What Are Compound Exercises?
Today, I’m going to talk briefly about compound exercises. What are they? Why should you be doing them?
So, a compound exercise is basically an exercise that involves more than one muscle group with Deadlifts, Squats and Bench Press being the main 3, as opposed to an isolation exercise such as bicep curls or hamstring curls.
With a compound movement, multiple muscle groups are recruited in order to complete the exercise, meaning that the body is working harder to complete each rep. In the deadlift for example, the hamstrings, lower back, glutes and calves are used in order to execute the movement.
In this example of an isolation exercise however, the bicep curl is known as a single joint exercise, using only the elbow joint and the bicep as the isolated muscle.
Why should you be doing them you ask?
Lets start off with time. If you are someone who doesn’t have much spare time, you should definitely be using these movements in your workouts. Compound movements hit more muscles, meaning that you can do less exercises whilst still hitting a bunch of muscles an getting a great workout in, at the same time as reducing the amount of time spent in the gym. Handy right?
If you are looking to build strength and size, or you play sports, compound movements are great at doing this, they help to make you more powerful throughout more of the body and as they are a more functional movement they can be translated into sport or every day activity. Needing to pick up that heavy table you just bought from IKEA, DEADLIFT IT!!! Don’t get me wrong, isolation exercise have their place of course, but starting out with the movements that require more energy and effort is the way to go. If you are not looking to build size, don’t worry, just because you are doing these movements, you won’t instantly get bigger, there is much more that has to go into that in order for that to work, which i will cover at a later time.
If you want to learn more about these movements and how to perform them correctly with proper technique, my 1 to 1 Personal Training can do that, along with helping guide you through your nutrition and your training. Im here to help.