Our next training block is soon to be upon us at WCFM, and with it a new combination of movements to progress! Among them will be the dumbbell lunge. Single limb (or unilateral) exercises are a great addition to any exercise program. Perhaps you feel they are tedious and exhausting, but as is usually the case, these are the reasons why these movements are so effective. Here are some of the benefits:
Easily identify weaknesses. Any discrepancies in strength or coordination between opposing limbs will quickly become apparent once they are isolated from one another. Having a weakness to overcome gives our training purpose and a positive outcome to look forward to.
Improved stability and unilateral strength. Once a weakness has been identified, there is no need to sit down and craft a personalized plan. Simply focusing on proper execution of the movement and progressing in weight or reps over time will help address any previously existing imbalances. Just follow the program!
Fortify your compound exercises. Strengthening both sides individually will result in increased output once they are required to work together. For example, a person may shift their weight to one side more than the other when squatting heavier loads. Developing strength and coordination with a single leg step down will result in a stronger, more balanced squat.
Reduced pain. Mild symptoms of pain, such as nagging tweaks or aches, can oftentimes be improved by developing unilateral strength and coordination. Common trouble areas include the knees, hips, lower back, and shoulders.
If you are interested in increased strength and reduced pain, then unilateral exercises are for you!
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