Most workout routines should be made up of 70% compound exercises and 30% isolated exercises. The reason for this, is unlike isolated exercises, compound exercises target multiple muscle groups, reducing not only the amount of time spent in the gym, but also they help strengthen other functional muscle groups that you otherwise don’t have the time to perform isolated exercises on. While compound exercises require more energy and contribute to an intense workout, isolated exercises in moderation can work in synergy to emphasis individual muscle growth while strengthening the body as a whole. Read on to learn more about the best compound exercises to help build a strong and toned body.
Squats are the most well-known compound exercise in the world. Its growth in popularity can be attributed from the many online memes, social posts and recommendations from fitness experts. You may already be familiar with the memes and social posts quoting the phase ‘do you even squat?’ or ‘she Squats’, but did you know that experts also believe that Squats are one of the best compound exercises that you can do. This top compound exercise targets quite a lot of muscles in the body, focusing mostly on your core and leg muscles, but also providing strain on the back, shoulders and arms. It is a great compound exercise which should be included in every muscle strengthening and toning training plan.
While Squats focus more on the lower part of the body such as your legs, Pushups instead focus on the upper part of the body. Working out your shoulders, pecks and arms, Pushups can be a top compound exercise to add to your training plan. No matter if you need to start on your knees to complete them, the range of muscle groups that it targets can save you a lot of time when compared to isolate exercises. If Pushups become too easy, try the bench press. It can mimic the movements involved in a pushup while giving you the option to add more intensity to the exercise by increasing the amount of weight being lifted.
While the word Deadlift may sound like something you should avoid, in actually fact this effective compound exercise should already be in your training plan. As it almost targets the whole body, starting from the floor you are using your legs, arms and shoulders to lift, as the weight shifts to your upper body, your arms, shoulders, neck, back and pecks fire up to complete this intense lift. Deadlift is one of the top compound exercises that needs to be added into your exercise rotation, but always remember when performing this exercise to keep proper form above everything else, including the amount of weight you are lifting. Following this simple rule will help avoid injuries in the future and maximize progress.
While we have shown you the top compound exercises that mostly target your legs, pecks and shoulders, Chin-ups on the other hand target your back, firing on your shoulders and arms for support during the lift. Chin-ups provide a good workout for your back muscles, which are often missed by other compound exercises. If you are unable to perform a Chin-up with your own body weight try to use the assisted chin-up machines at your gym. They will help you progressively build up strength in a similar way to conventional chin-ups.