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Strength vs Hypertrophy Training - Know The Difference




Having to choose between strength training and hypertrophy training totally relies on your weight training goals.

If you so desire an increase in muscle size, hypertrophy training is the best choice for you.

If you so desire an increase in muscle strength, strength training is the best choice for you.

Unraveled in this article are the pros and cons of strength training and hypertrophy training.


Weight Training

Weight training is a workout routine which involves moving objects that possess resistance, examples of these objects are;

  • Weight machines (stacks and pulleys)
  • Body weight (chin-ups and pushups)
  • Free weights (kettlebells, barbells and dumbbells)


These objects are moved in the manner of;

  • Particular exercise
  • Sets (reps cycles completed)
  • Reps (this is the number of times a particular movement is made)


Let’s say for example, you executed 10 consecutive pushups, took a break, did another 10, this is interpreted as 2 sets of 10 reps of pushups.

To achieve your desired fitness goals, the combination of exercise, equipment, sets and reps into your workout routine is vital.

Kicking off: Size and Strength

When an individual executes weight training, he or she builds both muscle mass and strength at the same time.

If one decides to up his or her weight training game, one will have to choose between strength training and hypertrophy training.


Strength Training vs. Hypertrophy Training

The equipment and exercises involved in strength training and hypertrophy training are pretty much the same. What typically differentiates both are:

Rest between sets: the number of times you set out to rest in order to allow your body recover from physical stress inflicted by the exercise.

Training volume: the number of reps and sets executed during an exercise.

Training intensity: this is the weight involved in an exercise.


More Sets and Reps in Hypertrophy Training

When executing hypertrophy training, you have to increase the volume of the training which means more reps and sets same time decreasing the training intensity. One to three minutes should be the rest time between sets when executing hypertrophy training.


Lesser Reps and Increased Intensity in Strength Training

When executing strength straining, the number of reps are reduced in a single set (otherwise known as exercise volume) same time increasing the exercise intensity by adding more or heavier weights. Three to five minutes should be the rest time between sets when executing strength training.


The Benefits That Comes With Strength Training

The benefits of strength training are numerous but a few are listed here:

It may help you decrease the symptoms that comes with chronic conditions, the likes of back pain, diabetes, arthritis, depression, obesity and heart disease.

Strength training will substitute body fat with lean muscle mass.

Enhance your metabolism.

Assist with weight management.


The Benefits That Comes With Hypertrophy Training

If large muscles looks aesthetically pleasing to you, then one of the benefits of hypertrophy training is aesthetics. The rest of the benefits includes:

Increase in power and strength over time.

Increase in body symmetry (muscular balance).

Aids with weight loss.


Risk To Take Note Of When Weightlifting

Irrespective of the many benefits associated with weightlifting, there are also some risks involved too and these risks are worth taking into consideration:

Injuries may be inevitable if weights are lifted too much or too fast.

Overuse injuries or tissue damage the likes of tendinitis and tendinosis may be inevitable as a result of not taking enough rest during workouts.

Extended movements far beyond an individual’s normal range can lead to injuries.

Avoid holding your breath while weightlifting as this can result in increase in blood pressure.


Final Words

Which of these trainings you think is better? Strength or hypertrophy training?

This question can only be answered by you and yourself alone. Try not to go to the extreme when making a decision as both are unique and offer similar risks and health benefits, your choice finally comes down to which you prefer.

If you seek bulky or bigger muscle mass, go for hypertrophy training. All you need to do is decrease the intensity of your training, reduce the rest periods between sets, and increase training volume.

If you seek increase in muscle strength, go for strength training. All you need to do is maximize the intensity of your training, rest period between sets and decrease the training volume.

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