbell or a boulder, the muscle cannot distinguish between them. He feels the tension and effort to which he is subjected and that’s it.
What matters when using bodyweight exercises for building muscle mass
The most important thing for gaining muscle mass is progress, regardless of the accessories used in training, whether you are pulling irons, equipment, or training with your body weight. Over time, the tension to which the muscle is subjected must increase.
This can be done by increasing the number of reps per series, increasing the weight used, or choosing more demanding exercises. In other words, you need to become stronger.
The most effective exercises for increasing muscle mass are the basic exercises. This is recognized by all professional bodybuilders. In the periods when they want muscle growth, they make up their training using almost exclusively such exercises.
As there is at least one basic exercise for each muscle group that can be done with body weight, you can increase muscle mass without problems.
Choose the exercises that allow you to do a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 15 repetitions per series. If you can perform for example more than 15 push-ups per series you have to choose a harder exercise such as parallel push-ups or back-weight push-ups (a partner, a backpack filled with books, or chains).
The most effective bodyweight exercises for muscle mass
There are many effective bodyweight exercises for both the upper and lower body. Let’s see which are the best for muscle growth.
These are compound exercises for multiple muscle groups, such as the chest, shoulders, and arms. This exercise has different variations. Try to adapt it according to your fitness level. All you need are one or two parallel bars, a bench or chair, etc.
Push-ups are very effective for upper body strength. These involve the chest, triceps, shoulders, and also core muscles. It is very important to involve the core muscles as well.
There are many variations of push-ups, so you can change them to be lighter or heavier, depending on your level of training.
This exercise is effective for the back muscles (latissimus dorsi, rhomboid), but also involves the shoulders and arms. When you do it, due to the vertical position, gravity increases the difficulty.
There are several types of lunges, but whatever you choose, lunges are a very good exercise for the lower body. The buttocks, quadriceps, and hamstring are used in the execution of this exercise.
Being a unilateral or monoarticular exercise, it can help correct muscle imbalances.
For lower pressure on the joints, opt for reverse lunges or regular lunges and if you want something more advanced, opt for Bulgarian split squats.
Squats activate the large leg muscles. buttocks, hamstrings, and quasi work together to perform this movement. To make this exercise easier, you can do it on a box or a chair.
To increase the difficulty, you can choose the jump squat, or you can lower it more when performing the squat.
This is an advanced bodyweight exercise. The benefits of this exercise include unilateral balance and strength. By doing this, you will notice improvements in flexibility and mobility
For regression, you can choose to use a TRX for support or something to stick to. You can adjust how much you go down using a bench or a chair to sit on. The further you go, the lower, you go.
Here are some exercises for each muscle group that has proven to be very effective over time:
Back – wide grip pull-ups, Supermans
Chest – parallel push-ups, push-ups with extra weight (a backpack filled with books)
Shoulders – stand-up push-ups, Pike push-ups
Legs – Pistol Squat, sprint (yes, sprinting builds impressive legs), squats, lunges
Biceps – narrow supine grip pull-ups
Triceps – parallel push-ups, diamond push-ups, bench dips
I guarantee you that a training program consisting only of these exercises can bring you the best progress in muscle mass in the shortest time.
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How to incorporate bodyweight exercises into a routine for building muscle mass.
You can use bodyweight exercises to incorporate them into your program. If you are a beginner, start with bodyweight exercises then as you progress add weights if necessary.
Also, bodyweight exercises combine very well with corrective ones. If you only do exercises with body weight, opt for 3-5 workouts/week.
Start with exercises for all muscle groups in each workout. Opt for 2-3 exercises for both the upper and lower body. Since you use your body weight, you can increase your frequency. Aim to perform a certain number of reps in a certain amount of time. To build muscle mass, you need to exhaust your muscles.
Adjust breaks as needed. Intensify training by increasing the number of reps or working on time. You can also decrease your rest time.
If you’re on a tight budget and short on space, bodyweight exercises are a great way to build muscle mass. Many people don’t realize that they can lift weights without costly equipment by using nothing but their bodies.
Bodyweight exercises also allow you to do away with the hassles of going to the gym (commuting to and from, showering in place of change, etc.) and focus on your workouts instead.
The balance between the two types of exercises (bodyweight vs. weight) is the key to effective training. Both variants can be perfectly combined in the same workout, which is even recommended.
Always set goals for each type of exercise and keep them progressive. Try to get more reps, heavier variations added weight over time, and don’t forget to change your workout schedule at certain intervals to combat capping.
You can do this by creating a training sheet or by calling on a trainer who knows the most effective exercises to increase muscle mass without using classic devices. I recommend the last option, especially if you want to avoid injuries and congestion in gyms.
I hope that this article has demonstrated to you that you can gain muscle mass at home, with bodyweight exercises only. With the proper diet and workout plan, everyone can achieve their desired level of fitness.
Or you can try my exercise programs below:
I recommend the following full-body bodyweight home exercise programs (no equipment needed), created by me, which I have selected for you by category, and are designed to help you shape a harmonious and toned body:
• Full Body Workouts: HERE, HERE, and HERE
• Abs Workouts: HERE, HERE, HERE
• Warm-Up Workout: HERE
Good luck and a muscle mass as big and well-defined as possible!
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