The answer is both, there are benefits to training with bodyweight and free weights. Let’s take a look at both and see how each approach can pay off. For starters, body weight training simply means training with only your body weight – no use of weights. Free weight training simply means training with that addition of added weight – it could be free weights or machine weight.
Advantages of Body Weight Training
The most obvious advantage of training with body weight is you don’t need weights. It’s mobile. You can do most bodyweight training exercises almost anywhere. Aside from being affordable and mobile bodyweight training is a very efficient workout. Considering no equipment is involved you can easily transition from one workout to the next and never have to wait for somebody to finish using the machine you need. Bodyweight training is also a great choice because it can be easily modified for any fitness level. Can’t do full pushup? Modify it by resting your knees on the floor and work your way up. Overall, convenience and adaptability are the biggest advantages of body weight training.
Advantages of Weight Training
Humans have been weight training in various forms since the dawn of time. The essence of weight training is lifting heavy things. Several things happen when you lift heavy things. The greatest thing that happens is you gain strength and burn fat. More muscle increases metabolism and burns fat. Weight training strengthens bones. Stress created from weights makes bones and joints stronger, just like the stress that makes muscles bigger. When bones sense stress, they deposit more bone adding reinforcements. There’s good stress and bad stress and weight training with proper technique gives the body the good stress it needs to be strong and stable.
You don’t need to choose one or the other when you can have the best of both worlds. Even if you have a gym membership you can still incorporate bodyweight training exercises like push ups and pull ups into your routine. One of the time-tested marks of fitness is the pull-up. If you can throw around a lot of weight but can’t pull yourself up a bar several times, then you’re not at your best. Functional strength and movement are the things everyone needs. There’s no better combination than body weight and free weight training to achieve optimal performance.