What’s better than doing one exercise? Doing two! At the SAME TIME!
Did you know that it’s possible to get more done in your workout than you’re getting done right now? Incorporating Compound Exercise into your daily workout routine will get those fitness results you’re looking for faster and with less effort than you’re getting with other, more traditional and less exotic exercises.
Compound Exercises work by going after multiple muscle groups at the same time. Here’s an example. A squat is a Compound Exercise because it works the calves, the quads, and the glutes all at once. That’s why it’s such a powerhouse part of the workout, and why it’s a staple of so many weightlifters and athletes.
Don’t Stay Isolated
Isolation Exercises are the opposite of Compound Exercises. With Isolation Exercises, only one very small and very specific muscle is being worked. For example, a Bicep Curl only works the bicep, no other part of the body. It works that one very specific muscle really well, but it’s only working that one specific muscle. Isolation Exercises can be important parts of physical therapy and rehabilitation after an injury, but outside of those circumstances many fitness enthusiasts think that they’re a waste of time at the gym.
The best reason to do Compound Exercises is precisely because they save you time. When you’ve only got a limited amount of time to exercise, which is the case for pretty much everyone, with Compound Exercises you’ll work more muscles in a shorter amount of time.
These exercises are great because they:
- Improve muscle coordination
- Give you more flexibility
- Grow strength
- Get the heart pumping
- Burn more calories
These are just a few of the reasons that people swear by Compound Exercises. They are also just a lot of fun compared to simpler exercises! When you incorporate many muscle groups at once, you’re going to be more engaged.
One thing to remember is that, with Compound Exercises, the complexity means that form is even more important. You have to ensure proper form or else you’re risking injuring not only one muscle group, but several.
Compound with Every Round
Knowing that Compound Exercises are what you should be doing is one thing, incorporating them into your workout is another. Here are a couple of Compound Exercises that you can sink your teeth into the next time you workout.
- Walking Lunge
Standing with your feet shoulder-width, place your hands on your hips. Step forward with your right leg, tightening your upper leg muscles. Keep moving down until your left knee is almost touching the ground. Be sure to keep your torso straight, good posture is critical to this exercise. Now push up through the heel of your right foot and to raise your body up again, then step forward with your left foot and repeat the lunge.
Feet hip’s distance apart, step forward towards the barbell on the floor in front of you. Reach down, pushing your hips back. Tighten the core, the lats, and the knees. Push your heels into the floor. As you lift the bar up, think about pulling your hips forward as it passes your knees. Tighten the glutes when you pull to standing.
These are just two examples of Compound Exercises, there are hundreds more! Again, don’t forget to focus on form when performing these, so that you can stay safe while getting the workout that you’ve needed!