Compound Moves for Total Body Training

By Hayley Townsend |

Maximize your workout with compound moves that engage every muscle group.

Combining strength moves challenges your coordination while elevating your heart rate. It's an efficient way to activate your entire body in just a few minutes. This workout demonstration includes light hand weights. If you don't have weights at home, that's alright, you can still perform these moves without equipment.

As always, safety is key. If you have a chronic condition, an injury, or balance issues, talk to your doctor about how you can exercise safely.

Squat + Press

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold your weights by your sides. Push your hips back, bend your knees and sink toward the floor to come into a squat position. As you push yourself back to standing, pull your weights up to your shoulders, then push up over your head.

Repeat this squat with an overhead press 8-10 times.

Lunge with Biceps Curl

Step one foot back and keep the heel of your back foot lifted. Then, hold your weights at your sides and bend your knees to sink your back knee toward the floor. Try to make sure your front knee is aligned with your ankle as you lunge. Then, yourself push up and pull the weights up to your shoulders.

Repeat this lunge with biceps curls 8-10 times. Then, step the opposite leg back and repeat the moves 8-10 times.

Hip Abduction with Scapular Retraction

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Hold your weights in front of your hips, then turn your weights up so that your palms are facing the ceiling. Next, squeeze your shoulder blades together and stand tall. Anchor your left foot to the floor and shift your body weight to your left leg. Then, gently lift your right leg and extend out to the side. As you extend your right leg, push the weights forward. Then, as you step your right foot back to center, squeeze your shoulder blades and pull the weights back toward your hips.

Repeat this sequence 8-10 times on both sides of the body.

Dead Row

Stand with your feet apart at a comfortable distance. Then, hinge forward from the hips and squeeze your shoulder blades together to bring your elbows up and weights to your sides. Next, straighten your arms and return to standing.

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Repeat this move 8-10 times.

Compound exercises are a great way to train your muscles in a short amount time. For a longer workout, repeat this series of exercise 2-3 times, or try this 30-minute total-body strength workout.

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