10 Compound Exercises to Make You Live Healthier

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Getting in shape and building a strong, healthy body should not always be complicated. If you add Compound Exercises to your workout routine, you will simply be jumping a few steps in one go toward the aim of a healthy and fit body. Before you start getting confused let’s understand what is Compound Exercises and list the Top 10 Compound Exercises that will help you get in shape quicker.

What are Compound Exercises?

Compound Exercises are exercises that work on several muscle groups and joints all at a time, compounding the effect better than an isolation exercise which usually focuses on one muscle group at a time. It’s like multitasking on various muscles. For example, instead of just moving your arms, a compound exercise might involve moving your arms, legs, and even your core altogether.

Since it focuses on muscle groups, It is great for building overall strength, saving time, and making your workouts more efficient. You think of compound exercises as the superheroes of your fitness routine.

Why You Should Do Compound Exercises? | How it is Better than Normal Exercise?

Compound Exercises comes with several benefits over Normal Exercises (Isolated Exercises). And Here are they

1. Compound Exercises Are More Efficient

Compound Exercises are more efficient as they target multiple muscle groups and joints all together in a single exercise. On the other side, Isolation Exercises or normal exercises target single muscle groups and joints.

This becomes very beneficial if you have a busy schedule. Busy schedule and less time for workout, compound exercises are good to go.

2. Burns More Calorie

As we know multiple muscle groups get involved in compound exercises so generally, it burns more calories than normal exercises.

But at this point you can probably ask,

Why does Compound Exercise burn more calories?

  1. It involves multiple muscles, muscle groups and joints as compared to Isolation exercises, Hence more calories are utilised.
  2. The muscle groups that are involved in compound exercises go through a wide range of motion which puts more stress and tension on each muscle compared to isolation exercises.
  3. Since muscle groups involved in the compound exercises had to go through more wear and tear, muscle recovering and expansion take more scoop of calories from the body.

Burning more calories helps in a weight loss regime as well as maintaining a proper weight balance along with a good diet.

3. Improves Functional Strength

Functional strength refers to the ability to perform daily task more effectively and injury free. In order to achieve this fitness, your primary muscles groups should be strong along with the secondary one that helps to keep joints steady and stable. Eventually decreasing the risk of cramps.

Compound Exercise works on core body part making it ready for every real-life activity such as climbing the stairs, picking the stuff from the ground, running, jogging, carrying heavy items etc.

4. Good for Muscle Growth

Any compound exercise that targets large muscle groups tends to release more of testosterone and growth hormones. These Hormone plays a major role in muscle growth and overall strength development.

5. Are Versatile

Compound Exercises are versatile to fit all the fitness levels. Whether you are at a beginning of your fitness journey or already an advance fitness enthusiast. Compound exercises has something to offer for everyone.

Checkout 10 Best Compound Exercises

1. Squat

The Squat is the king of compound exercises. It targets your Quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. Squat not only works on leg muscles, but it also engages your core for stability.

How to do Squat?

  1. Stand up straight with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Imagine getting ready to sit down in an invisible chair.
  2. Stretch your arms straight out in front of you, like you’re reaching for something. Or, if you prefer, you can keep your hands on your hips.
  3. Slowly bend your knees and push your hips back, just like you’re sitting down. Keep going until your thighs are like a little bit above the ground.
  4. Pause for a second, making sure your knees are in line with your toes. It’s like you’re taking a quick break in your invisible chair.
  5. Now, push through your heels (the back of your feet) and stand back up. Imagine reaching for the sky as you rise, just like you’re growing a little taller.
  6. Done! You Just completed one Squat Rep, Now Repeat as much as you can.

2. Deadlift

The Deadlift is a powerhouse exercise that engages your entire body. It primarily works your back, glutes, hamstrings, and core. Deadlifts not only build strength but also improve posture and prevent lower back pain.

How to do Deadlifts?

  1. Stand straight in front of the weight, and grab the barbell keeping them about the shoulder width apart.
  2. Straight your back, flat and ready for a lift. Avoid any slouching.
  3. Now, push through your heels, stand up straight, and lift the barbell. Feel the strength in your legs as you rise.
  4. As you reach the top, stand tall and squeeze your glutes. You’ve conquered the challenge.

3. Bench Press

When it comes to upper body strength, the bench press takes the lead. It primarily targets your chest, shoulders, and triceps. The bench press is a key player in building a strong, well-defined upper body.

How to do Bench Press?

  1. Find a comfy bench and lie down with your back flat against it
  2. Grab the barbell with both hands. Your grip should be a bit wider than your shoulders, like giving a high-five to the bar.
  3. Lower the barbell to your chest and push it upside.
  4. Then slowly press it back.

4. Overhead Press

The overhead press is a fantastic exercise for sculpting your shoulders and triceps. This exercise not only enhances shoulder strength but also improves stability and balance.

How to do Overhead Press?

  1. Grab a barbell with both hands, placing your hands a bit wider than your shoulders.
  2. Place the barbell at your shoulder level, stand firm and straight
  3. Now Press the bar to the sky with full strength, straight up overhead.
  4. Gently bring the bar back to the shoulder level and get back the control.
  5. Repeat the reps as much as possible.

5. Pull Up

Pull-ups are a classic bodyweight exercise that targets your upper back, shoulders, and arms. It is excellent for building functional strength and enhancing the aesthetics of your upper body.

How to do Pull ups?

  1. Hang from a bar with palms facing away, bit wider than shoulder-width apart.
  2. Pull your body upward until your chin is above the bar.
  3. Lower yourself back down with control and repeat the rep.

6. Barbell Row

The barbell row focuses on your upper back muscles, including the lats and rhomboids. Barbell rows contribute to a well-defined back and improve overall posture.

How to do Barbell Row?

  1. Bend at your hips and knees, maintaining a strong and proud posture.
  2. Grip the barbell with both hands, hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  3. Activate your back muscles by squeezing your shoulder blades together.
  4. Pull the barbell towards your chest, feel the strength in your back and arms as you row the barbell up.
  5. Lower the barbell back down with control, extending your arms fully.

7. Lunges

Lunges are fantastic for building leg strength and improving balance. Lunges target the quads, hamstrings, and glutes, making them a versatile lower-body exercise.

How to do Lunges?

  1. Stand straight, take a foot forward
  2. Bend your front knee at a 90-degree angle, and hovers your back knee above the ground.
  3. Lower your body down, keeping your back straight. Feel the stretch in your front thigh and the power in your back leg.
  4. Push through the heel of your front foot to rise back up, utilizing the strength in your legs.
  5. Repeat.

8. Dips

Dips are an effective compound exercise for targeting the triceps, chest, and shoulders. Dips contribute to upper body strength and definition.

How to do Dips?

  1. Stand in front of parallel bars
  2. Grab each bar with a firm grip, arms fully extended.
  3. Lower your body until your upper arms are parallel to the ground and legs above the ground.
  4. Then push back your body up with arms above the bar height.
  5. Repeat the reps as per your capacity.

9. Clean and Jerk

The clean and jerk is an Olympic weightlifting move that engages multiple muscle groups. It involves lifting the barbell from the ground to overhead in two distinct motions. This explosive exercise targets the legs, back, shoulders, and arms, making it a complete full-body workout.

How to do Clean and Jerk?

  1. Bend at your hips and knees, keeping your back straight
  2. Grip the barbell with hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  3. Lift the barbell with power, pulling it up towards your shoulders. Guide the bar close to your body as you rise
  4. Dip down slightly with your legs, Propel the barbell overhead with a powerful jerk, locking out your arms.
  5. Lower the barbell back down with control, completing the clean and jerk triumph.

10. Farmer’s Walk

The Farmers’ Walk is a simple yet effective compound exercise that targets grip strength, forearms, and core stability. This exercise not only builds strength but also enhances your ability to carry and stabilize heavy loads.

How to do Farmer’s Walk?

  1. Farmer’s Walk adventure by standing tall, feet hip-width apart. Imagine you’re a strong farmer ready to carry the weight of a bountiful harvest.
  2. Pick up the Dumbells in each hand like you are holding the handles of two overflowing baskets.
  3. Activate your core muscles and keep your back straight.
  4. Walk forward, each step carrying the weight.
  5. Keep your shoulders back and your gaze ahead.
  6. Walk for a particular distance and then gently lower the weight.

CONs of Compound Exercises?

  1. Not Ideal for Targeted Muscle (Focused Muscle) – Compound Exercises focuses on multiple muscle and muscle group, but if you want to target a specific muscle then Isolation Exercises are preferred over compound exercises.
  2. Equipments and Space Constraint – Compound Exercises comes in the range of exercises that suits a beginner as well as advance level weight lifter. But some compound exercises requires specific equipments without which you cannot perform them. Hence it leads to limitation with equipments and space to keep them.
  3. Needs more recovery time – Since Compound exercises engage multiple muscle and muscle groups, it can be more demanding over central nervous system and overall recovery.


Is it okay to do compound exercise everyday?

Compound Exercise offers several benefits but it would still not be the ideal to do it everyday, as it works on various muscle groups with high intensity. Thus performing compounding exercises everyday would not give much time for the muscles to recover increasing and develop.

What is the hardest compound exercise?

Defining one hardest compound exercise can be subjective as it depends on the person’s fitness level, strength, weakness etc. However Clean and Jerk, Snatch, Muscle Up, Front Lever, Pistol Squat, Handstand Push ups are considered as the hardest compound exercises.

Can you get big with only compound exercises?

Yes, You can definitely get big with only compound exercises, how if your aim is to develop a specific muscle then you should also add Isolation exercise in your regime.

What happens if you only do compound exercises?

If you only do compound exercises your overall body strength gets increased, you make bigger gains and you burn a lot of calories as well.

Should you start or end with compound exercises?

You should start with compound exercises as it will warm up and pump up various muscle groups all at once. While Isolation exercises in supplement to it can work on specific muscle and muscle group.

Should I do cardio or Compound Exercise first?

If you are looking to work on your endurance then you should first do cardio then compound exercise, Secondly If you are looking to build muscle strength then Compound Exercise will be first choice followed by Cardio.

Do Compound Exercise Increase Testosterone?

Yes, Performing Compound Exercise helps to release more Testosterone and growth hormone.

Should Skinny Guy do Compound Exercise?

Yes, If your aim is to develop muscle strength then you should really do compound exercise followed by Isolation exercise as the combination of both will help in increasing more of the muscle development and strength building.

Hope you liked this article. Don’t forget to check Wellness only on ConceptDive.

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