Imagine that you had $40.00 and you wanted to buy some equipment to add strength training to your routine. What should you buy? It all depends on three questions. What is your current fitness level? What injuries or weaknesses do you have? What is your ultimate goal? If you can answer these three questions then you are on your way to know what to buy. Keep track of your answers below and email me if you have any questions.
What is your current fitness level?
If you are new to strength training, you may want to start with dumbbells. It will help you with muscular imbalances. We all have them but it will make you more aware of them.
If you are trying to increase your weight, a straight bar is a great way to see if you can handle the increase of 5% weight. You will be able to incorporate muscle groups from both sides of the body to help you complete the exercise. You will want to transition to dumbbells eventually to recognize any imbalance.
If you have arthritis or any type of bone injury, a band may be a great transition. Bands work the muscle and not the bone. Bands are also great for muscular fatigue or alternating between a straight bar/dumbbells.
What is Your Answer? _________________________________
What Injuries/Weaknesses Do You Have?
If it has been a while since you have lifted or you are lifting a much lighter weight then you previously did. You will want to use dumbbells. This will allow you to note how much of a strength difference you may have. Dumbbells will allow you to adjust your motion of the exercise as well in case you need to progress slowly to the full extension and flexion needed for that specific exercise.
If you have arthritis or a bone injury, bands could be the better option for you. Also, bands can let you know about some muscle imbalances as well.
A straight bar can be used as a transition to understand the exercise and what the full extension and flexion should be if your are too weak for dumbbells. You will want to work up to dumbbells to create a balance between muscles.
What is Your Answer? _____________________________
What is Your Ultimate Goal?
If your goal is to continually increase your weight then straight bars and dumbbells with bands attached could be your next challenge. You can use all of them separately or even together to add a resistance on the extension portion on many different exercises.
If your goal is to tone, again, all three are the answer. Increases the weight of your straight bar and resistance of your band a little more than your dumbbells initially as you get stronger.
If your goal is to get stronger to function on a day to day basis better, dumbbells may be all you need.
What Is Your Answer? _______________________________
Let me know if this article was beneficial for you! Good Luck!