It’s not a surprise that normally, not in all cases, guys have more upper body strength than girls. Being a girl myself and belonging to the majority who prove the previous sentence to be true, I thought it was something to simply accept.
I didn’t feel like lifting heavy things anyway, so I put that on the to-do-later list for almost 4 years. And of course, I’ve met plenty of men who have very little upper body strength.
The first thing I learned about my journey of progress in training and physical health, it’s that if you want to do something, you have to know how to prepare the muscles that you are going to use to meet your goal. In other words, make sure you’re body can handle that pressure. It won’t happen on it’s own unless you train for it.
All you need to do to get a stronger upper body is dedicate 20 minutes of your day to your body. Be sure to warm up properly to the get your blood pumping through and to wake up your body for some action. You’re going to do 4 exercises in 3 rounds; it starts with 45 seconds of repetition and a 15-second rest. Afterwards, stretch enough so that your muscles know that they can chill out and so they won’t feel extremely sore the next day.
Whether you’re male or female looking for some strength in your arms and chest, here are 4 upper body workouts you should definitely do:
By now, the majority recognize this static exercise but if you’re still wondering, a plank is the position you are in right before bending your elbows to do a push-up. You’re on the palm of your hands or elbows and forearms and the tip of our toes with your chest facing the floor. Your back should be straight and you should squeeze your abs so that you can be as straight as a plank!
To avoid any injuries, don’t let your hips sink down but instead hold it up using your core muscles and make sure you begin with short amounts of repetitions. The longer you hold it, the more advanced you are but always progress in small baby steps knowing that you ALWAYS have the correct form.
If you’re a beginner, start by holding the plank for about 20-30 seconds and rest. Than finish what’s left of the 45 seconds and continue to the next exercise
Assisted triceps dips/ Regular triceps dips
For this exercise, you’ll need a chair, bench or anything that’s pretty much as tall as your knees are. On the edge of the chair, put your palms on it and stretch your legs in front of you but bend your knees on a 90 degree angle. Now act as if you were slowly going to lower your bottom to the floor to sit, except you’re only going to lower yourself until your arms from a 90 degree angle. Then you get back up by straightening your arms and repeat. Do as many repetitions as you can within the 45 seconds.
If you’re advanced, then forget your feet and jump on the parallel bars. Make sure your torso is straight and your arms are sturdy to control the movement and you go down. Do not flare your elbows out, focus on keeping your body vertical and remember that it’s all about slow and controlled movements to avoid injuries.
I’m pretty sure every gym teacher has taught this to their students as a warm-up but it’s actually harder and great to help squeeze those muscles. So, open up your arms and raise them not higher than your shoulders so that it seems like a straight line. Then make circles 22 seconds forwards and then 22 seconds backwards. It may seem simple and easy, but trust me, the burn will slowly build up.
Here we have another exercise that may not seem like much but it’s harder than it seems. But don’t be fooled, it will work out your back and arms and force you to sweat. You can do them on a suspension strap, a bar, ropes and rings.
To start, it’s similar to the plank but rather than having your hands on the floor, your hands are wrapped around a bar, (or whichever of the instruments you use that were just mentioned). Your body must look straight, meaning your hips must be aligned with your back without sinking or lifting your pelvis too high. So when you do a rep, your back and chest muscles are going to be doing all the work and your helps remained still and aligned; pull yourself towards the bar until your chest is about 12 cm away from the bar. The more you lay back with your feet farther from the bar, the more intensity you add to this exercise.
In essence, upper body workouts are a necessity, whether you’re an athlete or not. Simple tasks such as carrying your groceries into the house, standing straight during a speech, or helping a family member with home improvement become easier and more enjoyable because you have the strength to do it.
Also, it’s good to always remember the importance of practicing good body posture to prevent any injuries and look like a boss when performing the exercises.
Practice this routine at least twice a week and let us know in the comments below if you rocked the training or if the training rocked you!