Best Strength Training Workouts

Best Strength Training Workouts

The best strength training workouts over the centuries.

Strength training is a type of workout which is based on the principle that resistance (such as weights) causes your muscles to contract. These exercises build physical strength, improve endurance, and increase the size of your muscles.

The Best Strength Training Workouts of Ancient Times

Strength training is not exactly a new thing. In fact, it’s been practiced for thousands of years. Excavation of some ancient Egyptian tombs revealed pictures of people lifting bags filled with sand or stone for exercise. Lifting weights became part of modern Olympics because the ancient Greeks themselves had weight lifting contests. Hippocrates declared that using muscles develops them and on the other hand, not using them will cause muscle wasting. Legend has it that the wrestler Milo of Croton used to carry a newborn calf on his back each day until it was fully grown.

All of these early people didn’t have any of the fancy equipment that we have today but they were still compelled to lift heavy objects because for them it was fun, because they wanted to see who was stronger, and they wanted to be fit and healthy.

The Best Strength Training Workouts of the 1700’s

As the centuries rolled on, man’s interest in lifting weights did not waver, and they began to come up with new ways of boosting their strength. Did you know that the dumbbell was first invented back in the 1700’s? They put a rod in between church bells, and removed the clapper that hit the side of the bell. When the clapper was taken out, the bells became dumb, which at the time meant mute or silent. That’s how they came up with the term dumbbell for the contraption.

The Best Strength Training Workouts of the 1800’s

In the 1800’s, people used Indian clubs, which originated from what the ancient Persians called “meels”. By the late 19th century they also developed the barbell, and by the early 20th century the adjustable, plate-loading barbells became more common.

The Best Strength Training Workouts of the 1900’s

Then came the 1930’s and the fame of Charles Atlas. Bodybuilding competitions soon became popular, starting with the contests on the aptly named Muscle Beach in Venice, California. When the Nautilus variable resistance machines became popular in the 1970s, more and more people became interested, as the new machines were less intimidating than the barbells. The 1970s also saw the fitness craze boom with the increased interest in jogging and of course, weight lifting.

Quite a few celebrities were known for their physiques, including such luminaries as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, and a host of professional wrestlers and boxers. Today, the benefits of lifting weights are well known, and every serious professional athlete incorporates some sort of strength training in their workouts.

Even golf, supposedly the most relaxed and composed of sports, demonstrated the need for strength training when Tiger Woods – the most dominant golfer of his era and perhaps of all time – revealed that strength training was an integral component of his preparation.

Some of the best strength training workouts today can be found at with a few good examples being the Dumbbell Exercises at and the Kettlebell Exercises at Both of those are complete strength training workout programs with written and video instructions.