It doesn’t seem to matter what kind of workouts you perform, there will always be someone who says they do tougher exercises and train harder. There is so much variety in the way guys work out these days…power lifters, bodybuilders, P90x, Cross fit etc.
Now this got me thinking …What are the manliest exercises and what makes them manly?
My first pick would have to be the burpee because it can be performed using no equipment and very little space. It’s also one of the most grueling and complete exercises working the majority of your body and drastically improving your cardio.
If you have ever heard the term “Prison Workout” they’re referring to doing burpees in there prison cell. In order to stay alive in prison, physical fitness is very important and the burpee is the perfect exercise.
As for my second pick I have to go with wide grip pull-ups. Pulling your body-weight up without any momentum or “kipping” is no easy task and when you add in the wide grip you’re calling on some serious strength. I have met plenty of big strong guys who can’t do more then a couple wide grip pull-ups.
Many different Military use them as one of their primary tests to demonstrate upper body strength in their soldiers (such as the United States Marine Corps). Next time you’re at the gym find the pull-up bar and extend your grip, start from a dead hang and see what you can do.
Easily one of the most badass exercises a man can perform. The deadlift arguably works more muscles than any other movement, it strengthens your posterior chain and in my opinion creates more usable strength then any of the other lifts.
I read a book called “Underground Secrets to faster running” where the author Barry Ross creates champion sprinters and jumpers using the deadlift. I would bet you haven’t met many strong dead lifters who can’t run fast and jump high, it’s relative strength.
Another one of the best exercises has to be the squat. It’s hated by everyone on some level, but at the same time they love it for what it can do for their body. If you have ever been on the verge of throwing up or nearly fell on your face getting out of bed after a leg day, you know what I’m talking about.
Squats, when done right will create growth all over the body, prevent injuries and increase sports performance just to name a few. If you want to try being a man skip the leg press and try a few sets of squats.
The barbell row isn’t going to be on many guy’s radar but in my opinion it’s one of the manliest exercises you can do. The bent over row will build up all your pulling muscles and when done properly will give you one hell of a back.
When done with proper form and enough weight this exercise can be a real head turner at any gym. Plenty of guys can bench 3 plates, but how many have you seen doing 3 plate rows? I would guess not too many.
In all honesty this list could go on well beyond 25 and nobody could really say those exercises didn’t belong there either. A few honorable mentions would have to be the bench press, barbell lunges, hill sprints and farmer’s walks.
The big question is: What’re your top 5 manliest exercises? Leave me a comment below, I would love to hear your opinion.