Workouts · May 12, 2023

The 14 Key Muscle Groups You’ll Work In Litesport Strength

In Strength classes, our certified trainers will guide you through tried-and-true weight-lifting and strength exercises, ensuring correct form. With these at-home weight-based workouts, you’ll target 14 key muscle groups across your back, chest, shoulders, arms, glutes, core, and more. Strengthening your full body helps make everyday tasks easier, improves your sports performance, and reduces your risk of injury, among many other potential benefits

But what exactly are these 14 key muscle groups, why are they important, and what is their function in your body? Join us as we dive into the different muscle groups you’ll work on in your next Litesport Strength workout.

1. Pecs

Exercises include: 

  • Push up
  • Chest fly
  • Dumbbell bench press
  • Dips


The pectoral muscles are a group of large muscles located in your chest. These muscles are made up of two sections, called the pectoralis major and the pectoralis minor. The primary function of these muscles is to move the shoulder joint. But they also play a role in many other movements including arm flexion and extension as well as torso rotation. They also provide stability and support to the chest wall, helping to protect vital organs such as the heart and aiding in inhalation and exhalation. 

2. Shoulders

Exercises include:

  • Dumbbell shoulder press
  • Lateral raise
  • Front raise
  • Push up
  • Dumbbell rows


Your shoulders are one of the largest (and most complex) joints in your body. The muscles that make up this ball and socket joint are the deltoid, trapezius, supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres major, teres minor, and subscapularis. They attach to the humerus (upper arm) and scapula (shoulder blade), as well as other smaller bones in the area. These muscles work together to provide mobility at the shoulder joint. For example, they allow you to move your arms away from your body (abduction), rotate them inward or outward (internal/external rotation), and press them closer toward your body (adduction). This is essential for activities such as throwing, swimming, boxing, or writing, just to name a few.

3. Biceps

Exercises include:

  • Bicep curl
  • Pull-up
  • Chin-up
  • Concentration curl
  • Bent-over row


Biceps are the large muscles located in your upper arm, extending from the shoulder to just above the elbow. The bicep muscle consists of two heads—the short head and long head—which attach to different points on the scapula (shoulder blade) and humerus (upper arm bone). They’re responsible for flexing, or bending, the arm at the elbow joint and helping to rotate it. When both heads are engaged, they create a powerful contraction that helps to lift an object towards your body. Biceps also aid in stabilizing and supporting other joints during movement of the arms and hands, such as while doing push-ups or lifting a heavy object. 

4. Triceps

Exercises include:

  • Tricep dips
  • Overhead tricep extension
  • Diamond push-up
  • Dumbbell bench press

The triceps are a group of three muscles located on the back of your upper arm. They act in opposition to the biceps and work together to extend, or straighten, the elbow joint. The triceps are especially important in activities that require the arm to go from a bent position to an extended or straightened position like throwing a ball, swinging a punch, or doing a push-up. By strengthening and stretching your triceps you can improve your performance in sports such as tennis, boxing, or baseball, and reduce your risk of elbow joint injuries. Strong triceps can also help reduce fatigue in everyday tasks like carrying grocery bags or reaching for high shelves. 

5. Forearms

Exercises include:

  • Bicep curl
  • Hammer curl
  • Farmer’s walk
  • Pull-up
  • Reverse curl

The forearm is the lower section of your arm, starting from just below the elbow and extending to your wrist. It consists of two major compartments, an anterior (flexor) and posterior (extensor) compartment that contain twenty muscles. The primary function of these muscles is to provide support for movement and strength in the elbow, wrist, and hand joints. They’re essential to fine motor actions and complex movements of the arm, wrist, and fingers. From gripping objects to bearing weight, forearms are essential for moving freely and accurately with strength and stability. Along with aiding movement and strength, forearms also provide protection from injury by acting as a cushion between the elbow and wrist joints when bearing weight or pressure.

6. Abs

Exercises include:

  • Plank
  • Crunch
  • Sit-up
  • V-sit
  • Flutter kicks

The abdominal muscles are a group of muscles that make up your core. They provide vital support for activities such as walking, running, bending, twisting, boxing, jumping, and more. The main abdominal muscle groups include the rectus abdominis (six-pack), transversus abdominis (inner core), pyramidalis (pelvis), external obliques (waistline), and internal obliques (beneath the waistline). These muscles work together to provide stability for your spine, protect your vital organs from injury, and help maintain good balance, coordination, and posture. Not only that, but a strong core can help reduce lower back pain. 

7. Obliques

Exercises include:

  • Russian twist
  • Plank
  • Bicycle crunch
  • Leg raise

The obliques are part of your core muscle group. But we like to pay extra special attention to them in Litesport Strength classes because, in addition to protecting your organs, they’re also key to providing stability for the torso when performing activities such as bending, twisting, or rotating at the waist. You can find the oblique muscles on either side of your abdomen. They’re often referred to as the external and internal oblique muscles. The external obliques run in a vertical direction along the sides of the abdomen while the internal obliques run diagonally across them. Together, they form an X-like shape that’s key to proper alignment, posture, balance, and more.

8. Traps

Exercises include:

  • Deadlift
  • Bent-over row
  • Pushup
  • Shoulder shrug
  • Reverse fly

The trapezius (or traps) is a large trapezoid-shaped muscle in your back, running from the base of your skull to your lower thoracic vertebrae. The function of the trapezius muscle is mainly postural, helping to keep your spine upright while you’re standing. But the upper and lower traps also support movements like side bending, head rotation, raising and lowering your shoulders, and rotating your arms. 

9. Lats

Exercises include:

  • Pull-ups
  • Bent-over row
  • Deadlift
  • Dumbbell row
  • Push-up

The latissimus dorsi (or lats) is a large, flat muscle located in your middle and lower back that connects to your spine. It plays an important role in many movements of your arms, shoulders, and torso. Specifically, it helps extend and rotate the shoulder blade, as well as abduct (pulling in) or retract (pushing out) the arm. Additionally, it assists with extension motions of the back such as lifting objects from floor to waist level, and helps stabilize your body during certain activities such as running or swimming. Working this muscle will help build strength, improve your posture, reduce back pain, and enhance your general well-being. 

10. Lower Back

Exercises include:

  • Plank
  • Superman
  • Good mornings
  • Bird dog
  • Renegade row
Lower back

The lower back muscles are a group of muscles located in the lumbar region of your spine. These muscles include the multifidus, verse abdominis, latissimus dorsi, and erector spinae. The primary function of these muscles is to provide stability and support for the spine and torso during everyday movements such as bending, twisting, and reaching. They also assist in maintaining balance and posture by helping keep the spine upright while standing or walking. A strong back has many benefits from lifting heavy objects to performing everyday activities to preventing falls and other injuries. 

11. Glutes

Exercises include:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Hip thrusts
  • Glute bridges
  • Deadlift

The glutes are a group of three muscles located in the buttocks: the gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus. These muscles are primarily responsible for hip extension and abduction. This means they help with movements such as standing up from a seated position or stepping sideways. Additionally, these muscles provide stability to the hip joint, helping to maintain balance during activities such as running or walking. The glutes also play an important role in providing power during explosive activities like jumping and sprinting. 

12. Quads

Exercises include:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Step-up
  • Wall sit
  • Deadlift 

The quads are a group of five muscles located in your upper leg at the front of your thigh. These include the rectus femoris, vastus lateralis, vastus intermedius, vastus medialis, and tensor of the vastus intermedius. Their primary function is to extend or straighten the knee joint when contracting. In other words, they help you perform a variety of movements like standing upright, walking, running, jumping, or climbing up a flight of stairs. But they also aid in hip flexion, help you maintain better posture and balance, stabilize your knee, and absorb force from your movement.

13. Hamstrings

Exercises include:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Hamstring curls
  • Deadlift
  • Good mornings

The hamstrings are a group of three muscles located in the back of the thigh that include the biceps femoris, semitendinosus, and semimembranosus. These muscles originate at the pelvis and extend down to just below your knee joint. Their main function is to flex the knee joint while helping to extend the hip joint. This allows you to perform activities such as walking, running, jumping, and cycling. They also provide stability in your hips and legs, helping maintain your posture while standing or sitting for long periods. When these muscles become weak or tight due to overuse or lack of stretching, they can cause pain in both your knees and hips, decrease your mobility, and increase your risk of injury. 

14. Calves

Exercises include:

  • Calf raises
  • Hopping
  • Running
  • Walking

Your calves are a collection of muscles located at the backside of your lower legs. The two main muscles that make up the calf are the gastrocnemius and soleus. The gastrocnemius is the larger muscle of the two, stretching from just below the knee down to the ankle, while the soleus lies underneath it in a more horizontal position from mid-calf to the ankle. These muscles work together to create movement by pulling on tendons below your feet that help propel you forward when walking or running. They also play an important role in maintaining balance and stabilization during standing and dynamic movements. Without them, you wouldn’t be able to move effectively or efficiently from point A to point B. 

Start Strength Training With Litesport

In Litesport Strength, you’ll be grabbing your dumbbells and working all these muscle groups alongside our Litesport trainers. Throughout each class, they’ll coach you through correct form and technique on exercises like bicep curls, squats, overhead presses, push-ups, and more. You can also filter content by specific muscle groups to change the focus of each workout to better reach your goals. Start your free trial and start strengthening your full body today!


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  10. Jeno S.H., & Varacallo M. (2023). Anatomy, Back, Latissimus Dorsi. StatPearls Publishing. 
  11. Elzanie A., & Borger J. (2022). Anatomy, Bony Pelvis and Lower Limb, Gluteus Maximus Muscle. StatPearls Publishing. 
  12. Quad Muscles: Function and Anatomy. (2022, April 21). Cleveland Clinic. Retrieved May 1, 2023, from 
  13. Rodgers C.D., & Raja A. (2022). Anatomy, Bony Pelvis and Lower Limb, Hamstring Muscle. StatPearls Publishing. 
  14. Calf Muscle: Anatomy, Function and Common Conditions. (2021, August 5). Cleveland Clinic. Retrieved May 1, 2023, from

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