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  1. #1
    Registered User tadpole25's Avatar
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    Narrowing down to 2 exercises in each muscle groups?

    I've heard from several people that quality matters more than quantity. And that many successful bodybuilders do ~2 exercises in each muscle group instead of ~4-5. (i.e. 2 shoulders, 2 chest, 2 triceps, on push days).

    Which should I narrow it down to.

    For example: shoulders, I'll keep the Arnold Press. Which 2nd exercise would go good with it?

    Is there a list of 2 exercises for each group that targets all parts of that muscle group?
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  2. #2
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    There are many ways to do the same thing. I am always sceptical of anyone who says this way is better than that - when there are plenty of people achieving results with completely different setups.

    Having said that, if you want try a rotation with 2 exercises per muscle group because that's what you prefer then do it

    Chest: slight incline DB bench press, cable flies (wide cable spacing, step forwards and back to change the force angle during sets)
    Shoulders: DB overhead press and cable laterals
    Back: Barbell row and lat prayer
    Rear delts and traps: reverse fly machine and overhead barbell shrugs
    Arms: cable curls (again, change the angle during the set by stepping forward and back). Cable overhead extension.
    Quads: Back squat, sissy squat
    Posterior chain: RDL, barbell hip thrusters (can be done on smith machine)
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  3. #3
    Time is Muscle ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by tadpole25 View Post
    I've heard from several people that quality matters more than quantity. And that many successful bodybuilders do ~2 exercises in each muscle group instead of ~4-5. (i.e. 2 shoulders, 2 chest, 2 triceps, on push days).

    Which should I narrow it down to.

    For example: shoulders, I'll keep the Arnold Press. Which 2nd exercise would go good with it?

    Is there a list of 2 exercises for each group that targets all parts of that muscle group?
    It's a useful question, though you'll get many (some conflicting) answers rather than one clear list. Here's what I'd personally do, for awhile, not forever:

    Quads: squat, walking lunges
    Hams: deadlift from the floor, straight leg deadlift, leg curl
    Chest: barbell bench press, incline dumbbell press
    Back: row, pullup/chinup
    Core: Turkish get up, core rotation
    Shoulders: overhead press, lateral raise
    Biceps: curl
    Triceps: cable overhead tricep extension
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  4. #4
    Registered User air2fakie's Avatar
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    There doesn't have to be the same # of exercises for each "muscle group" in a program, and specific volume for each will be just as important. I'd switch exercises every so often regardless which ones you choose for now.
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  5. #5
    Registered User BeginnerGainz's Avatar
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    So if I had to pick 2 exercises for the rest of my life per muscle group…

    Quads: leg press, leg extensions (kinda of a no brained there)
    Hamstrings: seated leg curls, back extensions
    Back: Neutral grip chest supported rows (for lats) and Meadows rows (everything else)
    Chest: converging chest press and incline DB
    Shoulders: cable laterals and cable rear delt rows
    Forearm flexors (not just biceps): DB curls and cable rope hammer curls
    Triceps: staggered bar pressdowns and seated French press

    Edit: I also think the Arnold press is crap for shoulders. Others may disagree.
    Last edited by BeginnerGainz; 12-08-2021 at 10:41 AM.
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  6. #6
    Iron Snowflake W8isGR8's Avatar
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    I think it depends on the muscle. I view shoulders as three separate muscles for example. Some muscles only have fibers that pull in one direction, so they don't need as much variety as a muscle like chest or lats that pull in multiple directions
    I don't know either lol
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  7. #7
    Han shot first! TolerantLactose's Avatar
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    A novice switching direction mid-program. That's new and unusual.
    Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?
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  8. #8
    Unregistered User MyEgoProblem's Avatar
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    I treat stuff as movements patterns first THEN groups.. So, I'm gonna c-c-c-combreaker that

    Knee bend...
    Paused Safety bar squat

    Hip Hinge...
    Snatch grip Stiff leg deadlift (from floor)

    Upper push...
    Low incline Cambered football bar bench press

    Upper pull..
    Girinda chin up

    Quads.
    Hack squat & leg extension

    Hams.
    Ghr & seated leg curl

    Glutes.
    Hip thrust & bad girls

    Chest.
    Dumbell bench & cable crossover

    Shoulders.
    Front/side/rear raises

    Triceps
    Rolling db ext & pressdowns

    Biceps
    Incline db curl & rope hammer curl

    Lats
    Straight arm pullover and cable row

    Upper back
    Incline db shrug & facepulls

    Low back
    Reverse hyper & seated gm

    Core
    Rolling plank & leg raises

    Bonus
    Nautilus pullover machine & adding bands to stuff

    No this list is far from exhaustive, i just got bored going thru muscle groups.. And just 2 it's abysmal in the grand scheme of it all.
    And yes.. This gets ridiculous when you try to actually break this stuff down and this is when the art of coaching comes in... And programming and rotation of lifts and protocols.

    Tldr.
    Run something written by someone who gets it.



    Originally Posted by TolerantLactose View Post
    A novice switching direction mid-program. That's new and unusual.
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  9. #9
    Registered User mdonnelly80's Avatar
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    Quads: Squats, leg press
    Hamstrings: RDLs, banded hamstring curls
    Chest: Incline BB and incline DB presses
    Anterior/medial delts: OHP, DB presses
    Posterior delts: DB flies, band pull aparts
    Upper Back: BB rows, chin-ups
    Lower back: RDLs (again), weighted back extensions
    Triceps: dips (when I could so them), press downs
    Biceps: Curls are curls (IMO)
    Calves: Whatever is available (I'd rather watch paint dry than train calves)
    "The Iron never lies to you. You can walk outside and listen to all kinds of talk, get told that you’re a god or a total bastard. The Iron will always kick you the real deal. The Iron is the great reference point, the all-knowing perspective giver. Always there like a beacon in the pitch black. I have found the Iron to be my greatest friend. It never freaks out on me, never runs. Friends may come and go. But two hundred pounds is always two hundred pounds." -Henry Rollins
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  10. #10
    Registered User jaxqen's Avatar
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    right now

    calves - calf raises on leg press machine & one leg db calf raise
    hamstrings - romanian deadlifts & machine knee flexion
    quads - squat & leg press
    glutes - squat & lunge
    lower back - conv deadlift & GHD extension
    lats - swiss bar seal row & cable row
    abs - plate russian twist & weighted decline crunches
    chest - db low incline bench press & machine hammer strength
    traps - conventional deadlift & farmer walks
    delts - db egyptian lateral raise & machine reverse fly
    biceps - bb curl & db hammer curl
    triceps - db skullcrusher & cable pushdown
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  11. #11
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    2 exercises only? Nope, no way
    2 movements per body part per week....ok, I see that. But why would you pigeon-hole yourself to just two exercises per bp when there are so many good exercises out there?

    I don't do the same workout back to back ever. In fact, I dare say that it's around 6-8 weeks before I come around to landing on the same exact session I did before. I can think of at least 6-10 proven, good exercises per muscle group. Why limit yourself?

    Take all the good info above, do some more homework and add to this list, plot this info on a list by bodypart. Then pick 2 for the bp you're hitting this week, 2 different ones the next and so on...
    Each different exercise hits a muscle in a slightly different way and it's this small difference that I believe makes a huge difference years down the road....versatility

    Just my thoughts....whatevs
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    Registered User jaxqen's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    I can think of at least 6-10 proven, good exercises per muscle group.
    Even hamstrings?
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    Unregistered User MyEgoProblem's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jaxqen View Post
    Even hamstrings?
    Easily
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  14. #14
    Registered User GeneralSerpant's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jaxqen View Post
    Even hamstrings?
    Start with deadlifts...
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    OCB Pro smokinal's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jaxqen View Post
    Even hamstrings?
    Ok, ya got me there!
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    Originally Posted by GeneralSerpant View Post
    Start with deadlifts...
    they work, but aren't a limiting factor, unlike grip & erectors.


    rdl
    sldl
    lying leg curl
    seated leg curl
    ghd
    nordic curl
    db leg curl
    band leg curl

    so I answered my own question
    but yeah, I limit myself to 2 - usually rdl and a lying leg curl
    easier to track progress
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    Registered User pinfante's Avatar
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    2 per muscle group goes well with German Volume Training
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  18. #18
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    Originally Posted by tadpole25 View Post
    I've heard from several people that quality matters more than quantity. And that many successful bodybuilders do ~2 exercises in each muscle group instead of ~4-5. (i.e. 2 shoulders, 2 chest, 2 triceps, on push days).

    Which should I narrow it down to.

    For example: shoulders, I'll keep the Arnold Press. Which 2nd exercise would go good with it?

    Is there a list of 2 exercises for each group that targets all parts of that muscle group?

    These would be my choices and often are:

    Day one

    Bench
    Incline
    Row
    Lat pull
    Shoulder press
    Upright row

    Rest day


    Day two
    Squats
    Front squats
    Leg ext (yeah, that’s three)
    Leg curls
    Calf raises

    Barbell curls
    Db curls
    Pushdowns
    Skull crushers


    Rest day
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  19. #19
    Registered User BeginnerGainz's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jaxqen View Post
    they work, but aren't a limiting factor, unlike grip & erectors.


    rdl
    sldl
    lying leg curl
    seated leg curl
    ghd
    nordic curl
    db leg curl
    band leg curl

    so I answered my own question
    but yeah, I limit myself to 2 - usually rdl and a lying leg curl
    easier to track progress
    Same. Seated leg curls and back extensions for hankies, leg press and extensions for quads.
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  20. #20
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    TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000) TheShadowMan is a splendid one to behold. (+10000)
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    I actually like using 2 exercises a muscle, lets me focus on the volume more. This isn't my split, but just the exercises I like for each area:

    Neck: plate flexions/extensions
    Traps: rear upright rows/rear delt fly
    Delts: clean & press/lateral raise
    Back: wide pullups/bent rows
    Chest: incline press/decline fly
    Biceps: barbell drag curls/incline curls
    Triceps: close grip bench/2 dumbbell overhead extensions
    Forearms: reverse barbell curl/incline reverse curl
    Abs: ab rollout/bicycle crunch
    Glutes: hip thrust/glute kickback
    Quads: barbell hack squat/sissy squat
    Hams: romanian deadlift/nordic curl
    Tibias: farmer's walk on heels/seated toeraises
    Calves: farmer's walk on toes/seated calfraise
    Back to basics full body routine: https://pastebin.com/5BgKgrMv

    Training journal: https://igoodies.000webhostapp.com/?viagra=showthread.php?t=178059671&p=1598034261#post1598034261
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