Published on 31 Jan 2020
Through your exercising and workouts, you may have heard of both compound and isolation exercises. These work the body in different ways and target different muscle groups at a time to help you reach and maintain your health and fitness goals. Here we explain the difference between the two and also give you examples of each.
These are exercises and movements that recruit a number of different muscle groups at once. This means that a compound exercise may work both the back and shoulder muscles at the same time for example when they are being completed. Compound exercises are great to work on your full body fitness due to this and are arguably quite challenging due to the effort your body must exert to complete them. Due to this, they are great to both build muscle all over your body and also to lose weight and tone up as the energy expanded to complete them can make for a great calorie burn. Examples of compound exercises would include barbell deadlifts, barbell squats and pull-ups.
The opposite to the above, isolation exercises (like the name suggest) only focuses on one or individual muscles at a time. They are ideal to focus on a particular area of the body you are looking to build up or target – such as the bicep or glute muscles for example. Isolation exercises also work well if you are looking to strengthen a particular part of your body and are often used in recovering from an injury before compound exercises can be completed again. Examples of isolation exercises would include ab crunches, hammer curls and the shoulder press.