Compound Exercises vs. Isolation Exercises. What Is The Difference?
When it comes to lifting weights, building muscle and getting stronger you will notice that pretty much every single exercise you do will fall into one of two basic categories.
They will be considered a compound lift/movement or an isolation lift/movement.
Knowing the difference in both, and now to utilize both variations is very important to making gains and not wasting your time and energy in the gym.
Before we get into the details about how to use both these movements for maximal results let me first explain the basics of Compound vs. Isolation exercises.
Compound Exercise : Any exercise that uses more than one muscle in the movement.
Isolation Exercise : Any exercise that isolates only one muscle or movement.
That is about as simple a definition as I can give.
However when it comes to the human body things are not always that simple, more on this in a few minutes but first let’s look at some exercises so you can get an understanding of Compound vs. Isolation Exercises.
Squat – Compound Movement
Deadlift – Compound Movement
Bench Press – Compound Movement
Pull Ups – Compound Movement
Lunge – Compound Movement
Preacher Curl – Isolation Movement
Tricep Push Down – Isolation Movement
Standing Calf Raise – Isolation Movement
Lying Hamstring Curl – Isolation Movement
Now that we have a basic understanding of both types of exercise let’s talk about the important stuff. How to use these two movements to build muscle and get stronger
If you are trying to build muscle and strength you always want to start with a solid foundation.
When it comes to building a foundation you want to start with compound movements first.
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Rob King is a Competitive PowerLifter, Coach and Writer.