Exercise Guide

Exercises form the building blocks of workouts and programs. Branch Fitness maintains a database of exercises and exercise versions. All exercises and exercise versions you create will remain private to your Branch Fitness account. As a premium member you have the ability to create new exercises and optionally publish exercises and exercise versions.

Exercises vs. Exercise Versions

What is the difference between an exercise and an exercise version? An exercise is exactly what you would think it is – Bench Press, Squat, Deadlift, Bicep Curls, Running – these are all exercises. Each exercise has a type based on how it is measured. For example, Bench Press would be primarily measured in sets, weight, and reps whereas running would be primarily measured in distance and time. Some exercises, such as pushups or dips, are primarily measured by sets and reps. Modifications, such as adding a weighted vest to pullups is something that would be added and explained in the context of a specific workout. Branch Fitness maintains a database of these exercises and their types, which form the basis for analytics and tracking.

Exercises also serve as “blueprints” for exercise versions. The exercise “Bench Press” may have several versions, each published by different fitness professionals. This gives you as a user several perspectives on each exercise to ensure that you perform the exercise in a manner best suited to reach your fitness goals.

When Should You Create a New Exercise?

It can be difficult to determine if you should create a new exercise, or version an existing exercise. For example, Bench Press (close grip) is different from Bench Press. Because Bench Press (close-grip) varies significantly from the traditional Bench Press and is tracked and analyzed differently, it is considered a separate exercise. Likewise, Shoulder Press (Barbell) and Shoulder Press (Dumbbell) are broken out into two different exercises.

An exercise like Bicep Curls (EZ-Bar) can be performed with a wide grip and narrow grip to work different muscle groups. However, this is still considered one exercise to ensure consistent analytics when tracking the exercise. One final example is Squats with a pause. Adding a five second pause to your squats will significantly change the dynamic of your workout and weight lifted. However, for the sake of consistency for all users, the pause variation does not make this a new exercise, but rather is a variation that you might add in the context of a workout. You could create a new exercise version for Squats to give further insight into this method.

The basic guidelines are that you should create an exercise when it is significantly different from any other exercises currently listed in the database, and it would be beneficial to track and analyze on its own. Please contact us with any questions – we will find a way to make this work for you.

Creating Exercises and Exercise Versions

When creating a new exercise, follow the prompts identify the exercise’s name, category, and type. When naming a new exercise, put any details in parentheses at the end of the exercise name wherever applicable. For example - “Bicep Curls (Dumbbell)”, “Chest Fly (Machine)”, or “Shoulder Press (Barbell)”. This helps all other users search alphabetically for an exercise.

If you create a new exercise, the Branch Fitness platform will automatically create the first version of that exercise and lead you through the wizard.

Publishing Exercises

Once your exercise version is published and approved, it will be available for all users in the community. Users can add your exercise version to their library and link to it in any workouts they create and/or publish. Once your exercise version is published, you will not have the ability to edit or delete it. You do retain the option to remove it from the community at any time, which prevents it from being published in the future.

Image Specifications

You may upload up to three exercise images for each exercise version. These images must match the subject matter of your exercise. You may also upload one background image to help accentuate your page.

The background image (if applicable) must meet the following specifications to be published:

Width: at least 1600px.
Height: 26% of width (pixels)
Maximum file size of 5 megabytes

Exercise images must meet the following specifications to be published:

Width: at least 600px.
Height: 70% of width (pixels)
Maximum file size of 5 megabytes