Bodybuilding vs Strongman – How Are They Different?

  • By: Dave Moffat
  • Date: December 12, 2023
Bodybuilding vs Strongman

Weight training can be super confusing when you’re just starting out because there are so many different ways to do it.

There are lots of different workouts you can do, but it can be hard to tell which one is best for what you want to achieve.

Two types of workouts that are really popular are bodybuilding and strongman training.

Strongman training is all about getting as strong as you possibly can. Bodybuilding, on the other hand, is more about making your body look good and making sure your muscles grow in a balanced way.

This article is going to go into more detail about how to train for each of these goals. With some expert advice and insights from professionals, you’ll have everything you need to start on your journey to becoming a successful bodybuilder or a super strong strongman.

What Is Strongman?

Strongman is a unique strength sport that can be considered a hybrid, similar to how mixed martial arts is for combat sports.

As the name suggests, people who compete in strongman events have to be very strong. They also have to be in great shape to do well in this physically demanding challenge.

A strongman competition includes many events. These events include lifting heavy objects overhead, loading heavy objects, carrying heavy weights, and medleys that combine different strength-based tasks.

One interesting thing about this sport is that competitors may not know about some of the specific events until a few weeks before a competition. This forces them to be flexible and also shows off their natural strength and toughness.

What Is Bodybuilding?

Bodybuilding is a special kind of sport that needs a lot of commitment and self-control. In bodybuilding competitions, people are judged on how their muscles look. This includes how big and lean they are, how evenly their muscles are distributed, and how well they can pose.

The goal of bodybuilding is to make your body look as muscular as possible, with as little fat as you can manage and as much muscle as you can build.

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To train for bodybuilding, you need to do really intense workouts to build up your muscles. You also need to follow a strict diet to make sure you’re in the best shape you can be for competition day. If you work hard and stay consistent, you can be successful in bodybuilding, no matter what level you’re at.

Do Bodybuilders and Strongmen Exercise in Different Ways?

Bodybuilders and strongmen do different kinds of workouts because they have different goals.

Bodybuilders usually lift lighter weights a lot of times to help shape their muscles. Strongmen lift really heavy weights a few times to make themselves stronger overall.

They also take breaks differently. Bodybuilders take short breaks to keep their workouts intense. Strongmen rest more between exercises so they don’t get too worn out.

Because bodybuilders work out so hard and so often, they’re more likely to get hurt. Strongmen need to be careful too, because lifting really heavy weights can also lead to injuries.

So, these two types of athletes train in different ways to reach their own goals.

Are Strongmen Stronger Than Bodybuilders?

Strongmen and bodybuilders have different goals, which means their bodies need to change in different ways.

Strongmen want to show off how strong they are by lifting really big weights, which is something most people can’t do.

Bodybuilders, though, want to make their muscles bigger and more defined so they look good. Even though they get stronger as a side effect, that’s not their main goal.

Bodybuilders are stronger than most people. However, they train differently than strongmen. Strongmen aim to be as strong as possible.

Both strongmen and bodybuilders are impressive. However, they have different goals.

Will Strongman Training Help You Gain Muscle?

Strongman training is a special kind of workout that’s getting more popular for people who want to get really strong and big.

This kind of training helps you build “functional strength,” which means it focuses on exercising the big muscle groups you use every day.

Strongmen usually eat a lot more food to help them with their workouts and to look bigger. But it’s important to know that eating like this can make you gain body fat, not just muscle.

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If you just want to build muscle, you might want to do some strongman exercises but not eat as much as they do.

That way, you can have a good workout plan that helps you get stronger and build more muscle.


A lot of people don’t really understand bodybuilding and strongman sports. They might just think these athletes are just “big, muscly people.”

But in reality, these athletes work really hard to make their bodies stronger.

Getting that strong takes a lot of hard work, never giving up, and being really committed to their training.

Like any group of people, there are good and bad things people say about bodybuilders and strongmen.

These things might not be true. Still, it’s important to remember that these athletes show us what it means to be disciplined and determined. They don’t just have strong bodies, they have strong minds too.

Dave Moffat

Hi, I'm Dave Moffat the founder and Chief Editor of and certified International Personal Trainer and Certified Nutritionist. My passion has always been bodybuilding but with 15 years' experience in weight loss programs too, it's hard not to mention all that when you're working at your fitness level fullest (I hope). When Im not in the gym or spending time away from my family i often think about what advice would help others achieve theirs goals just like these inspired mine.