Split Or Full Body Training?

Which training style is most beneficial?

Split training or full body training? It’s a question that most bodybuilders ask themselves before hitting the weights hard. There are advocates for both and with good reason. Each type of training regimen has its own strengths and benefits. But like anything else, both types of workouts have their own drawbacks as well. It can make choosing between the two a real headache. Whether you’re a newbie scratching your head over which training method to choose or a someone more advanced who could never decide which type you prefer, the GI team is here to offer our account of which method is best for a bodybuilder.
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Full Body Training

First off, just what the hell is full body training? Well it doesn’t take a genius to figure that out. It’s a routine that has you targeting each major part of your body in a single workout. So what the hell is so great about that? Pay attention.
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Pro: Balanced Workout

One of the biggest benefits of doing full body training is that you can hit every muscle group in one workout. Your chest, abs, arms, back, and legs will begin to shape up all in one training session. This balanced workout will also be great for your strength gains as your body will have to adapt to using all your muscles to perform any given exercise.
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Con: Balanced workout

Because the workout is balanced you won’t be able to target specific muscles and focus completely on developing a certain body part.

Pro: Maximize Fat Loss

Another great thing about full body training is that the consistent exercise and movement required of full body training can help to burn fat with ease.
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Con: Makes it harder to build specific muscles

A drawback of this system is that since more emphasis is put on burning fat, gaining muscle in specific areas can prove to be difficult.
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Pro/Con: Missing a workout isn’t too bad

You’ll have worked all the muscle groups you wished to target, so missing a day won’t be the end of the world. The problem is that it can become a slippery slope. Getting into the habit of thinking you’re fine missing workouts is pretty horrible mindset to have.
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Consensus

Full body training is pretty awesome for beginners looking to decrease body fat while at the same time getting their body used to exercise.

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Split Training

This system has been the tried and true training method for many athletes, professional bodybuilders included. Splits allow you to focus on a specific body part each day rather than every body part. Trust us when we say this method can make a big difference to your muscle gains.
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Pro: Shaping the body

As mentioned above, splits are great for targeting specific muscle groups, which in turns means that an individual will be able to focus a lot more on shaping each individual muscle group.
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Con: Muscle/Strength Differential

You may look immensely strong from doing split training. You’ll be shredded and your muscles will be well defined, but you won’t be building functional strength like you do with full body training which activates all your muscles to work together, a key to building overall strength. But in reality it all depends on if you’re looking to sculpt or get stronger.

Pro: Very accessible

Another great thing about split training is that it makes working out functional. Lifting heavy is a must in order to grow, so making things easier on your body should be a focus. No sense in working your arms, legs, back, chest, and abs all in the same session, especially with heavy weights. You’d be dead the next time you try and hit the gym.
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Con: Missing a workout can be a nightmare

If you miss leg day, you better believe that you’re going to be kicking yourself. Unlike full body training where missing a day here and there isn’t horrible, splits require you workout a specific body part each day. Miss one day then you won’t be able to work that body part until the following week.
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Consensus

Split training is the perfect method for bodybuilders. It’s great for shaping muscle, much better than full body training could ever be.

So which training method is your preferred choice? Let us know in the comments below and sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook and Twitter.

Jonathan Salmon
Managing editor of Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. He has been writing about bodybuilding, combat sports, and strength sports for over 8 years. Check out his YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Sound Cloud for in-depth MMA analysis.