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_Wolf_ 05-30-2006 09:01 PM

Should Females Train Differently Than Males?
Should Females Train Differently Than Males?

by Joe DeFranco

When people ask me what are the biggest differences between designing strength-training programs for females compared to males, my answer usually surprises them. That is because the basic principles should be the same for both genders: train bodyweight exercises before using external resistance, train the core (abs & low back), favor multiple-joint exercises instead of isolation movements, and focus a good deal of their training on the “posterior chain” (hamstrings, gluteals and low back).

Despite the many similarities of male and female strength training, there are subtle differences to consider. First of all, females mature earlier than males. Therefore, in general, females can begin strength training earlier than males. Also, since females have less muscle mass, on average, than males, they are also more susceptible to deconditioning. That is why a female strength-training program should have the athlete continue to train during the competitive season. This is because the drop-off in strength is more dramatic for females when strength training is stopped.

Overall, strength training offers female athletes the same benefits that it offers male athletes! Regardless of their sport or gender, any athlete can benefit from increased sprinting speed, strength, balance, decreased body fat levels and a reduced incidence of injuries – all of which a properly designed strength-training program can provide. Also, studies have proven that strength training can have a positive effect on bone density, which will decrease your risk of osteoporosis later in life.

Even with all of the positive research out there with regards to strength training and female athletes, I still get asked the same question all of the time, “Will I end up looking like a man if I lift weights?” The answer is, “Absolutely not!” Much of the difference in muscle mass between males and females is attributed to hormones, specifically, testosterone. On average, men produce ten times more testosterone than females. Unless you’re a female who is taking anabolic steroids or other male hormones, lifting weights will NOT make you look like a man! Also, there is a difference in muscle mass distribution between men and women, especially in the upper body. So it is important to remember that male hormones and muscle mass distribution are the two main reasons that men usually carry more muscle than woman. These are 2 of the main factors why men who strength-train look more “bulky” than females who strength-train.

Edit* I've purged some unrelated stuff from this thread (troll related) so that people don't have to read through a bunch of pontless stuff. So if you see some comments left you don't understand it's because of that. - Eric

kethnaab 05-30-2006 10:19 PM

my wife does a routine similar to the 5x5/WSB I posted.

worked like a charm for her too. she's a diesel lil' broad. :D

interesting information DeFranco states regarding the rapidness of deconditioning. My wife will attest to that one.

Sleeper 06-01-2006 12:40 PM

Females and weights
I think women can train similar to men. I am not an expert. But, I think a majority of women truly believe if they go heavy they will get big and bulky. I think allot of it has to do with society and pictures of some of the womens professional bodybuilders. The public in general has the perciption that if anyone trains heavy and hard they will automatically become the incredible Hulk male or female. This perciption is born from the common practice of generaliztion, in which we are all guilty. I think women are very much capable of training as intensly as men on not become enormous. I just believe because of their skelital structure and limited testosterone levels they are VERY suceptable to injury. I would make sure that women adhear to super strict form and and adrous program of stretching and warm ups.

verbatimreturned 06-02-2006 05:24 PM

Anuj does it because he likes to CONTRIBUTE to the forums. He doesn't come here to complain like you

P4noz 06-04-2006 07:22 AM

The way I see it, its like if anuj is writting is masters, or a phd. He looks up information that he finds interresting and post it with the reference. And, on the other side, he finds an article that has not been talk about and post it for discussion. And, with some great replys from almost all of the members.
M. Ali, if you dont like the topic, please don't bother. Or maybe you have a problem with this site and the way it's manage. It would be better if youd stop visiting this site, wait 5 years, come back,, and if your not mature enough (wich can happen) you will be told, I'm sure.

Now, to return to the main topic. Should females train differently than males? (DeFranco, Joe) In my opinion, they should not train differently, except of course for the weight lifted. I am finishing my bachelor in biology next year can't wait cause I hate it has hell, and with my few studies in hormones and shit, women can't grow big naturally. They can only get harder and ripped. Of course, muscle is muscle, they will add on, but not like men. The only possible natural way is good genetics


Originally Posted by Sleeper
I just believe because of their skelital structure and limited testosterone levels they are VERY suceptable to injury.

Sleeper, you are probably right for the thing about the damn society belief and the whole picture about female bodybuilding. Of course, women don't have a very very high level of testorerone. Since that on average, the adult male body produces about thirty times the amount of testosterone an adult female's body does. In the evolution of mankind, man were hunters and women stayed home and picked berriers and stuff. Technicaly, they are not used to hard training, but a men would die if he would have to have a baby. Now, being more susceptable to injury. I'm not sure about that.

_Wolf_ 06-04-2006 09:19 AM


Originally Posted by 0311
Huh?..Muhammad_ali, aren't you from bodybuilding.circus?

yes he sure as hell is...


Originally Posted by 0311
Whatever arguments you have with Anuj you can leave there..

see, the funny thing is, he's given me postitive reps out there....of course, they're worth nothing because he's got a rep of zero himself, but its the thought that matters isnt it..?

sorry ppl like him came over 0311.....but, hey: it aint my fault because i never requested him to come over....he must've liked the links i posted and decided to join...


Darkhorse 06-04-2006 09:31 AM

Don't appologize Anuj!! You continue to help make this place grow to where it is now..

Continue to do what you do, and let me deal with the rest. :smashfreakB:

_Wolf_ 06-04-2006 11:05 AM


Originally Posted by 0311
Don't appologize Anuj!! You continue to help make this place grow to where it is now..

Continue to do what you do, and let me deal with the rest. :smash:

will do sir.... :)


barbarianway 06-04-2006 06:57 PM

Re the article:

Most females do not understand that your muscles grow on calories. So if a female is 'bulking' up in the gym than I would be more interested in examining her nutrition plan than weight training plan.

In defense of the females who are scared of turning into a man...if a women works long and hard enough with genetics on her side than she can defintely do some scary stuff on her body...

I have a number of females clients who seriously do not want any more muscle on their body because they would look less feminine in there opinion. Most of the time I agree!

My point...women can usually achieve maintainence programs quicker than males bc there muscularity standards are not as high as ours and I agree with DeFranco's points!

Great article

ChinPieceDave667 06-05-2006 06:05 AM


Originally Posted by 0311
Shit, word is spreading...



Like I said, try to keep it constructive because I don't want to turn this place into a circus and the brunt of every other forums jokes..:biglaugh: No REPS are allowed! :D


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