Full Body Training vs. Muscle Group Training

For many of us there is a lot of confusion when we first start training. It starts with choosing the clothes to wear and continues with choosing the right gym. One of the toughest decisions you might have to make is how you choose to train. There are many different training techniques and it can be overwhelming when deciding which to adopt into your routine. We are going to look at full body workouts versus “body split” routines.


“Full Body” Training



Balanced musculature

This training method mimics real life in a more balanced way. By training this way every muscle group gets trained during each session, leading to more balance in your progression.  This has the body working in more of a functional way in tune to how the body progresses naturally.

Calorie burn and hormone response

When the body is in motion and the muscles are being used, there is a hormone response by the body. Working the full body at one time can possibly aid the body in increasing the hormone response over single body part training. The calorie burn will be higher during a full body training session due to the entire body being included in the work. This inclusion increases how much stress and work the whole body has to do which increases energy expenditure and calorie burn.

Missed training

Unlike single body part training, if you miss a session you have to train that body part next or growth will be unbalanced. When training the full body if you miss a session then the body has already been fully trained.



Lack of Intensity

Training an individual part of the body can be done with intensity. To keep that intensity for a whole body workout can be difficult or near impossible.


When focusing on the whole body you can run the risk of overtraining. Overtraining would be when the body or body part is training to the point that it works against your training. This can happen frequently when training the whole body every session.


If you need training that focuses on your biceps to increase your strength in that particular area then full body training may not be for you. It is not a training system designed to focus on a body part or a group of body parts. This system focuses on the whole body without rather than singling out a particular body part.

Viewing the pros and cons of this system, full body training would work well for those who are more into cardio or the beginner who needs time to learn the machine and their body. Working this system to their advantage would give them the basis for growth.


“Split” Training




The split training system is easier to manage on a per workout basis. By having one or two body parts to train each session you can easily focus on each training session.


The split routine is superior when it comes to shaping and toning your body. The reason for the increased ability to shape or tone the body is due to being able to focus on an individual part of the body that is lacking. By training one body part (or two) a session you have the ability to increase or decrease the training on those lacking muscle groups.

Changing up

One of the key benefits to the single body part system is versatility. With so many body parts, you have the ability to change the way you work out each time you train. The ability to super set or change the amount of work or how you work each time is innate in this system.



Calorie Burn

Since the work is focused on a single group or body part the calorie burn is restricted to that area.


When working out different body parts each workout there is the chance that the body can become unbalanced as focus on one body part may be higher than others. This may increase the size of one muscle group over another.


You can never skip a workout as this will effectively throw off your goal. The system is dependent training each body part each week.


This system is more popularly designed for competitors and bodybuilders. The more advanced lifters know how to bring that intensity to each workout so that easily build each body part or increase the ones that need work.


With both systems there is merit and a chance to meet and exceed your goals. Learning what works best for your body and how to use each to your advantage is the most important thing. Focusing on what works best for you will help you in your future goals. Eat clean and train hard!

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