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Weight training is a type of strength training that uses weights rather than elastic or muscular resistance to increase strength. Endurance training is associated with aerobic exercise while flexibility training is associated with stretching exercise like yoga or pilates. Weight training is often used synonymously of strength training but is actually a specific type within the more inclusive category.
The basic principles of weight training are essentially identical to those of strength training, and involve a manipulation of the number of repetitions, sets, tempo, exercise types, and weight moved to cause desired increases in strength, endurance, size, and shape. The specific combinations of reps, sets, exercises, and weights depends on the aims of the individual performing the exercise.
In addition to the basic principles of strength training, a further consideration added by weight training is the equipment used. Types of equipment include barbells, dumbbells, pulleys and stacks in the form of weight machines, and the body's own weight in the case of chin-ups and pushups. Different types of weights will give different types of resistance, and often the same absolute weight can have different relative weights depending on the type of equipment used. For example, lifting 10 kilograms using a dumbbell requires significantly more force than moving 10 kilograms on a weight stack due to the use of pulleys.
Weight training also requires the use of good form, performing the movements with the appropriate muscle group, and not transferring the weight to different body parts in order to move greater weight. Failure to use good form during a training set can result in injury or a failure to meet training goals. This will occur because the desired muscle group is not challenged sufficiently, the threshold of overload is never reached and the muscle does not gain in strength.
Weight training differs from bodybuilding and powerlifting which are sports rather than forms of exercise. Weight training, however, is often part of the athlete's training regimen.