Blog, bodybuilding|fitness

Training Specialization in Winter by Frank Zane

Winter is the best time to take stock of your physique and ask yourself what needs the most improvement. Start with your symmetry. The question here “Is one side more developed than the other?” Symmetry or bilateral symmetry as it occurs in humans infers that one side of your body is a mirror image of the other. But it never is, and through sports or your occupation (check out the one big forearm on carpenters and tennis players) one side will be more developed and even shaped differently than the other. The best way to improve asymmetry is by using dumb-bells as much as possible. One arm at a time movements should be included in all biceps, triceps, deltoid, and lat training routines. Always do your first set with your weaker side and end your sets with your weaker side too. If your left biceps is not as peaked as your right, do 3 sets of the left and 2 sets for the right. This is bilateral symmetry and it is not the same as proportion.

Equal development between all body parts is what proportion is all about. Proportionate development means that no one body-part stands out. Saw a bodybuilder on Santa Monica beach one just standing there and what I noticed first was pecs, everything else receded into obscurity. In the 1970s, before the weight pen on Venice Beach got as big as it is currently, I’d watch guys train there and occasionally get a workout there myself. I saw guys train for hours doing only bench press and barbell curls. These were the most important muscles to them because it was what they could see easiest. And as these muscle masses got bigger and bigger that’s all everyone saw.

Most peoples fronts are more developed than their back sides because that’s what they are aware of. Not many people look in rear view mirrors much. This makes it much easier to judge a physique contest. It’s why Dorian Yates won the Olympia title so many times. Other competitors look as good as he did from the front, but his back, ham- strings, glutes, and calves blew every- one else away when viewed from the back.

Once you realize your weaker areas, start your workout with this body-part. You will pay more attention to it and put greater effort into getting a great pump in the area. Use the exercises that give you the best pump and include these in your winter workouts. Ease up on the exercise that work the body parts that are already well developed. You’ll get a better body.