Size Vs. Functionality – What is Your Objective?

Here is a great video showing how training for size and training for power is not the same thing! How you train can have huge impacts on what you’re capable of. It’s apparent the bodybuilder is out of his comfort zone with some of these exercises. It’s because of what’s known as sports-specific training and it’s one of the biggest mistakes people make in the weight room. Elite coaches know if you don’t mimic real-life conditions in the weight room you won’t get the results you’re looking for. Want to be powerful? Train for power. Want to be big? Train for size.


In the video, you’ll see the Bodybuilder Kali Muscle is massive compared to Elliot Hulse, who is big by his own right. You quickly realize that although the Bodybuilder is a big guy the functionality of his strength is limited. Chaulk this up to the way Bodybuilders typically train. Strong men live and die by explosive movements. They train and compete to get massive weights from point A to point B as quickly as possible. This means power is essential.

Power is not something Bodybuilders are typically concerned about. They are figure competitors, body symmetry and size is everything. They focus on increasing the size of their type I and type II muscle fibers through isolation movements like the bicep curl and cable chest flys. These isolation exercises are great for building mass but limit the amount of functionality if you were to emphasize big movements like the squat or the deadlift. Not to mention, Isolating every muscle in the body is extremely time-consuming. So, unless you get paid to workout you’re better off sticking with total-body or upper/lower body split routines focusing on exercises that involve two or more joints. This will help you build functional strength and size efficiently and effectively.

At the end of the day, it just goes to show the size of the muscle is not the best indicator of overall strength and/or power. That’s why incorporating big explosive movements is an excellent way to shake up any stale workout routine and help you achieve your goals

Is your training conducive to achieving your fitness goals? If not what can you do to make it so? Leave a comment below with your thoughts and opinions.

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