Gym jargon for newbies



Training to Failure – Continuing a set until it is impossible to compete another rep without assistance.

Dorsiflexion – Moving the top of the foot upward and toward the shin.

Body composition – The percentage of your body weight composed of fat compared to fat-free mass.

Onion Skin – Slang denoting skin with very low percentage of subcutaneous fat which helps accentuate muscularity.

Easy Set – Exercise not close to maximum effort, as in a warm-up.

Warm-up – The 10-15-minute session of light calisthenics, aerobic exercise, and stretching taken prior to handling heavy bodybuilding training movements. A good warm-up helps to prevent injuries and actually allows you to get more out of your training than if you went into a workout totally cold.

Weight Lifting – The competitive form of weight training in which each athlete attempts to lift as much as he or she can in well – defined exercises. Olympic lifting and power lifting are the two types of weight – lifting competition.

Anabolic Steroid – Synthetic chemical that mimics the muscle-building characteris-tics of the male hormone testosterone.

Easy Set – Exercise not close to maximum effort, as in a warm-up.

Gloves – Many bodybuilders have used gloves to improve their grip in certain exercise, as well as prevent callusing from occurring. Another method is chalk, which, when put on your hands, can also improve grip considerably. If you have sensitive skin, or for any other reason feel you would benefit from the use of gloves, then by all means invest in a pair, which should not run you any more than 10 dollars. If you do develop calluses, this will also toughen up your hands, and make the use of gloves non essential.

Glycogen – The principal stored form of carbohydrate energy (glucose), which is reserved in muscles. When your muscles are full of glycogen, they look and feel full.

Kinesiology – Study of muscles and their movements.

Long Bar – These bars are commonly used in exercises for the back, such as lat pulldowns. The advantage of the long bar is that you can adjust the width depending on how you would like to work the exercises.

Poundage – The amount of weight that you use in an exercise, whether that weight is on a barbell, dumbbell, or exercise machine.

Resistance exercise – Working out with weights or using your body to resist some other force. This includes a wide spectrum of motion, from push-ups to dumbbell curls.

Smooth Muscle – One of two kinds of muscle, composed of elongated spindle – shaped cells in muscles not under voluntary control, such as the smooth muscle of the intestines, stomach, and other visceral organs. The heart muscle is an exception because it is a striated involuntary muscle. Smooth muscle fibers are shorter than striated muscle fibers and are smooth in appearance. Known also as involuntary muscle of unstriated muscle.

Variable Resistance – Strength training equipment where the machine varies amount of weight being lifted to match strength curve for a particular exercise-usually with a cam, lever arm or hydraulic cylinder. Also referred to as “ACCOMMODATING RESISTANCE.”

Vascularity – A prominence of veins and arteries over the muscles and beneath the skin of a well – defined bodybuilder. Vascularity can be enhanced by properly carbing up prior to appearence onstage at a competition.

Weight Training – An umbrella term used to categorize all acts of using resistance training. Weight training can be used to improve the body, to rehabilitate injuries, to improve sports conditioning, or as a competitive activity in terms of bodybuilding and weight lifting.


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