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Bodybuilding Glossary - A-Z Terminology

Bodybuilding Glossary - A-Z Terminology - GAT SPORT

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 



Abduction - Movement of a limb away from middle of body, such as bringing arm to shoulder height from hanging-down position.

Abs - Abbreviation for abdominal muscles.

 Abyss - A barrier which stands between knowing what needs to be done and actually doing it

Accommodating Resistance - Increasing resistance as the lifter's force increases through range of motion. Nautilus machines are said to provide accommodating resistance.

Adduction - Movement of a limb toward middle of body, such as bringing arm to side from extended position at shoulder.

Adhesion - Fibrous patch holding muscles or other parts together that are normally separated.

 Aerobic Exercise - Prolonged, moderate-intensity work that uses up oxygen at or below the level at which your cardiorespiratory (heart-lung) system can replenish oxy-gen in the working muscles. Aerobic literally means with oxygen, and it is the only type of exercise which burns body fat to meet its energy needs. Bodybuilders engage in aerobic workouts to develop additional cardiorespiratory fitness, as well as to burn off excess body fat to achieve peak contest muscularity. Common aerobic activities include running, cycling, swimming, dancing, and walking. Depending on how vigorously you play them, most racquet sports can also be aerobic exercise.

AFWB - American Federation of Women Bodybuilders - group that administers women's amateur bodybuilding in America.

Agonist - Muscle directly engaged in contraction, which is primarily responsible for the movement of a body part.

All-or-None - Muscle fiber contracts fully or it does not contract at all.

Amino acids - A group of compounds that serve as the building blocks from which protein and muscle are made.

Anabolic Drugs - Also called anabolic steroids, these are artificial male hormones that aid in nitrogen retention and thereby add to a male bodybuilder's muscle mass and strength. These drugs are not without hazardous side effects, however, and they are legally available only through a physician's prescription.

 Anabolic Steroid - Synthetic chemical that mimics the muscle-building characteristics of the male hormone testosterone.

 Anaerobic Exercise - Exercise of much higher intensity than aerobic work, which uses up oxygen more quickly than the body can replenish it in the working muscles. Anaerobic exercise eventually builds up a significant oxygen debt that forces an athlete to terminate the exercise session rather quickly. Anaerobic exercise (the kind of exercise to which bodybuilding training belongs) burns up glycogen (muscle sugar) to supply its energy needs. Fast sprinting is a typical anaerobic form of exercise.

Androgenic Drugs - Androgenics are drugs that simulate the effects of the male hormone testosterone in the human body. Androgens do build a degree of strength and muscle mass, but they also stimulate secondary sex characteristics such as increased body hair, a deepened voice, and high levels of aggression. Indeed, many bodybuilders and power-lifters take androgens to stimulate aggressiveness in the gym, resulting in more productive workouts

Antagonist - Muscle that counteracts the agonist, lengthening when agonist muscle contracts.

APC - American Physique Committee, Inc. Group that administers men's amateur bodybuilding in America.

Antioxidant - Small compounds that minimize tissue oxidation and help control free radicals and their negative effects.

Arm Blaster - Aluminum strip about 5x24 inches, supported at waist height by a strap around neck. Keeps elbows from moving while curling barbell or doing triceps pushdowns.

Atrophy - Decrease in size and functional ability of tissue or organs. Atrophy is basically "muscle loss" through incorrect nutrition and overtraining.


Baby's Butt - Indentation between the two heads of biceps muscles of very muscular man.

Barbell - Weight used for exercise, consisting of a rigid handle 5-7' long, with detachable metal discs at each end.

Back-Cycling - Dropping back the amount of weight used, number of reps or number of sets in your workout.

 Balance - A term referring to an even relationship of body proportions in a man's physique. Perfectly balanced physical proportions are a much-sought-after trait among competitive bodybuilders.

Basic Exercise - A bodybuilding exercise which stresses the largest muscle groups of your body (e.g., the thighs, back, and/or chest), often in combination with smaller muscles. You will be able to use very heavy weights in basic exercises in order to build great muscle mass and physical power. Typical basic movements include squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. (You should also see the listing for Isolation Exercise.)

 Bar - The steel shaft that forms the basic part of a barbell, dumbbell or cable attachment. These bars are normally about one inch thick, and they are often encased in a revolving standard size metal sleeve that holds the weight.

Barbell - Weight used for exercises, consisting of a rigid handle with detachable (or fixed) metal discs at each end.

Basic Exercise - A muscle building exercise which targets the largest muscle groups of your body (upper legs, back, and/or chest) and often smaller muscles in the same movement. Basic exercises are the best for building muscle mass. Typical basic movements include squats, bench presses, rows and deadlifts.

Bench - A fixed or adjustable padded bench that you can use for doing various exercises like dumbbell bench press, shoulder press and arm exercises. Some benches are flat and adjustable in height, other can incline to 10-90 degrees.

Benches - A wide variety of exercise benches is available for use in doing barbell and dumbbell exercise either lying or seated on a bench. The most common type of bench, a flat exercise bench, can be used for chest, shoulder, and arm movements. Incline and decline benches (which are angled at about 30-45 degrees) also allow movements for the chest, shoulders, and arms.

 Biomechanics - The science concerned with the internal and external forces acting on a human body and the effects produced by these forces.

Body Composition - The percentage of your body weight composed of fat compared to fat-free mass.

Buff - Being muscular to the highest level.

Buffed - As in a "finely buffed finish" - good muscle size and definition, looking good.

 Bulking Up - Gaining bodyweight by growing muscle, body fat or both muscle and fat.

Burn or "The Burn" - A beneficial burning sensation in a muscle that you are training. This burn is caused by a rapid buildup of fatigue toxins in the muscle and is a good indication that you are optimally working a muscle group. The best bodybuilders consistently forge past the pain barrier erected by muscle burn and consequently build very massive, highly defined muscles.

Burns - A training technique used to push a set past the normal failure point, and thereby to stimulate it to greater hypertrophy. Burns consist of short, quick, bouncy reps 4-6 inches in range of motion. Most bodybuilders do 8-12 burns at the end of a set that has already been taken to failure. They generate terrific burn in the muscles, hence the name of this technique.


Calisthenics - Simple exercises performed without equipment, using only the body for resistance, like jumping jacks, lunges, push-ups, dips.

CAFB - The Canadian Amateur Federation of Bodybuilders, the sports federation responsible in Canada for ad-ministering amateur bodybuilding for men, women, and mixed pairs. The CAFB is one of the more than 120 national bodybuilding federations affiliated internationally with the IFBB.

 Calories - The unit for measuring energy value. This can be the amount of energy you burn or the amount of energy contained in foods.

Carbohydrates - Organic compounds containing carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. They're a very effective fuel source for the body. There are 2 main types of carbs. Simple carbs are found in sugars and complex carbs are found in wheat, rice, bread, potatoes etc. You need to each complex carbs for long lasting energy.

Chalk - The powder used on hands for a secure grip.

Cheating (cheat reps) - A method of pushing a muscle to keep working far past the point at which it would normally fail to continue contracting due to excessive fatigue buildup. In cheating you will use a self-administered body swing, jerk, or otherwise poor exercise form once you have reached the failure point to take some of the pressure off the muscles and allow them to continue a set for two or three repetitions past failure.

Chin-up Bar - A bar attached high on the wall or gym ceiling, on which you can do chins, pull ups, hanging leg raises, and other movements for your upper body.

Cholesterol - A type of fat that, although most widely known as a "bad fat" implicated in promoting heart disease and stroke, is a vital component in the production of many hormones in the body.

Circuit Training - Going quickly from one exercise apparatus to another and doing a prescribed number of exercises on each apparatus, to keep pulse rate high and promote overall fitness.

Collar - The clamp that is used to hold plates securely in place on a barbell or dumbbell bar. The cylindrical metal clamps are held in place on the bar by means of a set screw threaded through the collar and tightened securely against the bar. Inside collars keep plates from sliding inward and injuring your hands, while outside collars keep plates from sliding off the barbell in the middle of an exercise.

Compound Exercise - An exercise that requires you to move at two joints or more. Examples of compound exercises are squat, bench press, pull up and dip.

Compound Training - Sometimes called "giant sets", doing 34 exercises for same muscle, one after other, with minimal rest in between.

Concentric - The lifting phase of an exercise, when the muscle shortens or contracts. For example in a bicep curl when you pull the weight up you're in the "positive" or concentric part of the movement.

Clean - The movement of raising a barbell or two dumb-bells from the floor to your shoulders in one smooth motion to prepare for an overhead lift. To properly exe-cute a clean movement, you must use the coordinated strength of your legs, back, shoulders, and arms.

Clean diet - This refers to eating nutrient-rich, low-fat meals.

Clean and Jerk - Olympic lift where weight is raised from floor to overhead in 2 movements (see also SNATCH).

Collar - The clamp that is used to hold plates securely in place on a barbell or dumbbell bar. The cylindrical metal clamps are held in place on the bar by means of a set screw threaded through the collar and tightened securely against the bar. Inside collars keep plates from sliding inward and injuring your hands, while outside collars keep plates from sliding off the barbell in the middk of an exercise.

Compound Training - Sometimes called "giant sets"; doing 34 exercises for same muscle, one after other, with minimal rest in between.

 Concentric - The lifting phase of an exercise, when the muscle shortens or contracts. For example, When you lift the weight in a bench press, press-ing it from your chest to the lock-out position, that's the concentric, or "positive," phase of the exercise.

 Couples' Competition - A relatively new form of body-building competition in which man-woman teams com-pete against others with particularly appealing posing routines featuring adagio and other dance movements and lifts. More frequently called "Mixed Pairs Competition," this event is rapidly gaining international popularity with the bodybuilding community and general public, and is held in both amateur and professional World Championships.

Clean and Snatch - One of 2 Olympic lifts where weight is raised from floor to overhead at arms' length in one motion.

Crunches - An exercise for the abdominal muscles. The exercise is done on the floor with legs on bench, hands behind neck. Also known as sit-ups.

Curl Bar - Cambered bar designed for more comfortable grip and less forearm strain.

Cut Up (or Cut) - A term used to denote a bodybuilder who has an extremely high degree of muscular definition due to a low degree of body fat.

Cycle - Refers to deliberate variation in the intensity and volume of workouts, or to variation of dosages of steroids or other growth-enhancing drugs.


Dead Lift - A muscle building exercise and one of three powerlifting events (other two are squat and bench press). Weight is lifted off floor to approximately waist height. Lifter must stand erect, shoulders back.

Deficiency - A less than optimum level of nutrients for your bodys requirements. Most commonly seen in vitamins. Your body may become deficient when you are training hard and not eating a healthy diet.

Definition - The absence of fat over clearly delineated muscular movement. Definition is often referred to as "muscularity," and a highly defined bodybuilder has so little body fat that very fine grooves of muscularity called "striations" will be clearly visible over each major muscle group.

Delts - Abbreviation for Deltiods. Deltoids are the shoulder muscles. The body has front, middle and rear deltiods.

Density - Muscle hardness, which is also related to muscular definition. A bodybuilder can be well-defined and still have excess fat within each major muscle complex. But when he has muscle density, even this intramuscular fat has been eliminated. A combination of muscle mass and muscle density is highly prized among all competitive bodybuilders.

Diet - Food and drink regularly consumed by a person, often according to specific guidelines to improve physical condition.

 Dip Belt - A large heavy belt that a lifter can wear around the waist and attach additional weights to increase the intensity of the dip exercise.

Dipping Bars - Parallel bars set high enough above the floor to allow you to do dips between them, leg raises for your abdominals, and a variety of other exercises.

Diuretics - Sometimes called "water pills," these are drugs and herbal preparations that remove excess water from a bodybuilder's system just prior to a show, thereby revealing greater muscular detail. Harsh chemical diuretics can be quite harmful to your health, particularly if they are used on a chronic basis. Two of the side effects of excessive chemical diuretic use are muscle cramps and heart arrhythmias (irregular heart beats).

 Double (Split Training) Routine - Working out twice a day to allow for shorter, more intense workouts. Usually performed by advanced bodybuilders preparing for contests.

 Drop Set - An advanced training technique where the trainee completes one set, immediately followed by another set with slightly lighter weights and the followed by a third set with llighter weights again. Drop sets are often used with dumbbells or machines. Barbell drop sets are often referred to as "stripping" because you take the plates off the bar instead of using lighter dumbbells. It's important that you have no rest between sets, not even 5 seconds!

Drying Out - Encouraging loss of body fluids by limiting liquid intake, eliminating salt, sweating heavily and/or using diuretics.

 Dumbbell - Weight used for exercising consisting of rigid handle about 14" long with sometimes detachable metal discs at each end.



Easy Set - A set performed without using maximum effort. Like a warm up set.

Eccentric - The lowering phase of an exercise, when the muscle lengthens. For example, lowering the weight to your chest during the bench press is the eccentric, or "negative" part of the exercise.

Endurance - Ability of a muscle to produce force continually over a period of time. The greater your endurance the longer you can perform the exercise.

Energy - Measure in Calories or KJ energy is the capacity to do work. Energy harnessed is power.

Essential fatty acids (EFAs) - Fats our bodies can't make, so we must obtain them through our diets. These fats (which include linoleic and linolenic acid) are very important to hormone production, as well as cellular synthesis and integrity. Good sources of these fats arc flaxseed oil and safflower oil.

Estrogen - Female sex hormone.

Exercise - An exercise is each individual movement. For example, leg press and squat are both different exercises.

Extension - Extending a body part from a bent position to a straight position. For example, tricep extension (bending at the elbow) and leg extension (bending at the knee).



Failure - That point in an exercise at which you have so fully fatigued your working muscles that they can no longer complete an additional repetition of a movement with strict biomechanics. You should always take your post-warm-up sets at least to the point of momentary muscular failure, and frequently past that point.

Fascia - Fibrous connective tissue that covers, supports and separates ~l muscles and muscle groups. It also unites skin with underlying tissue.

 Fast Twitch Muscles - Refers to muscle cells that fire quickly and are utilized in anaerobic activities like sprinting and powerlifting.

Fat - One of the macronutrients. Fat contains nine calories per gram; it has the most calories of MI the macronutrients. There are two types of fat-saturated "bad" fat and unsaturated "good" fat.

Fat Free Mass (FFM) - Any part of the human body that does not contain any fat. For example, bones, hair, muscles skin etc.

Flex - Bend or decrease angle of a joint; contract a muscle.

Flexibility - A suppleness of joints, muscle masses, and connective tissues which lets you move your limbs over an exaggerated range of motion, a valuable quality in body-building training, since it promotes optimum physical development. Flexibility can only be attained through systematic stretching training.

Flexion - Bending in contrast to extending, as in leg flexions.

Flush - Cleanse a muscle by increasing the blood supply to it, removing toxins left in muscle by exertion.

Forced Reps - Forced reps are a frequently used method of extending a set past the point of failure to induce greater gains in muscle mass and quality. With forced reps, a training partner pulls upward on the bar just enough for you to grind out two or three reps past the failure threshold.

Form - This is simply another word to indicate the mechanics used during the performance of any muscle building or weight training movement. Perfect form involves moving only the specific muscles in an exercise description.

Free Style Training - Training all body parts in one workout.

 Free Weights - Barbells, dumbbells, and related equipment. Serious bodybuilders use a combination of free weights and such exercise machines as those manufactured by Nautilus and Universal Gyms, but they primarily use free weights in their workouts.

Frequent Feeding - Eating often throughout the day to work with your body, not against it. fly eating at regular intervals throughout the day (approximately every two to three hours), you can keep your metabolism elevated and energy levels stable.

Fructose - The main type of sugar found in fruit. It's sweeter than sucrose (table sugar).



Giant Sets - Series of 4-6 exercises done with little or no rest between movements and a rest interval of 3-4 minutes between giant sets. You can perform giant sets for either two antagonistic muscle groups or a single body part.

Glucose - The simplest sugar molecule. It's also the main sugar found in blood and is used as a basic fuel for the body.

Glycogen - The principal stored form of carbohydrate energy (glucose), which is reserved in muscles. When your muscles are full of glycogen, they look and feel full.

Gorging - This refers to eating large amounts of food at one meal, then waiting for many hours, maybe a full day, before eating again.

Grazing - This term refers to frequent feedings - eating small amounts of food often.



Hand Off - Assistance in getting a weight to starting position for an exercise.

 Hard Set - Perform a prescribed number of repetitions of an exercise using maximum effort.

HDL - This stands for "high-density lipoprotein." It's one of the subcate-gories of cholesterol--typically thought of as the "good" cholesterol. You may be able to raise your HDL cholesterol levels by ingesting qual-ity unsaturated fats like flaxseed oil. Exercise has ~so been shown to increase HDL levels.

 Hypertrophy - The scientific term denoting an increase in muscle mass and an improvement in relative muscular strength. Hypertrophy is induced by placing an "overload" on the working muscles with various training techniques during a muscle building workout.



IFBB - International Federation of Bodybuilders, founded in 1946 - group that over-sees worldwide men's and women's amateur and professional bodybuilding.

Intensity - The relative degree of effort that you put into each set of every exercise in a bodybuilding workout. The more intensity you place on a working muscle, the more quickly it will increase in hypertrophy. The most basic methods of increasing intensity are to use heavier weights in good form in each exercise, do more reps with a set weight, or perform a consistent number of sets and reps with a particular weight in a movement, but progressively reducing the length of rest intervals between sets.

Isokinetic Exercise - Isotonic exercise in which there is ACCOMMODATING RESISTANCE. Also refers to constant speed. Nautilus and Cybex are two types of isokinetic machines, where machine varies amount of resistance being lifted to match force curve developed by the muscle.

Exercise - Muscular contraction where muscle maintains a constant length and joints do not move. These exercises are usually performed against a wall or other immovable object.

 Isolation Exercise - In contrast to a basic exercise, an isolation movement stresses a single muscle group (or sometimes just part of a single muscle) in relative isolation from the remainder of the body. In all isolation exercises only 1 joint movement is required. Examples are bicep curl, leg extension and tricep extension.

Isometric Exercise - Muscular contraction where muscle maintains a constant length and joints do not move. These exercises are usually performed against a wall or other immovable object.

Isotonic Exercise - Muscular action in which there is a change in length of muscle and weight) keeping tension constant. Lifting free weights is a classic isotonic exercise.



Judging Rounds - In the universally accepted and applied IFBB system of judging, bodybuilders are evaluated in three distinctly different rounds of judging, plus a final pose down round for only the top five competitors after the first three rounds have been adjudicated. In Round One, the competitors are viewed in groups and individually in seven well-defined compulsory poses; in Round Two, they are viewed semi-relaxed from the front, both sides, and back; and in Round Three, they perform their own uniquely personal free-posing routines to their own choice of music. Overall, this use of three rounds of judging and a pose down round results in a very fair choice of the final winners of a bodybuilding champion-ship.

 Juice - A slang term for anabolic steroids, e.g., being "on the juice."



Kinesiology - Study of muscles and their movements.

 Knee Wraps - Elastic strips about 3-5 inches wide used to wrap knees for better support when performing squats, dead lifts, etc.



Lats - Abbreviation for latissimus dorsi, the large muscles of the back that move the arms downward, backward and in internal rotation.

Law Of Nature - Use it or lose it.

Layoff - Most intelligent bodybuilders take a one or two week layoff from bodybuilding training from time to time, during which they totally avoid the gym.

LDL - This stands for "low-density lipoprotein" and is a subcategory of cholesterol, typically thought of as the "bad" cholesterol. Levels of LDL cholesterol can be elevated by ingestion of saturated fats and a lack of exercise.

Lean Body Mass - Everything in the body except fat, including bone, organs, skin, nails and all body tissue including muscle. Approximately 50-60% of lean body mass is water.

Lift Off - Assistance in getting weight to proper starting position.

Ligament - Strong, fibrous band of connecting tissue connecting 2 or more bones or cartilages or supporting a muscle, fascia or organ.

Linoleic Acid - An essential fatty acid and, more specifically, an omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid. Good sources of this fatty acid are safflower oil and soybean oil.

Linolenic Acid - An essential fatty acid and, more precise an omega-3 poly-unsaturated fatty acid. It is found in high concentrations in flaxseed oil.

Lock Out - Partial repetition of an exercise by pushing the weight through only last few inches of movement.

Lower Abs - Abbreviation for abdominal muscles below the navel.



Mass - The relative size of each muscle group, or of the entire physique. As long as you also have a high degree of muscularity and good balance of physical proportions, muscle mass is a highly prized quality among competitive bodybuilders.

Max - Maximum effort for one repetition of an exercise.

Meal - Food that's eaten at one time. Each meal should contain a portion (which is the size of the palm of your hand or your clenched fist) of protein and a portion of carbohydrates.

Metabolic Rate - The rate you convert energy stores into working energy in your body. In other words, it's how Fast your "whole system" runs. The metabolic rate is controlled by a number of factors, including: muscle mass (the greater your muscle mass, the greater your metabolic rate), calorie intake, and exercise.

Metabolism - The use of nutrients by the body. It's the process by which sub-stances come into the body and the rate at which they are used.

Mid-Section - Muscles of abdominal area, including upper and lower abdominals, obliques and rectus abdominis muscles.

Military Press - Pressing a barbell from upper chest upward in standing or sitting position.

Minerals - Naturally occurring, inorganic substances that are essential for human life, which play a role in many vital metabolic processes.

Muscle - Tissue consisting of fibers organized into bands or bundles that contract to cause bodily movement. Muscle fibers run in the same direction as the action they perform.

Muscle Head - Slang for someone whose life is dominated by muscle building training.

Muscle Spasm - Sudden, involuntary contraction of muscle or muscle group.

Muscle Tone - Condition in which a muscle is in a Constant yet slight state of contraction and appears firm.

Muscularity - An alternative term for "definition" or "cuts."

 Myositis - Muscular soreness due to inflammation that often Occurs 1-2 days after unaccustomed exercise.



Nautilus - Isokinetic type exercise machine, which attempts to match resistance with user's force.

 Negative Reps - One or two partners help you lift a weight up to 50% heavier than you would normally lift to finish point of movement. Then you slowly lower weight on your own.

NPC - The National Physique Committee, Inc., which administers men's and women's amateur bodybuilding competitions in the United States. The NPC National Champions in each weight division are annually sent abroad to compete in the IFBB World Championships.

 Non Locks - Performing an exercise without going through complete range of motion. For example, doing squat without coming to full lockout position of knees or pressing a barbell without locking out elbows.

Nutrients - Components of food that help nourish the body: that is, they provide energy or serve as "building materials." These nutrients include carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals, water, etc.

Nutrition - The applied science of eating to foster greater health, fitness, and muscular gains. Through correct application of nutritional practices, you can selectively add muscle mass to your physique, or totally strip away all body fat, revealing the hard-earned muscles lying beneath your skin.



Obliques - Abbreviation for external obliques, the muscles to either side of abdominals that rotate and flex the trunk.

Odd Lifts - Exercises used in competition other than snatch and clean and jerk, such as squats, bench presses, and barbell curls.

Olympian - A term reserved for use when referring only to a bodybuilder who has competed in the Mr. Olympia or Ms. Olympia competitions.

 Olympic Barbell - A special type of barbell used in weightlifting and powerlifting competitions, but also used by bodybuilders in heavy basic exercises such as squats, bench presses, barbell bent rows, standing barbell curls, standing barbell presses, and deadlifts. An Olympic barbell sans collars weighs 45 pounds, and each collar weighs five pounds.

Olympic Lifting - The type of weightlifting competition contested at the Olympic Games every four years, as well as at national and international competitions each year. Two lifts (the snatch and the clean and jerk) are contested in a wide variety of weight classes.

One Rep Max - The heaviest weight with which a person can complete one full repetition. (e.g. "My max rep on the bench press is 325 pounds.")

Onion Skin - Slang denoting skin with very low percentage of subcutaneous fat which helps accentuate muscularity.

Optimal Nutrition - The best possible nutrition; distinct from merely adequate nutrition, which is characterized by no overt deficiency. This term describes people free from marginal deficiencies, imbalances, and toxicities, and who are not at risk for such.

Overload Principal - Applying a greater load than normal to a muscle to increase its capability.



Partial Reps - Performing an exercise without going through a complete range of motion either at the beginning or end of a rep.

Peak Contraction - Exercising a muscle until it cramps by using shortened movements. Pecs - Abbreviation for pectoral muscles of the chest.

Pecs or Pectorals - The large muscles of the chest.

P.H.A. - Peripheral Heart Action; a system of training where you go from one exercise to another, with little or no rest, preferably alternating upper body and lower body exercises. Designed for cardiovascular training and to develop muscle mass.

 Plates - The flat discs placed on the ends of barbell and dumbbell bars to increase the weight of the apparatus. Although some plates are made from vinyl-covered concrete, the best and most durable plates are manufactured from metal.

Plyometrics - Explosive movements (like jumping squats) to improve power and strength, generally for a sport.

Plyometric Exercise - Where muscles are loaded suddenly and stretched, then quickly contracted to produce a movement, Athletes who must jump do these, i.e. jumping off bench to ground, quickly rebounding to another bench.

Pose - Each individual stance that a bodybuilder does onstage in order to highlight his muscular development.

Pose Down - Bodybuilders performing their poses at the same time in a competition, trying to out pose one another.

 Portion - The amount of carbohydrates or protein one should eat with each meal. A portion is the size of the palm of your hand or your clenched fist.

Poundage - The amount of weight that you use in an exercise, whether that weight is on a barbell, dumbbell, or exercise machine.

Power - Strength + Speed.

Power Lifting - A second form of competitive weightlifting (not contested in the Olympics, however) featuring three lifts: the squat, bench press, and deadlift. Power lifting is contested both nationally and internationally in a wide variety of weight classes.

Power Lifts - Three movements used in powerlifting competition: the squat, bench press and dead lift.

Power Mindset - The state of being where you feel self-reliant, confident, and strong.

Power Training - System of weight training using low repetitions, heavy weights.

Progression - The act of gradually adding to the amount of resistance that you use in each exercise. Without consistent progression in your workouts, you won't overload your muscles sufficiently to promote optimum increases in hypertrophy.

Progressive Resistance - Method of training where weight is increased as muscles gain strength and endurance, the backbone of all weight training.

Protein - Proteins are the building blocks of muscle, enzymes, and sonic hormones. They are made up of amino acids and are essential for growth and repair in the body. A gram of protein contains four calories. Those from animal sources contain the essential amino acids. Those from vegetable sources contain some but not all of the essential amino acids. Proteins are broken up by the body to produce amino acids.

Pump AKA "the pump" - The tight, blood-congested feeling in a muscle after it has been intensely trained. Muscle pump is caused by a rapid influx of blood into the muscles to remove fatigue toxins and replace supplies of fuel and oxygen. A good muscle pump indicates that you have optimally worked a muscle group.

Pumping Iron - Phrase that has been in use since the 1950s, but recently greatly popularized. Lifting weights.

Pumped - Slang meaning the muscles have been made large by increasing blood supply to them through exercise.



Quads - Abbreviation for quadriceps femoris muscles, muscles on top of legs, which consist of 4 parts (heads).

Quality Training - Training just before bodybuilding competition where intervals between sets are drastically reduced to enhance muscle mass and density, and low-calorie diet is followed to reduce body fat.



Range of Motion (ROM) - Refers to the limits of motion of the joints and muscles associated with an exercise.

Repetition (rep) - The number of times you lift and lower a weight in one set of an exercise. For example, if you lift and lower a weight 10 times before set-ting the weight down, you have completed 10 "reps" in one set.

Rep - The number of times you lift and lower a weight in one set of an exercise. For example, if you lift and lower a weight 10 times before set-ting the weight down, you have completed 10 "reps" in one set.

Rep Out - Repeat the same exercise over and over until you are unable to do any more.

Reps - Abbreviation for REPETITIONS.

Resistance Training - Working out with weights or using your body to resist some other force. This includes a wide spectrum of motion, from push-ups to dumbbell curls.

Rest Interval - Pause between sets of an exercise.

Rest Pause Training - Training method where you press out one difficult repetition, then replace bar in stands, then after a 10-20 second rest, do another rep, etc.

Rest Period - The amount of time you allow between sets and exercises.

Rest-Pause Training - Training method where you press out one difficult repetition, then replace bar in stands, then after a 10-20 second rest, do another rep, etc.

Ripped - Slang meaning extreme muscularity.

Roid or Roids - Slang for ANABOLIC STEROID.

Routine - Also called a training schedule or program, a routine is the total list of exercises, sets, and reps (and sometimes weights) used in one training session.



Saturated fats - These are bad fats. They are called saturated because they contain no open spots on their carbon skeletons. These bad fats have been shown to raise cholesterol levels in the body. Sources of these fats include animal foods and hydrogenated vegetable oils, such as margarine.

Set - Group of reps (lifting and lowering a weight) of an exercise after which you take a brief rest period. For example, if you complete 10 reps, set the weight down, complete eight more reps, set the weight down again, and repeat for six more reps, you have completed three sets of the exercise.

Sleeve - The hollow metal tube fit over the bar on most exercise barbell and dumbbell sets. This sleeve makes it easier for the bar to rotate in your hands as you do an exercise. Spotters - Training partners who stand by to act as safety helpers when you perform such heavy exercises as squats and bench presses. If you get stuck under the weight or begin to lose control of it, spotters can rescue you and prevent needless injuries.

Slow Twitch Muscle - Muscle cells that contract slowly, are resistant to fatigue and are utilized in endurance activities such as long-distance running, cycling or swimming.

Snatch - Olympic lift where weight is lifted from floor to overhead, (with arms extended) in one continuous movement (see also CLEAN AND JERK).

Spot - Assist if called upon by someone performing an exercise.

Spotter - Training partners who stand by to act as safety helpers when you perform such heavy exercises as squats and bench presses. If you get stuck under the weight or begin to lose control of it, spotters can rescue you and prevent needless injuries.

Steriods AKA Roids - Prescription drugs which mimic male hormones, but without most of the androgenic side effects of actual testosterone. Many bodybuilders use these dangerous drugs to help increase muscle mass and strength.

Sticking Point - A stalling out of bodybuilding progress.

Strength - The ability of a muscle to produce maximum amount of force.

Strength Training - Using resistance weight training to build maximum muscle force.

Stretch - A type of exercise program in which you assume exaggerated postures that stretch muscles, joints, and connective tissues, hold these positions for several seconds, relax and then repeat the postures. Regular stretching exercise promotes body flexibility.

Stretch Marks - Tears (slight scars) in skin caused if muscle or fat tissue has expanded in volume faster than skin can grow.

Superset - A superset is when one set is done directly after the other with no rest in between. For example, a superset could be bench press and dumbbell flies.

Supplement - This is a term used to describe a preparation such as a tablet, pill, or powder that contains nutrients. Supplements are used to help you achieve optimal nutrient intake.

Swole - A compliment regarding the overall muscularity or massiveness of a physique or muscle. To look swole is to look muscular, big, massive, or huge.

Symmetry - The shape or general outline of a person's body, as when seen in silhouette. If you have good symmetry, you will have relatively wide shoulders, flaring lats, a small waist-hip structure, and generally small joints.



Tendon - A band or cord of strong, fibrous tissue that connects muscles to bone.

Testosterone - The male hormone primarily responsible for the maintenance of muscle mass and strength induced by heavy training. Testosterone is secondarily responsible for developing such secondary male sex characteristics as a deep voice, body hair, and male pattern baldness.

Thick Skin - Smooth skin caused by too much fatty tissue between the layers of muscle and beneath skin.


Training Effect - Increase in functional capacity of muscles as result of increased (overload) placed upon them.

 Training Straps - Cotton or leather straps wrapped around wrists, then under and over a bar held by clenched hands to aid in certain lifts (rowing, chin-ups, shrugs, dead lifts, cleans, etc.) where you might lose your grip before working muscle to desired capacity-

Training to Failure - Continuing a set until it is impossible to compete another rep without assistance.

Traps - Abbreviation for trapezius muscles, the largest muscles of the back and neck that draw head backward and rotate scapula.

Tri Sets - Alternating back and forth between 3 exercises until prescribed number of sets is completed.

Trimming Down - To gain hard muscular appearance by losing body fat.



Upper Abs - Abbreviation for abdominal muscles above navel.

Universal Machine - One of several types of machines where weights are on a track or rails and are lifted by levers or pulleys.

Unsaturated Fat - These are 'good' fats. They are called unsaturated because they have one or more open spots on their carbon skeletons. This category of fats includes the essential fatty acids linoleic and linolenic. The main sources of these fats are fromm plant foods, such as safflower, sunflower, arid flaxseed oils.



Variable Resistance - Strength training equipment where the machine varies amount of weight being lifted to match strength curve for a particular exercise-usually with a cam, lever arm or hydraulic cylinder. Also referred to as "ACCOMMODATING RESISTANCE."

Vascularity - Increase in size and number of observable veins. Highly desirable in bodybuilding.

Vitamins - Organic compounds that are vital to Tile, indispensable to bodily function, and needed in minute amounts. They are calorie-free essential nutrients. Many of them function as coenzymes. supporting a multitude of biological functions.



Warm Up - The 10-15-minute session of light calisthenics, aerobic exercise, and stretching taken prior to handling heavy bodybuilding training movements. A good warm-up helps to prevent injuries and actually allows you to get more out of your training than if you went into a workout totally cold.

Weight Class - In order for bodybuilders to compete against men of similar size, the IFBB has instituted weight classes for all amateur competition. The normal men's weight classes are 70 kilograms (kg), 154 pounds (lbs); 80 kg, 176 lbs; 90 kg, 198 lbs; and over 90 kg. In a minority of competitions, particularly in the Far East, one additional class 65 kg, or 143 lbs is also contested.

Weightlifting - The competitive form of weight training in which each athlete attempts to lift as much as he can in well-defined exercises. Olympic lifting and power lifting are the two types of weightlifting competition.

Weight Training Belt - Thick leather belt used to support lower back. Used while doing squats, military presses, dead lifts, bent rowing, etc

 Weight Lifting Belt or "weight belt" - Thick leather belt used to support lower back. Used while doing squats, military presses, dead lifts, bent rowing, etc

Workout - A bodybuilding or weight-training session.







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