Young men and woman doing bodyweight exercises and lifting weights

It’s a common belief that lifting weights is the best way to build muscle, but there’s actually a lot to be said about bodyweight exercises. In fact, some people argue that bodyweight exercises are actually better for building muscle than weight training.

The answer to this question depends on a number of factors, including your goals, your experience level, and your schedule. Here’s a closer look at the pros and cons of both types of exercise so you can decide which is right for you.

The Benefits of Weight Training

Group of young people exercising with weights on cross-training in gym

If you’re looking to build muscle and improve your overall health, weights could be the answer for you. Weights provide a number of benefits that bodyweight exercises can’t match.

Increased muscle mass

The main benefit of weight training is the ability to develop and increase muscle mass. The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolism will be, and the more calories you will burn at rest. Muscle is also denser than fat, so weight training can help to tone your body and give you a more defined appearance.

Increased strength

One of the major benefits of weight training is increased strength. With regular training, you will be able to lift heavier weights and perform more reps than you could before. This is because your muscles become stronger and more efficient at contracting when they are exposed to resistance training.

Increased bone density

There are many benefits to weight training, but one of the most important is increased bone density. As we age, our bones tend to become thinner and more fragile. This can lead to a number of health problems, including osteoporosis. Weightlifting helps to combat this by increasing the density of our bones.

Increased metabolism

Weight training has been shown to increase metabolism during and after exercise. In one study, participants who lifted weights burned more calories in the hours after their workout than those who didn’t lift weights.

Other research has shown that weight training can help you maintain your weight loss in the long term. In one study, people who completed a 12-week weight loss program and then continued to lift weights for another 12 weeks were able to maintain their initial weight loss.

There are several reasons why weight training may help to increase your metabolism. First, lifting weights causes your body to use more energy (in the form of calories) both during and after exercise. Second, muscle tissue is more active than other tissues in your body, so it burns more calories even when you’re not exercising.

If you’re looking to boost your metabolism and lose weight, adding some weight training to your routine is a great way to do it!

The Benefits of Bodyweight Exercises

two people working out

If you’re new to weight training, bodyweight exercises can be a great way to get started. They’re simple to perform and don’t require any equipment other than your own body.

Increased muscle endurance

Bodyweight exercises are a great option if you’re looking for increased muscle endurance. Unlike weight training, which can cause fatigue and muscle soreness, bodyweight exercises help you build endurance by working your muscles over an extended period of time.

This is especially beneficial for athletes who need to maintain their muscle strength and power over long periods of time, such as during a marathon or triathlon.

Increased flexibility

One of the main benefits of bodyweight exercises is that they improve your flexibility. As you perform the exercises, your muscles and joints are required to move through a greater range of motion than with weight-lifting exercises. This can help to loosen up your muscles and joints, making them more flexible. Additionally, the stretching inherent in many bodyweight exercises can also help increase your flexibility.

Increased coordination

Bodyweight exercises require you to use multiple muscle groups at the same time, which can help improve your coordination. Coordination is the ability to use your body movements efficiently and effectively. You can move more smoothly and efficiently when you improve your coordination, leading to better performance in sports or even dancing.

The Importance of Progressive Overload

Progressing from one weightlifting routine to the next is important to get the most out of your training. Overload, or the progressive increase in intensity, is what allows you to see real muscle growth and strength improvements.

When you perform the same exercises at a lower intensity (i.e., with less weight), you’re not providing your body with enough stimulus to make significant gains in muscular size or strength. The following are three reasons why progressive overload is so important when it comes to weightlifting:

It Allows You To Maximize Muscle Gains

When you gradually add more weight to the barbell or dumbbells, your muscles have to work harder and longer in order for them to continue growing. This increased demand helps stimulate muscle growth and ensures every rep counts.

It Increases Your Chance Of Becoming Stronger

As stated earlier, if you only perform lighter weights on certain exercises, then it’s unlikely that you’ll see much improvement in terms of strength. However, by using a heavier load on some resistance training exercises as well as all other sets and reps throughout your program, you’ll be maximizing neuromuscular adaptation – which essentially means increased neural drive and ability within the muscle tissues themselves – leading towards greater muscular power;

Progressive Overload Helps Determine maximal Strength Levels

Once you’ve hit a plateau – either with a total number of reps completed or maximal effort expended – it’s time for another dose of overload by increasing both weight and resistance.

By doing this while still adhering to appropriate rest intervals between sets (and appropriately targeting each muscle group), you can ensure maximal progressions across all ranges of motion, thus resulting in peak performance!

The beauty of progressive overload is that it can be applied to both bodyweight and weight-training exercises.

For bodyweight exercises, you can progress by adding reps, increasing the difficulty of the exercise, or decreasing the amount of rest you take between sets.

For weight-training exercises, you can progress by increasing the weight you lift, doing more reps, or decreasing the rest you take between sets.

The key to making progressive overload work is to make small, consistent increases over time. If you try to do too much too soon, you’ll either get injured or stall your progress. But if you make small, consistent increases, you’ll be amazed at how quickly your muscles will grow.

The Most Effective way to Train for Strength

While bodyweight exercises are effective for building muscle mass, they are not as effective as weight training. The reason why is that weight training increases the amount of muscle protein synthesis, which results in more muscle growth.

This is due to two factors: weight training causes microtrauma to the muscles due to the added resistance, and the increased volume and frequency of workouts result in higher levels of anabolic hormones such as testosterone and growth hormone.

The Verdict

Which is better for weight loss?

The simple answer is that both methods are effective for weight loss. However, there are some key differences that you should be aware of.

Weight training is more effective for building muscle, which in turn helps to burn more calories. Bodyweight exercises are more effective for burning fat. So, if your goal is to lose weight, you should focus on bodyweight exercises.

However, if you aim to build muscle and lose weight, you should combine both methods. Ultimately, the best approach is to find an exercise program that you enjoy and stick with it!

Which is better for muscle gain?

The goal of weight training is to build muscle. The more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism will be and the more fat you will burn. Bodyweight exercises are a great way to tone muscle but are not as effective for building muscle mass.


The bottom line is that weightlifting and bodyweight exercises have unique benefits. Weightlifting is the way to go if you’re looking to build muscle. However, bodyweight exercises are a better option if you’re trying to lose weight or improve your overall fitness.

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