What are the Best Bodybuilding Exercises?

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  • Written By: Alex Paul
  • Edited By: Jacob Harkins
  • Last Modified Date: 07 February 2020
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The best bodybuilding exercises for a specific person will depend on his or her goals. For example, some athletes define best as being the exercise that provides the quickest results while others consider it to be exercises that are the safest or will allow for the greatest muscle gain with minimum effort. Although it’s difficult to define the best bodybuilding exercises for everyone there is no doubt that compound exercises — exercises that work a number of muscles at the same time — can provide the quickest increase in muscle mass and are more efficient than isolation exercises. Examples of compound exercises include squats, bench presses and dead lifts.

Squats are often considered to be one of the best bodybuilding exercises as this exercise works a number of muscles at the same time. Although the greatest strain can be felt through the quadriceps muscles the it also targets the gluteus muscles, hamstrings and calves. The downside to squats is that if the exercise isn’t performed correctly it can cause injury. To begin with the feet should be around shoulder width apart and the bum shouldn’t drop below the knees.


The bench press is the upper body equivalent to squats in that it targets a number of different muscles at the same time. As with squatting, the form of the athlete during a bench press is important and the weight should not be increased too quickly. A bench press is performed in a prone position with the athlete situated on a specially designed weight bench for safety.

Aside from finding the best bodybuilding exercises for an athlete’s particular goals it’s also important to set the correct amount of repetitions. A simple method which is used by a number of top body builders is the 10 sets of 10 repetitions training method. By performing 10 sets of 10 repetitions the athlete will nearly always push through the plateau, which is commonly reached with amateur bodybuilding exercises.

Although these are some of the best bodybuilding exercises there are a number of others which can be used such as leg presses and chin ups. There are also many isolation exercises — exercises which target specific muscles — that are useful for increasing muscle mass of a certain area. Along with performing strengthening exercises it’s also important to eat the correct diet and take regular breaks from working out in order to give the body time to recover before moving on.


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