Weightlifting uses of small weight plates
Small Weight Plates
Whether you are a regular weightlifter,power lifter, or a bodybuilder continuing to increase weight and challenge your muscles is very important. When a lot of people go to the gym and bench they may try to add weight or try and do more reps on each set than they did last time. You have the three major compound exercises bench,squat, and dead lift. These are the most common exercises in which most people want to increase weight in. Then you have the barbell shoulder press which is still a compound exercise, but you can not go quite as heavy as the others. Everyone wants to try and progressivly get stronger and bigger over a period time. Sometimes doing the same weight and trying to do more reps is fine. Other times it may require adding weight.
Most gyms have a lot weights such as 45s,35s,25s,10s,5s, and 2 1/2. Normally if someone benches 185 for 10 reps next week they may add the 2 1/2 plates which is a total of 5 pounds. Okay so 5 pounds may not sound like a lot right? It may not be a lot, but remember every time you do a rep next time it will be 5 more pounds. Adding 5 pounds each week can sound pretty smart, but there is a better idea if you get stuck on want to progressively increase.
Here's an example of volume:
Someone does 185 10x8x6:
If you multiply that out you get 1850+1480+1110=4440
4440 is the total weight volume you lifted. Sometimes adding 5 pounds is to much of an increase next time. You may attempt 190 next time and do 9x7x6. That is still good, but not quite as productive as possible.
A lot of gyms may not have smaller plates then 2 1/2. If your someone who works out at home it may be a good idea to buy 1 1/4 weight plates. Here is why....
Smaller weight plates
Smaller weight plates allow for a smaller progression on the body. It may be a slower progress, but adding to much weight often hinders progress. Even if your using 2 1/2 weight plates. This is especially true when doing barbell should press. Adding 5 pounds is a HUGE increase each week or workout. If you can get 1 1/4 plates that is a much better increase. You have to remember as long as you add weight you are making progress. Even if its only a few pounds. In the long run you will get bigger and stronger faster. This is as long as your diet is sufficient enough.
There are smaller plates the 1 1/4. 1 1/4 means a 2 1/2 increase total. Whether your doing benching or whatever. If you think about it you ca increase your bench 10 pounds each month. Each week you add 2 1/2 pounds total and you get 10 pounds for a month and 60 pounds for 6 months! Smaller plates can really help you out.
Probably the most hardest exercise to increase eventually is dumbbell bicep curls. If you are using 40 pounds then going up to 45 will not work. You may want to invest in 3/4 weight plates. This is much for suitable for exercises using smaller muscles. I have recently gotten 1 1/4 and am going to look for smaller ones for bicep increases
If your gym does not have these weight plates perhaps you could consult them about getting them. It depends on what gym you are out. If it's a very high class gym they may have them. If you work out at home then getting them off the internet is the best bet. Not all stores have the very small ones except ones that specialize in it. Small plates are out there just not as common. I really think they should be more common cause a lot of people think there wimp weights, but when you are using BIG WEIGHTS and use this as a supplement for muscle growth it is VERY USEFUL!!!
Now I am not saying 5 pound increases are a bad choice, but maybe not the most productive especially on smaller exercises like bicep curls and barbell press. With smaller plates you have it more down to an exact science. Your body thinks your doing the same amount, but you slip a paper weight in there each workout and you grow! Its kind of like tricking the body. The body likes to adapt its just sometimes the slightly bigger increases is to much when it comes to total volume.
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