At WiseGEEK, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.
The best exercises to build muscle will vary according to the area of the body a person wants to develop. In most cases, weight training exercises are used to build muscle, though some cardiovascular activities can also build muscle. One of the best ways to consistently build muscle throughout the body is to isolate particular areas of the body the person wants to develop and research the best exercises for those areas of the body. Some of the best exercises to build muscle include bench presses, curls, squats, dips, and rows, though plenty of other exercises exist to help build muscle in certain parts of the body.
Many weight lifters focus almost exclusively on building muscle in the upper body, but it is just as important to do exercises to build muscle in the legs as well as the core muscles. Bench presses and curls, when performed correctly, can help develop muscle in the chest and arms, but the core muscles may not be able to support the spine adequately, leading to pain or discomfort. Sit ups, squats, leg cycles, and other core building exercises will be necessary to ensure the abs and lower back muscles get developed adequately as well.
Squats are one of the most important exercises to build muscle, since so many different muscles of the body get worked through this one exercise. The squats can be done in a variety of ways, either using a squat machine at a gym or by using a squat rack that works in conjunction with a barbell and weights. Some squats can even be done at home with no weights at all. Squats will work many of the leg muscles including the calves, thighs, hip flexors and groin, as well as the core muscles such as the abs and lower back. This is a great exercise to include in any muscle building workout.
Cardiovascular workouts can also act as exercises to build muscle, particularly running, swimming, and cycling. These exercises improve oxygen intake and help burn fat, which are both key components to overall health that can promote muscle growth. The muscles of the body are used constantly throughout these exercises as well, which can lead to muscle development. Cardiovascular workouts improve blood flow to the muscles as well, which means the overall function of the muscles will be greatly improved.