Guidelines for Developing a Resistance Training Program

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on StumbleUponShare on RedditPin on Pinterest

Bar Press

Before beginning any resistance training program, you must identify your unique goals, needs, and constraints. The following steps outline how to best approach resistance training so that your effort maximizes the outcomes you desire.


Resistance Training Program Guidelines

  1. Identify the primary goal of the resistance program. Are you looking to increase your strength, muscle size, muscle endurance or muscle tone? Are you simply trying to lose weight while maintaining lean body mass? If you are trying to lose weight, you will likely need to modify your diet in conjunction with adding additional exercise.
  2. Determine how much time you are willing to commit to a program. Specifically, determine how many times per week you can work out and how long you can work out each time. You do not need to spend countless hours in the gym to realize the benefits of resistance exercise. A simple 30-minute workout 3 times per week can provide amazing benefits. Knowing your time constraints will help you avoid overexerting yourself at the start of any program.
  3. Determine your access to equipment. If you work out at home and you only have a set of dumbbells, your program will need to utilize dumbbells and bodyweight exercises. If you work out at a gym, you will need to decide whether to use free weights, machines, or both.
  4. Using your defined goals, time constraints, and needs, select or develop a resistance exercise routine that fulfills your defined criteria (See EMG’s Workout Routines for Men or Designing Your Own Weight Training Program for specifics). EMG’s pre-designed workout routines are designed to meet your unique needs.


Here are the Resistance Exercise Recommendations Given by American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and American Heart Association (AHA) for 18-64 yr old Men

Population Group Frequency Intensity/No. Exercises
18-64 yr old men >2 nonconsecutive days 8 – 12 reps per set; 5 – 10 exercises for major muscle groups

EMG Exercise Homepage: Exercise for Men