You may be wondering which is better: Dumbbells or barbells? Well, let’s take a look. Barbell exercises are known as compound movements which are used to build muscle mass. Dumbbell movements on the other hand are said to isolate the muscle and are better for etching it, but don’t limit muscle isolation or growth to those options. There are other factors that come into play when using either barbells or dumbbells such as the number of reps or the equipment being used with them. For example, you are more likely to get ripped muscle by doing high reps of barbell exercises than low reps of dumbbell exercises. Whereas standing dumbbell curls add more mass over barbell preacher curls which isolate the bicep much more. Depending on how barbells and dumbbells are used, either can for effectively work as a mass or isolation exercise.
Aside from the mass/isolation debate there may be more limits to barbell training too. Barbells limit your range of motion, are more likely to cause injury, and can develop imbalance to your physique, whereas dumbbell exercises call for more stabilizing muscles to come into play, hence adding more mass to your overall physique.
When it comes down to it, both barbells and dumbbells have their place in every bodybuilders routine. Use both to add variety to your workout to make optimal gains.
About Team 360’s Ted Kelliher
Ted Kelliher is a former MA native who currently resides in Los Angeles, CA. Since his teenage years he became passionately involved in music and bodybuilding. Both of which were positive influences on his move to LA in his mid 20’s. To fit his busy life style, he can only afford to work out 3 days a week during the off season, much less than any competitive body builder would recommend, but he makes it work to his advantage. When it is time to dial in his physique for competition, he does what he can with the little time he has by squeezing in 5 gym sessions a week at most if he is lucky. Constantly tweaking his diet and exercise program to make ends meet, Kelliher does his best to stay on top.