Dumbbells vs Barbells for martial arts training?

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by dragon619, Oct 26, 2012.

  1. dragon619

    dragon619 Valued Member

    Which is better for martial arts training. Dumbbells or Barbells?
  2. pascalywood

    pascalywood Valued Member

    They are both good but dumbells work your stabiliser muscles alot more.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2012
  3. Princess Haru

    Princess Haru Valued Member

    Neither, sandbag :p ...but seriously, it depends what exercise, I'd chose barbell for squats and deadlift, kettlebell for hip drive and dumbbells for some upper body strength
  4. holyheadjch

    holyheadjch Valued Member

    why not both? You'll get more weight on the bar with a barbell, and you'll work your stabilisers with dumbbells.
  5. Freeform

    Freeform Fully operational War-Pig Supporter

    I see what you mean, but surely a sweeping generalisation?

    For example, lunges or step ups with a barbell across the back vs. the same amount of weight in two dumbells (one in each hand). In this example you get more 'stablisation work' with the bar. Of course, we then argue that if you held the DBs overhead, you'd get more stabilisation work...

    They're both tools with merits and demerits. The only reason I could see to choose one over the other is if you were kitting out a home gym and had limited cash to start the project with.
  6. Kuma

    Kuma Lurking about

    You can't use one tool for every job as effectively as having a variety of tools at your disposal.
  7. Mitch

    Mitch Lord Mitch of MAP Admin

    I dunno, I've fixed most things with a big hammer. If I couldn't, a really big hammer meant I couldn't have fixed them with anything else anyway. :D

  8. Sketco

    Sketco Banned Banned

    Well there's always Frodo's body lotion and Vaseline to go with your big hammer :D

    ... Bazinga!

    *runs away*
  9. Jeffkins

    Jeffkins Sleuth Diplomacy

    I think if you had to pick one it would definitely be the barbell. The range of exercises is probably about as diverse as with dumbells, but there are some pretty crucial barbell exercises that become difficult to replicate with a barbell, while I believe the opposite isn't as true.

    You can do Oly movements, PL movements, use the barbell as a lever rotating from one end, a pretty good range of unilateral movements and you can generally use higher weights.
  10. Simon

    Simon Administrator Admin Supporter MAP 2017 Koyo Award

    I think it depends of what you have available and if you have a training partner.

    I used to do a majority of my training alone, so never had a spotter, therefore dumbells were the order of the day. It never did me any harm.

    I would have done my benches with a bar if a spotter had been available and combined them with DB flyes, I just often never had the chance.

    I think Kuma has it right, you need variation in your training. Bars, DB's, cables and bodyweight.
  11. Jeffkins

    Jeffkins Sleuth Diplomacy

    If you have practiced some good methods of failure, I think a barbell bench is actually going to tend to be safer than DB bench, which is relatively prone to causing shoulder injuries. Also it can be harder to get into position with heavier DBs.

    I don't think variation is neccasarily a good thing. It's nice to have the option, but you shouldn't just combine methods for the sake of it; just when the training calls for it. For instance currently I am using KBs, BB, and BW because they suit my needs currently. I am not going to just include other options just because I have access to them.
  12. Simon

    Simon Administrator Admin Supporter MAP 2017 Koyo Award

    I don't agree. The danger of pressing a heavy barbell during a bench press when training alone should seem obvious.

    I disagree on the DBs causing shoulder injuries. Do you have any studies backing this up?

    You are reading something into my post that is not there.

    Where did I mention adding exercises for the sake of it?
  13. Fish Of Doom

    Fish Of Doom Will : Mind : Motion Supporter

    benching can be done safely alone if safety bars are available or can be jury-rigged (for example with saw-horses, or putting the bench inside a power cage). additionally, collars can be done away with to let the bar tilt and dump the plates if necessary.

    that said, bench pressing sucks for martial arts :p (go team overhead press!)
  14. Jeffkins

    Jeffkins Sleuth Diplomacy

    Nope, pure anecdote. Anyway, that wouldn't something in a study so much as a statical review.

    I know that I am more likely to bust my shoulder off going near or to max on heavy DBs, than to fail my failure procedure on heavy bench.

    Edit: and my point with the bench was that good failure procedure mitigates a lot of the risk, just practice and prepare.

    I was mainly just clarifying, not implying you were advocating just chucking in random exercises, but:

    You don't need variation in your training to have the most effective training, depending on your goals and your current state in training. I don't if that list is just examples or if it is what you think is a good mix, but for me personally, a cable machine isn't very relevant to my training at the moment, and probably for a long time to come.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2012
  15. Jeffkins

    Jeffkins Sleuth Diplomacy

    I like the roll of shame if I don't have a rack, personally.

    I like push presses and the similar looking, but not so related jerk. Oh yiss.
  16. Simon

    Simon Administrator Admin Supporter MAP 2017 Koyo Award

    Any yet you are happy to say, "don't do this, because it'll lead to this".

    As someone who wants to offer advice you shoud realise that what works for you may not work for your client. Each case should be looked at on an individual basis.
    It is wrong to tell a client not to use dumbells because you use bars.
    This is what sets apart the instructor and coach.
  17. Fish Of Doom

    Fish Of Doom Will : Mind : Motion Supporter

    bent press :D
  18. Princess Haru

    Princess Haru Valued Member

    I dunno 'bout that. The action of breaking someone's grip is quite similar to a single arm DB bench press.

    When I started benching I had the same impression with Barbell Bench that it was more risky without a spotter but have learned to dump plates (personally I wouldn't clip anything, maybe a power clean) and heavy Dumbbell Bench puts a lot of pressure on the shoulder
  19. Jeffkins

    Jeffkins Sleuth Diplomacy

    Suicide bench press is more dangerous than regular grip. I have seen no studies to support this, so it is anecdotal from my point of view, yet I will still completely stick by this statement.

    This is the same with the DB and BB, just to a lesser extent.
  20. Kuma

    Kuma Lurking about

    I had the same philosophy for years. Unfortunately I had to change my ways once I met the wife.

    In good news, I haven't cleaned a window in almost 10 years.

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