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the_fake_webmaster
04-15-2009, 11:41 PM
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* Note: How can I win? Answer all questions in the order that they are asked.

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TOPIC: How Can One Strengthen Stabilizer Muscles?

For the week of: 4/15 - 4/20
Monday @ Midnight Is The Final Cut (Mountain Time, US & Canada).

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Although strengthening stabilizer muscles does not give the appearance and feeling of training large muscles, they still play an important role in exercising.

How can one strengthen stabilizer muscles? Be specific.

Is it important to train stabilizer muscles? Why or why not?

Who would benefit the most from strengthening stabilizer muscles?

* IMPORTANT: Please make sure your responses are original and not copied from previous topics.

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Don't discuss any other topic in this section. ONLY discuss the question above.

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UCIMTHEROCK
04-16-2009, 08:10 AM
I personally believe that your stabilizer muscles are trained when you do any barbell or dumbell work those are the muscles that guide the weight rather than the machine.
I do no specific training for these muscles, but I do start every workout with basic dumbell or barbell work most every time.
I do use some machines but not many I stck to very basic stuff.
Military press
Squat
Deadlift
Bench press
barbell rows.
In fact when I have taken some time off and get back to the gym I do those 5 exercises 2 times a week for 6 weeks and thats it!
My whole body is smoked and the gains come quick and I know for a fact there are no muscles left out even stabilizers when you do basic work.
KISS method is what I always use. Keep It Simple Stupid.
What would you do with your life if you knew you could not fail?

nooblifter99
04-17-2009, 06:49 PM
lift hard eat hard... that is all

Megapron
04-17-2009, 11:20 PM
Strengthening the Stabilizer Muscles

If you have been involved in bodybuilding for a while, you?ve probably heard fellow lifters discussing stabilizer muscles. There are many things out there that might sound complicated, but you?re lucky, this isn?t one of them. Much like how a foundation stabilizes a house, your stabilizer muscles help to keep you balanced and upright when moving. Your stabilizer muscles are not directly involved in the lifting of the weight, but help keep your body steady, through isometric muscle contractions. Now if you think about it, these muscles sound pretty important. If you didn?t have stabilizer muscles your knees would buckle during squats and your elbows during the bench press. The good thing is that if you?ve been doing many full range of motion, free weight movements you?ve already been training them. Free weight movements, which includes any exercise done with a barbell, dumbbell or cable (I consider cables redirected dumbbells, as you are not lifting the weight in a guided path) require you to balance the weights yourself, as you are not lifting the weight in a pre-set path, as with machines.

The methods:

1. Free Weights: When doing free weight movements, your stabilizer muscles contract in order to keep your body steady. Since stabilizer muscles are important to free weight movements, it makes sense to train those using free weights. Exercises that recruit a great number of muscles are better for strengthening your stabilizer muscles. For example, during the squat your body needs to stabilize itself more than if you were performing curls. Some of the best exercises include: Bench Press, Squat, Deadlift, Pull-ups, Rows, and Shoulder Press.
2. Unilateral exercises: Adding in single arm/leg exercises to your program will not only help to increase the strength of your stabilizer muscles, but will help significantly correct any muscular imbalances in your physique. These exercises will be done using dumbbells or cables. E.g. the barbell bench press is a great exercise for strengthening/building your chest, shoulders, and triceps but, dumbbell benching is better for shoulder stability. Some of the best exercises include: Dumbbell Bench Press/1-arm Dumbbell Bench Press, Dumbbell Rows/1-arm Dumbbell Row, Single-leg squats, Lunges, Step-ups, Dumbbell Curls, and Dumbbell Tricep extensions.


The workout:

This workout designed for strengthening your stabilizer muscles, and will utilize a three day split.

Monday: Chest, Triceps, and Shoulders.
Tuesday: Off or Cardio.
Wednesday: Legs, Abs, and Lower back.
Thursday: Off or Cardio.
Friday: Back, Biceps, and Traps.
Saturday: Off or Cardio.
Sunday: Off.

Monday: Chest, Triceps, and Shoulders.
1. Barbell Bench Press: work up to a heavy set of 5 reps.
2. 1-arm Incline Dumbbell Bench Press: 4x8(each arm)
3. Dumbbell Chest flies: 3x10
4. Alternating Dumbbell Tricep Extensions: 3x10-12
5. Dumbbell Front raises: 3x12-15

Wednesday: Legs, Abs, and Lower back.
1. Deadlift: work up to a heavy set of 5 reps.
2. Front squat: 3x6-8
3. Barbell Step-ups: 3x10-12
4. Weighted Back raises: 3x15-20
5. Leg Extensions: 3x12-15
6. Weighted Sit-ups: 3x12-15

Friday: Back, Biceps, and Traps.
1. Weighted Pull-ups: 4x6
2. 1-arm Dumbbell Row: 3x8-10(each)
3. Close-grip Lat Pulldown: 3x10-12
4. Dumbbell Rear Delt flies: 3x12-15
5. Alternating Dumbbell Hammer Curls: 3x12(each)
6. 1-arm Dumbbell Shrugs: 3x12-15(each)

As you can see this workout incorporates both free weight and unilateral exercises, both of which are vital for strengthening your stabilizer muscles. Also as most lifters are fully aware off, free weight exercises are the exercises that generally give you the most bang for your buck; so they should make up the majority of your program regardless. After 3-4 weeks these exercises can be changed up, as variety is one of the keys to steady progression.

The people who would benefit most from training their stabilizer muscles are lifters who rarely use free weights, non-lifters and possibly people with balance issues. Individuals who use only machines are selling themselves short of full muscular development. Machine equipment forces the lifter to lift the weight in a pre-set, guided path (e.g. the leg press, or chest press); this takes many of the stabilizer muscles out of the movement because the lifter is no longer required to balance the weight. Non-lifters or people who have problems balancing themselves during certain activities, can benefit from this type of training. Even non-lifters who are very active will not have the muscular and stabilizer muscle development of a dedicated bodybuilder.

To recap:

Using a lifting program, such as the one laid out above, can help develop the stabilizer muscles. The free weight and unilateral movements will help strengthen the stabilizer muscles, while getting you into to amazing shape to boot.



Sources:
http://www.steadyhealth.com/articles/Understanding_So_Called_Stabilizer_Muscles_a518_f0 .html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muscle_contraction

wtfmate08
04-18-2009, 01:01 AM
How can one strengthen stabilizer muscles? Be specific.
The main way to strengthen stablizer muscles is to get off of the machines and start using some free weights (cables are included in free weights)! Though stating the obvious, stabilizer muscles stabilize. There isn't much (if any) stabilization when you use machines because the weight moves in a specific path that you cannot control. When using a barbell or dumbbell, you have control over the plane of movement.

While barbells and dumbbells are both superior to machines in terms of strengthening stabilizers, dumbbells definitely hold the highest rank. With unilateral exercises (i.e. that with a dumbbell) each side has to work to keep the weight in the right spot, as opposed to using both sides to stabilize it.

Is it important to train stabilizer muscles? Why or why not?
Definitely! People who have never trained with dumbbells on, say, flat bench press should find that their barbell bench gets much stronger after they work their stabilizers much more with dumbbells. If you train on machines for too long then you stabilizers will be very weak compared to your other muscles and the transition to free weights will be much harder. And let's be honest: how often do people ask how much you can press on the machine? It is always "how much can you bench" with a barbell (freeweights!)

Who would benefit the most from strengthening stabilizer muscles?
I can't think of a single person who wouldn't benefit. As I said before, I think powerlifters can gain some pounds on their lifts by training their stabilizers, bodybuilders can bring growth to new muscles, and athletes can help keep themselves from getting injured by training these muscles.

Silver_Hydra
04-18-2009, 03:52 AM
Although I'm not interested in winning this week; maybe the next person to post a reply should mention overhead squats or possibly turkish get-ups if rotator cuff stability is the topic.
Just a thought.

signature166
04-18-2009, 10:14 AM
Use free-weights, do your push-ups, and for lower body--do single leg variations such as the single-leg squat, single-leg deadlift, bulgarian split squats, step-ups, lunges, reverse lunges. Add these into your routine to supplement the two-legged versions.

soundcheck129
04-20-2009, 07:23 PM
Although strengthening stabilizer muscles does not give the appearance and feeling of training large muscles, they still play an important role in exercising.

Often times, people say they want a beach body, but this isn't exactly the case...what they want is biceps and abs, and they couldn't care less about the countless other unsung muscles that hold everything together. After all, how many times have you seen a guy turn heads flexing his erector spinae? That's right, zero. However, stabilizers are essential, providing support for prime movers through the entire range of motion. The muscular system works best when every part is working together.

How can one strengthen stabilizer muscles? Be specific.

Trying to define stabilizer muscles can be tricky, because the muscle taking on this role changes depending on what exercise you are performing. For example, a sit-up features the abdominals as prime movers, but during a deadlift, the abdominals are stabilizers. Therefore, the key to strengthening stabilizers is to perform a wide variety of lifts that target every muscle that you can, because at some point they are all bound to be stabilizers.

But let's say you're only concerned with the big three lifts - bench press, squats and deadlifts. Many workout plans are based on these lifts, and the muscle groups they focus on (chest, back and legs) are the focus of a lot of other exercises as well.

Bench Press
For a bench press, the prime movers are your chest muscles, or pectorals. But they're not working alone; the anterior deltoids and triceps perform valuable roles as stabilizers. And while the bench press does work these muscles, there are other exercises that target them directly. To isolate and strengthen your deltoids, you can perform lateral or front raises with dumbbells. And for your triceps, you can perform pulldowns or overhead extensions.

Squat
The squat is a demanding lower body exercise, focusing on your glutes and quadriceps to drive resistance upward. The main stabilizers here are the lower back, calves and hamstrings. To isolate your lower back, try some good mornings or hyperextensions. For your calves, seated or standing calf lifts will do. Hamstrings can be hit hard with leg curls and walking lunges.

Deadlift
The deadlift may be the most demanding lift, as the calves, erector spinae, hamstrings and quadriceps are all prime movers. Your abdominals, trapezius and forearms are a few of the stabilizing muscles. Your abdominals can be strengthened with weighted crunches and leg lifts; your traps with upright rows and shrugs; and your forearms with wrist curls and reverse curls.

It is important to note, though, that the stabilizer muscles are also strengthened when acting as stabilizers, not just as prime movers. And because all of your muscles play a role in stabilization at some point, your best bet is to incorporate many different exercises into your routine. Additionally, performing a lot of compound lifts will ensure that a large number of your muscles are active during each exercise, possibly getting a chance to act as stabilizers.

There are some also non-traditional means to strengthen your stabilizing muscles. Using sandbags or weights filled with water results in an uneven load, and your stabilizers will be challenged to lift the load but keep it balanced at the same time.

Similarly, single-leg and single-arm exercises activate stabilizers more than traditional lifts. This is because these lifts involve an element of balance that is not present in exercises that use both of your limbs simultaneously. For example, single-leg squats will challenge your back and core as stabilizers while your glutes and quads support your weight. In addition, performing a curl with a dumbbell instead of a barbell will strengthen your forearms more than a traditional curl because one arm's weakness cannot be overcome by depending on the other arm. Free weights are a great way to strengthen stabilizer muscles, because you can't rely on the set structure of a machine to dictate your movement and provide support.

Is it important to train stabilizer muscles? Why or why not?

It is not only important to train stabilizer muscles, it is imperative. Stabilizer muscles provide the balance and support for taxing compound lifts, allowing you to perform major exercises such as squats and deadlifts. Without this stabilization, you would not be able to produce as much force in these compound maneuvers. Training stabilizer muscles is vital to sports performance and ensures that your entire muscular system works as a whole. In a way, your stabilizer muscles are the unsung heroes of the kinetic chain, allowing other muscles to produce force as prime movers. Having weak stabilizers puts extra stress on the prime movers, reducing overall strength.

But stabilizer muscles can also come to the forefront and be prime movers as well. This is another reason to train and strengthen them. If you ignored your stabilizers, you wouldn't be able to put up much weight on lifts that rely mostly on stabilizer muscles. In short, stabilizers need to be trained because you never know when you're going to be using them!

Who would benefit the most from strengthening stabilizer muscles?

By now, it should be apparent that anyone who wants to make the most of their training program should do everything they can to strengthen stabilizer muscles. If you hope to have a lot of strength for compound movements, training stabilizer muscles is a must.

One particular group of people that rely a lot on stabilizer muscles are athletes. Sports involve a lot of situations in which one must produce force while moving or while off-balance. For this reason, strong stabilizer muscles are a must. For instance, when I play hockey, I often find defensemen exerting a lot of force on me to try to knock me away from the puck. However, strong stabilizer muscles in my legs allow me to maintain balance, keep moving forward, and still manage to produce enough force to shoot the puck. Gymnasts, too, must have extremely strong stabilizer muscles so that they can perform complex movements while balancing in the air, often with one limb. The importance of stabilizer muscles cannot be overstated - they are the ultimate team players.

History in Effect
04-20-2009, 08:39 PM
Stabilize or Die


When people first start working out, they are just trying to get a feel for the weight room. They don't care about what exercises to do or what equipment to use. In fact, I had no clue what stabilizer muscles were until I started to do research on them. Stabilizer muscles are not necessarily used in the direct movement of the body, but they keep you steady. The impact of stabilizer muscles is not felt during the first workout, but you will notice it in the long-term. Many of your bodyparts can be stabilzer muscles. For example, supporting the barbell on your shoulder and traps is key to performing squats.


How can one strengthen stabilizer muscles? Be specific.

First of all, stabilzer muscles are used most when performing free weight exercises. The use of machines does not since you follow in a fixed path of motion. The use of dumbbells on the other hand is dependent on you. You must make sure to be careful when using dumbbells and not swing the weight. Be careful and if you need a spotter get one.

You should pick exercises that you feel in your whole body. Exercises that target the whole body release hormones throughout the body. These exercises include stuff like that:

Squats- you feel them in your whole body and you have to prep your body for them. Your back, neck, and shoulders have to be ready to support the weight and you have to be strong enough in your legs to do a rep.

DB Presses-These presses would include bench press in any variety, shoulder press, and others. When I do bench press with a lot of weight, I have to get my whole body ready to lift. You feel it through your whole body.

Bodyweight exercises- Exercises that involve you supporting your bodyweight are very hard. These include dips, pushups, chinups, and pullups. Your whole body must be working in tandem to do these exercises. A pullups involves your back and biceps along with forearms working in tandem.

Misc exercies-I call these misc because I rarely do them because I am not training for something in particular. Unilateral training falls under this principle. One-legged or one arm exercsies work the core like no other and are very hard to do. If you can do unilateral movements, you are probably an all around complete athlete.

Bulgarian Deadlift- is a fascination exercise that is beneficial to any person and builds muscles in your legs.
Source:http://www.mensfitness.com/fitness/strength_training/73
Who would have thought
Putting stuff in wheelbarrows or picking up kegs are something you might see in the World's Strongest Man, but they do work the stabilzer muscles.

Is it important to train stabilizer muscles? Why or why not?

It is important to train stabilizer muscles, because it keeps your body
guessing. A body that is constantly guessing will have more muscle growth and you experience better strength gains. Doing barbell weights all the time is not a good idea and mixing it up by doing dumbbells gets those stabilzer muscles working great. You will break plateaus for sure and set new personal records. As soon I started hitting those dumbbells, I could feel new muscles being worked. Therefore, stabilzer muscles bring out new muscles in varied ways.

Who would benefit the most from strengthening stabilizer muscles?

Everybody can benefit from strengthening stabilzer muscles. You use stabilzer muscles everyday. I walk up two flights of dorm room steps and to class. You are stabilizer your whole body to keep from falling down the stairs or tripping. Using the incline during treadmill involves your legs having to be stabilized to walk with the incline and not down. Athletes benefit the most from using stabilzer muscles. Wide receivers are often faced at the line with aggressive cornebacks who attempt to jam them as soon the ball is hiked. An athlete who trains stabilzer muscles adequately can get off the line faster and also react quicker being able to push the defensive back off the line.

mrkdrt
04-20-2009, 10:23 PM
Although strengthening stabilizer muscles does not give the appearance and feeling of training large muscles, they still play an important role in exercising.

It's all in the name - stabilize muscles. Their role is to stabilize your core, or a limb, and keep you in balance. That means any muscle that serves this purpose can be a stabilizer, but does not necessarily always act as a stabilizer. With that, it is possible to train your stabilizer muscles by putting them into action!

How can one strengthen stabilizer muscles? Be specific.

To be honest, anytime you are lifting with free-weights or even performing bodyweight exercises you are working your stabilizer muscles. But the types of exercises you perform greatly affect how many, and to what degree you are training your stabilizer muscles.

The best exercises to work your stabilizer muscles are compound exercises. Simply put, these exercises are multi-jointed. This means the movement uses several muscle groups - meaning more stabilizer muscles are required also. Take squats for example. As you perform the eccentric action your knees bend, your hips bend, and your core tightens to keep you balanced. This is working several stabilizer muscles in one movement. It's no surprise that the "Big Three" (squats, deadlifts and bench press) are part of this group of exercises. Choose Squats over Leg Press, Deadlifts over Hyperextensions and Leg Curls and Bench Press over Machine Bench Press - and you will be rewarded!

Isolation exercises, or exercises using machines, on the other hand, work across single joints. For example, when you do a hammer curl, the eccentric movement uses only the elbow joint as a pivot, requiring less stabilization than compound movements.

To train your stabilizer muscles further, you might want to use dumbbells instead of a barbell for some exercises, like bench press for example. Using dumbbells can call into action even more stabilizer muscles - to keep the single weight balanced in each arm, so you can perform the exercise.

So, to train your stabilizer muscles, lift! Easy enough, right? You're doing that anyway! But focus on free weights and compound exercises to keep them working for you! This does not mean ignore all isolation exercises, but focusing on compound will help you strengthen more stabilizer muscles, and lead to overall greater gains.

Is it important to train stabilizer muscles? Why or why not?

Training your stabilizer muscles is both critical and inevitable in most cases. A lot of exercises you cannot avoid training your stabilizer muscles. And why would you want to avoid it anyway?

Stabilizer muscles that are put in use consistently through training can have many benefits! For one, it is REQUIRED for many exercises. Without stabilization, you wouldn?t be able to perform much at all. Next time thank your stabilizers with a killer workout they won't forget! Having sufficient strength in your stabilizer muscles for a certain exercise can also help prevent injury performing the movement. Strong stabilizers help support heavier lifts. Heavier lifts, being more effective, can lead to greater gains in muscle size and strength.

Who would benefit the most from strengthening stabilizer muscles?

Everyone and anyone benefits from stronger stabilizer muscles. Not only in the gym, but stronger stabilizer muscles make daily activities, or other physical pursuits easier, and possible.

Anyone trying to achieve a greater level of fitness may appreciate his or her stabilizer muscles the most. Stronger stabilizers can help make heavier lifts - leading to bigger gains. Stronger stabilizers help balance - making athletics easier. If you are trying to break that plateau, come in first in a footrace, or dunk on kids at the court, stronger stabilizers will help you out for sure!

nooblifter99
04-21-2009, 05:48 PM
Although strengthening stabilizer muscles does not give the appearance and feeling of training large muscles, they still play an important role in exercising.

It's all in the name - stabilize muscles. Their role is to stabilize your core, or a limb, and keep you in balance. That means any muscle that serves this purpose can be a stabilizer, but does not necessarily always act as a stabilizer. With that, it is possible to train your stabilizer muscles by putting them into action!

How can one strengthen stabilizer muscles? Be specific.

To be honest, anytime you are lifting with free-weights or even performing bodyweight exercises you are working your stabilizer muscles. But the types of exercises you perform greatly affect how many, and to what degree you are training your stabilizer muscles.

The best exercises to work your stabilizer muscles are compound exercises. Simply put, these exercises are multi-jointed. This means the movement uses several muscle groups - meaning more stabilizer muscles are required also. Take squats for example. As you perform the eccentric action your knees bend, your hips bend, and your core tightens to keep you balanced. This is working several stabilizer muscles in one movement. It's no surprise that the "Big Three" (squats, deadlifts and bench press) are part of this group of exercises. Choose Squats over Leg Press, Deadlifts over Hyperextensions and Leg Curls and Bench Press over Machine Bench Press - and you will be rewarded!

Isolation exercises, or exercises using machines, on the other hand, work across single joints. For example, when you do a hammer curl, the eccentric movement uses only the elbow joint as a pivot, requiring less stabilization than compound movements.

To train your stabilizer muscles further, you might want to use dumbbells instead of a barbell for some exercises, like bench press for example. Using dumbbells can call into action even more stabilizer muscles - to keep the single weight balanced in each arm, so you can perform the exercise.

So, to train your stabilizer muscles, lift! Easy enough, right? You're doing that anyway! But focus on free weights and compound exercises to keep them working for you! This does not mean ignore all isolation exercises, but focusing on compound will help you strengthen more stabilizer muscles, and lead to overall greater gains.

Is it important to train stabilizer muscles? Why or why not?

Training your stabilizer muscles is both critical and inevitable in most cases. A lot of exercises you cannot avoid training your stabilizer muscles. And why would you want to avoid it anyway?

Stabilizer muscles that are put in use consistently through training can have many benefits! For one, it is REQUIRED for many exercises. Without stabilization, you wouldn?t be able to perform much at all. Next time thank your stabilizers with a killer workout they won't forget! Having sufficient strength in your stabilizer muscles for a certain exercise can also help prevent injury performing the movement. Strong stabilizers help support heavier lifts. Heavier lifts, being more effective, can lead to greater gains in muscle size and strength.

Who would benefit the most from strengthening stabilizer muscles?

Everyone and anyone benefits from stronger stabilizer muscles. Not only in the gym, but stronger stabilizer muscles make daily activities, or other physical pursuits easier, and possible.

Anyone trying to achieve a greater level of fitness may appreciate his or her stabilizer muscles the most. Stronger stabilizers can help make heavier lifts - leading to bigger gains. Stronger stabilizers help balance - making athletics easier. If you are trying to break that plateau, come in first in a footrace, or dunk on kids at the court, stronger stabilizers will help you out for sure!

Today, 12:23 AM EPIC FLAIL

History in Effect
04-21-2009, 07:58 PM
you fail above...cause its 12:00 mountain time..lol

wtfmate08
04-21-2009, 08:14 PM
And because you spelled fail wrong.

nooblifter99
04-22-2009, 06:14 AM
And because you spelled fail wrong.

you fail because no one spells it right as an act of being humorous and therefore you fail.

wtfmate08
04-22-2009, 07:50 AM
this thread has almost become epic

nooblifter99
04-22-2009, 05:38 PM
this thread has almost become epic

lol

Emma-Leigh
04-22-2009, 08:47 PM
Keep it friendly please people.

Warnings given...

And thanking muchly in advance.

:)