Sometimes not everything that is paired together in life works, chalk and cheese for example. Today I would like to talk about exercise selection, because I see many beginners trying to combine exercises that just don’t work.
This example is from someone I saw training the other night who was training chest and back, they have all the best intention but their selection of exercises was not optimal, the exercises in question were: Barbell Bench Press & Straight Arm Pull Down.
This might seem like a sensible choice, however both exercises will heavily hit your internal rotators and leave you more likely to injure yourself through bad form.
Knowing what exercises to combine might seem easy but it’s not.
Ideally as a beginner you will want to use two exercises that are polar opposites, this is because you will be looking to get maximal stimulus in a 45-60min time window.
*It is worth noting more experienced trainees will be able to link similar muscle group exercises because their body will be able to handle the overload.
Here are some examples that will help you:
Legs: Squats – Hamstring Curls
Upper Body: Bench Press – Seated Row Wide Grip-Overhand (Pronated for technical geeks)
Legs: Deadlift – Dumbbell Lunge
Upper Body: Shoulder Press – Pull Up or Lat Pull Down
If you want to understand more about how the body works I would suggest buying this book: The Strength Training Anatomy Workout:by Frederic Delavier. This book will give you a detailed breakdown of what muscles are targeted in each specific exercise, once you understand this you will be able to pair exercises for maximal results.