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Beginners Guide to Weight Training

by | Mar 21, 2024 | News | 0 comments

Beginning a weightlifting journey can be both exciting and intimidating. However, with the right approach, lifting weights can transform your body, boost your health, and increase your confidence. Here’s our beginner’s guide to get you started on the right foot.

What is Weight Training?

Weight training is a type of strength training that uses different weights for resistance, including strength machines, free weights and body-weighted exercises with a TRX.

Why Weight Training is important?

Weight training is essential for everyone to complete as part of their weekly gym programme. Weight training can improve your muscle strength, muscle growth, bone density, physical appearance and increase confidence and mental health all while contributing to healthy weight loss.

How often should I weight train?

ACSM recommends individuals should weight train a minimum of 2 times per week. 

What muscles should I work in a beginners programme?

You need to exercise all major large muscle groups within your programme, beginning with compound exercises to start with. For example: Quadriceps and Hamstrings, Chest and Shoulders, Back and Core.

How many repetitions should I do?

This can vary depending on the results you want to achieve. 

For example: 

8-12 reps Strength Training (60-75% max) 

6-8 reps Building Muscle (80-90% max)

12-15 reps Strength and Conditioning Training (50-65% max)

Beginners Weight Training Programme Example 

Please consult your GP if you have any medical problems.

Warm up of your choice: 3-5 mins cardio-based warm up with dynamic movements.


Muscles worked: Quads and Hamstrings

Leg Extensions and Leg Curls – This can either be completed with resistance machines or free weights.

Alternative Home Workout

Kettlebell Front Squat – Quadriceps

Donkey Kick – Hamstrings and Glutes


Muscles worked: Lats and Rhomboids

Wide Hand Position Lat Pulldown

Alternative Home Workout

Bent Over Row (Using any weighted object) 


Muscles worked: Pectorals

Chest Press – This can be completed with resistance machines or free weights.

Alternative Home Workout

Press Ups


30 secs – 1 mins each exercise, rest 1 min and repeat 3 times

Mountain Climbers 


Russian Twist

Flutter Kicks

Superman hold 10-20 secs hold


Muscles worked: Deltoids

Shoulder Press – This can be completed with a resistance machine or free weights.

Alternative Home Home Workout

Shoulder Press (Using any weighted object at home for example tin of beans, milk carton, etc.)


Hamstring Stretch

Calf Stretch

Standing Quad Stretch

Shoulder Stretch

Seated Neck Release

Still unsure how to start your weight lifting journey?

Book in for a 1-1 personal training session with our Gym team by visiting www.ymcagym.co.uk or contact our North Shields branch here.

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