Beginners Guide To Muscle Anatomy for Strength Training

Beginners Guide To Muscle Anatomy for Strength Training

muscles, bones, and how they come into play with your strength training

Ever hear your training instructor say,“Today let’s work the quadriceps, lats, and pecs?” And you think: I have no idea what they are even talking about!

Often exercises are named according to the body part worked, but sometimes they are ambiguous leading you to wonder as to what muscle group you are working. Learning basic anatomy for strength training can enhance your results because you will know what and where you are working and identify correctly when you may be compensating. Visualization has been shown to increase physical gains, so if you can picture the muscles you are working, you may enhance your results.

When learning anatomy, muscles can be grouped by what the muscle looks like at the physiological level, location of muscle, and how the muscle functions. The chart below is a generalized look at the muscles of strength training based on their location in the body. The chart provides a broad view as to where the muscles are located (originate and insert), their function, common Total Gym exercises to strengthen these muscles, and tips to prevent you from compromising your form.

Upper Body

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Lower Body

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Elizabeth Leeds, DPT

Elizabeth Leeds, owner of Seaside Fitness and Wellness, combines her background in physical therapy, personal training, and Pilates in her practice and teaching. As a pelvic floor physical therapist working at Comprehensive Therapy Services in San Diego, her passion for pregnancy and postpartum is seen in her mission to empower women with knowledge and understanding of their physical changes, and how to address them to prevent future issues. Additionally, Elizabeth is a Master Trainer and developer for Total Gym’s GRAVITY education.

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