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Words and Patterns That Comprise Resistance Training Exercise Names

Nuzzo, James L.

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: March 2017 - Volume 31 - Issue 3 - p 826–830
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000965
Research Note

Abstract: Nuzzo, JL. Words and patterns that comprise resistance training exercise names. J Strength Cond Res 31(3): 826–830, 2017—Limited research exists on the language associated with resistance training. The purpose of this study was to identify the ways in which resistance training exercises are named. Names of 57 exercises were obtained from the National Strength and Conditioning Association's Exercise Technique Manual for Resistance Training. The analysis consisted of categorizing into themes all the words of the exercise names and then identifying naming patterns. Names of the 57 exercises were comprised 188 total words. Seven percent of the words described body position (e.g., “seated”), 1.1% described body position direction (e.g., “over”), 19.1% described a body part (e.g., “shoulder”), 1.1% were body part adjectives (“stiff”), 30.3% described action (e.g., “row”), 5.9% described action direction (e.g., “lateral”), 23.4% described equipment (e.g., “barbell”), 8% described equipment position (e.g., “incline”), and 4.3% were considered miscellaneous (e.g., “power”). Of the 57 exercise names, 22.8% contained a body position word, 3.5% contained a body position direction word, 54.4% contained a body part word, 3.5% contained a body part adjective word, 94.7% contained an action word, 19.3% contained an action direction word, 61.4% contained an equipment word, 26.3% contained an equipment position word, and 12.3% contained a miscellaneous word. These types of words were used inconsistently. Additionally, 35 different naming patterns were discovered among the 57 exercise names. Overall, the findings reveal that current strategies for naming exercises are inconsistent. The strength and conditioning field can use this information to move toward standardizing the way in which resistance training exercises are named.

School of Medical Sciences, University of New South Wales, Kensington, Australia

Address correspondence to James L. Nuzzo,

Copyright © 2017 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.