Gym Training Cards | Are they really needed? The truth

Who I am
Louise Hay

Author and references

From the writer Emanuele Di Palo, majoring in Physiotherapy and passionate about bodybuilding and fitness.

Gym Workout Cards

All athletes who approach bodybuilding, at least in the beginning, rely on training cards created, in the best of cases, by the instructor of the gym's weight room (who often, in reality, makes a card that he then copies as it is for all the customers who ask for it!).

At worst, and this happens more often than you might think, young athletes rely on “prepackaged” cards found on the web, taken by friends and acquaintances, or even worse by emulating the training schedules of the most famous and renowned bodybuilders, hoping in this way to reach their same shape.

Are they really needed?

The truth is that a perfect card for every athlete DOES NOT EXIST. It should be created each time in a meticulous and exclusively personalized way for each individual.

No one else should be "suitable" to perform the same exercises in the same way as the person for whom this training schedule was designed. Furthermore, assuming that this happens, there cannot be any athletic trainer who knows a priori how many repetitions to do, how many series, or even what weight to use for the exercises. This is just ridiculous, because the human body is always different, unique, and the reasons are different.

Each individual is differentiated by sex, age, physiognomy, different growth trends related to metabolism (ectomorph, mesomorph, endomorph), bone and muscle structure, experience, knowledge, objectives. Therefore any generalization is absolutely inappropriate and it has no reason to exist.

In short, the cards are useful and indeed they are essential for training that can be defined as such, but they must inevitably be PERSONAL and linked to the specific needs of each and absolutely cannot be so specific as to establish upstream weights, series and repetitions that the athlete who will follow this form will have to do, because these are all things that the athlete himself will have to establish the first time he will follow the card and will change (without upsetting, of course) from time to time, shaping it and adapting it to the best of your physiognomy, your ability to do one more repetition, or on the contrary of not being able to do the last series, maybe manage it badly and trying in vain.

The Cards Are Guidelines

I'm pretty sure the real secret to effective muscle growth, when it comes to training cards, is just this: a card is simply a guideline, a list of exercises that you should do for a certain period of time to stimulate your muscles (not changing it too soon or too late) but the performance itself depends solely on your possibilities.

If you are loaded, if after the nth exercise you still have energy and motivation, do another set, do one more repetition, do a wider and more complete movement.

If you have no more energy, you are tired and you think that the muscle is completely saturated, give up the weights, and take one set off the board without getting too much trouble, recover and move on to the next exercise.

It is far more productive to lift weights for less time but better, using all the range of motion, than doing one last set in a completely wrong and unwilling way. This will not only be useless, but also potentially counterproductive: you could unnecessarily damage your muscles, your joints, or worse still cause an injury due to sudden failure.

The same is true not only for numbers, but also for the methods contained in the cards, such as the degrees of inclination of the bench, the positioning and width of the grip on the lat machine, the seat distance on the pulley, etc.

These are all parameters for which you can accept recommendations but which you cannot take for absolute truth from the start, because you may find with experience that a run gives you more results and stimulates your muscle fibers better if done in a slightly different way, with a different positioning of the bench and hands. This obviously does not imply a variation of the CORRECT METHOD OF EXECUTION!

Learning to know your body, to feel the muscles that are working from time to time, a perceive the work done these are all factors that will teach you to decide autonomously the countless variables related to the training cards and will make you immune from ignorance of the cards made in a completely superficial way and without tangible bases of proven effectiveness.

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