Here’s why compound exercises are the secret to faster muscle gains

From increasing muscle size to burning more calories, here are 5 reasons why you need to opt for compound exercises this winter.

fitness Updated: Nov 21, 2017 13:53 IST
Abhinav Verma
Abhinav Verma
Hindustan Times
Compound Exercise,Benefit of Compound Exercises,Health and Fitness
Compound exercises target multiple muscle groups whereas isolation exercises targets a single muscle group. (Getty Images)

Most of us while working out tend to opt for a workout that involves training a single muscle in isolation. For example, we tend to train one body part a day, that is chest one day and back the other, and so on. While this kind of workout and schedule is perfect for someone who’s primary aim to sculpt his/her muscles and focus on aesthetics. However, it’s not ideal for someone whose target is to get fit and athletic, in a short span of time. This is where compound exercises come in; they can either involve single moves that include multiple muscle groups such as deadlift and lunges or two moves combined together to create one exercise like a should press combined with bicep curl. We got in touch with fitness experts Amaresh Ojha and Jinnie Gogia Chug, who explain why you need to opt for compound exercises rather than isolation exercises.

1)Burn calories at a fast rate

Exercises that involve more tissues than one single tissue, require more oxygen. Therefore, compound exercises tend to burn more calories than isolation exercises and build more muscle in the process.

2)Enhances intermuscular coordination

It improves the function and coordination of various muscles around the joints. For example, the gluteal complex (the hip) consists of three muscles - gluteus maximus, medius and minimus. Together, they are the ones responsible for controlling the motion of the hip. While you perform a compound exercise like a squat or deadlift, then it improves the coordination between gluteus maximus, medius and minimus in the hip.

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3) Provides cardiovascular benefit

The purpose of cardiovascular exercise is to strengthen the heart muscle so that it can pump blood efficiently to keep your muscles active and strong. For cardio, you either opt for running or cycling, which can reduce the size of the muscle. Compound exercises are done within a short span. Therefore, they provide the cardiovascular benefit without muscle loss.

4)Dynamically flexible

Flexibility doesn’t always mean standing in a static position. When you stretch, that is holding your muscle in a lengthened position, you reduce tension in your muscle but it reduces your neurologic activity (body’s ability to quickly respond), which is not recommended before any dynamic activity. Compound exercise improves your dynamic flexibility, which reduces muscles tension without hampering your neurologic activity.

5)Improves movement and posture

Ever wondered why body-builders move like robots? Isolated training reduces coordination between multiple muscle joints in your body. This leads to bad posture and rigidness in the body. Compound exercises lead to a better posture and better overall movement of the body.

5 compound exercises you need to try:

1.Dumbbell Thrusters


3.Renegade Rows

4.Dumbbell Deadlifts

5.Bent-Over Dumbbell Row

First Published: Nov 21, 2017 13:53 IST