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  1. #1
    Registered User MarkossCZ's Avatar
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    Are lot of variations bad ?

    Hey, i have a question. Is it bad for strenght/hypertrophy if i do lot of variations of exercises ? Lets say i follow fullbody 4x per week program. I should do pull-ups 2x per week. Is it problem if i do everytime different style of pull-ups (like close grip chin-ups one training, wide grip pull-ups second training, neutral grip pull up next week etc.) its more entertaining this way than doing same movements, but i want to know if its more harm, or it does not matter for strenght/hypertrophy. Ty
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  2. #2
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    I think there should be some progression with a particular exercise. If you don't repeat it for a couple of weeks because you've been doing a bunch of different stuff then that won't happen.

    So I think there is a balancing act between the novelty introduced by doing a new exercise and the ability to progress a specific exercise. And I think that variety is less important for novices than experienced lifters.
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  3. #3
    Registered User EiFit91's Avatar
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    I prefer to cycle across variations over a year where I do a given variation for a few months until I switch. It's my preferred solution to the balancing act that Suffolk describes above.

    So for instance last year for 2-3 months I did weighted chinups (variation A), then I moved to L-sit pullups on gymnastic rings (variation B) and did that for 2-3 months, then I did Gironda chins for a while (variation C) and finally I went back to weighted chinups again.

    The real test of progress is then if you can break your previous plateau when you move back from C to A (or B to A if you just do two variations).

    I prefer to time the shift between variations so that I move between variations just when progress on one has slowed down considerably (so it won't be long until I stall).
    The first principle is that you must not fool yourself—and you are the easiest person to fool.

    - Richard Feynman
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  4. #4
    Registered User BeginnerGainz's Avatar
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    In a word, no.

    Provided you aren’t just doing junk volume, or constantly switching up exercises for no real reason.
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    Registered User EliKoehn's Avatar
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    Agree with all above.

    In general, I would add that consistency and discipline are going to be required to make meaningful progress no matter what, and there are going to be times when it's certainly not "entertaining," so while endlessly doing the same exercises for truly long stretches of time can take a psychological toll and some variety can keep motivation fresh (all other potential merits of another exercise selection aside), I'd still shy away from making fun a criterion when you're trying to get over a hurdle.
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    Bands and chains FurtadoZ9's Avatar
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    You don't need to change exercises every week. But if you enjoy it and it keeps you motivated, go for it
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    Registered User pondman's Avatar
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    In a true strength program, you probably only need about 6 lifts. The advantages of variation would be the pros of decreasing repetitive motions, which may help prevent injuries. Once you start looking in the mirror, like everyone, you will see strength and weaknesses. That's when the variations are important. Before you throw yourself into a program with many variations, make sure you honestly access yourself.
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  8. #8
    Registered User jademonkey's Avatar
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    I've always varied my pulls often and I think my back is better for it. You can still track progress. One benefit for me is that the back has so many different muscles and I like to just vary my pulls to be sure of hitting everything. Probably not the way to go if you wanna go pro, but good enough to be the best looking dude at the river on a hot Saturday.

    A few variations is still pretty easy to track and get consistent progress. Say, chin ups, wide pull ups, dumbbell rows, Barbell rows. I include all these plus pull downs, cable rows, Pendlay rows, landmine rows, straight arm pull downs, lateral straight arm pulls, pullovers, front lever pulls, etc.
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  9. #9
    Registered User jenkmen's Avatar
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    As long as the variation aids in your goals and you get enough specificity in then you should be good.
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