Single limb workouts are not new, people have been using single arm and leg variants for many years.

However these kinds of exercises have been restricted to the elite performers, because most gyms would advise against such risky actions.

With the introduction of social media, we’re able to see many elite athletes training on a daily basis. This has encouraged people to copy what they see their favorite body icon doing when they themselves hit the gym.

Many of the largest gym associations and athletes have started to incorporate one-limb workouts into their training.

Just take a look at the video below of bodybuilder and fitness influencer Bradley Martyn performing a one arm dead-lift.

As you can see this isn’t easy. It suggests why it hasn’t really caught on as a global trend just yet, because most would see this as a way of encouraging injuries.

 

The Truth

The truth is, you’re obviously not going to try and lift your normal weight. Bradley is lifting weights that most men can’t lift with two hands but he’s an exception.

You can lower the weight and easily perform these one-limb exercises just as you would with two hands with no extra risk, but a lot more effort.

 

The Major Benefit

The motivation behind using free-weights for most people is in the knowledge that a lack of stability builds muscle.

On a machine, half of the work is carried out for you. The machine stabilizes the exercise and takes some of the effort away from your side.

Free-weights however force you to not only perform the exercise, but to also stop the weight from rocking, to stop yourself from toppling over and so on.

This increases the amount of muscles used, burns more calories, engages the stabilizing muscles and consequently increases the size of the main muscle.

With this logic, single limb exercises would be even more beneficial. Even though there’s a lack of stability with free-weights, you’re still able to equally distribute the weight on both sides.

Now imagine all of the weight being on one arm, or one leg, this is sure to activate more stabilizing muscles than ever before. Your abs would be one particular hotspot.

 

Lower Weight – Increased Strength

For most people the logical solution is to half the weight they normally lift when they use a single limb.

But this doesn’t usually work. The way in which the right and left side of the body support each other, provides a solid structure in which large forces and weights can be shifted.

On their own however they’re far weaker than you’d imagine. Think about how much you can lift on bench-press. Then half it. For most people the number they’re left with is certainly not a weight that they believe they could dumbbell chest press with for the same amount of reps.

The true number is around 30-40%. Most people can lift 30-40% of their two limb max with a single limb.

This means that you’ll be training with less weight, but you’ll be gaining far more strength. You’ll actually find that when you go back to two limb exercises, your one rep max is far greater.

 

What Types Of Exercises Can You Do?

The beauty of one limb exercises is that the amount of variants are in the hundreds.

80% of exercises can probably be altered and performed as single limb exercises. Here’s one example from bodybuilding.com that uses stabilizing in case you’d like to gradually make the transition..

lat exercises

 

Lazy Workouts & Shocking The Body

Many people go to the gym, but not a lot of people train. You’ve probably noticed that guy in your gym who’s been going for years, yet always seems to look the same.

This is because he’s sticking to what he knows. The standard bench-press, squats and curls and good, and if structured correctly with adequate progression, they can really get you some great results.

But too many people enjoy their comfort zone, they lift weights in a zombie like fashion, never really getting past a mild lactic acid build up and then leave.

The single limb workouts force you to get outside of your comfort zone and work on things like balance, co-ordination, flexibility, stabilizing muscles and more.

Shocking your body is one of the best things you can do, and single limb workouts truly make this happen.

If you’re looking for a way to shake your fitness routine up in 2017, then trying out some single limb variants and testing your limits once again could be a smart choice.

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Single limb workouts are not new, people have been using single arm and leg variants for many years.

However these kinds of exercises have been restricted to the elite performers, because most gyms would advise against such risky actions.

With the introduction of social media, we’re able to see many elite athletes training on a daily basis. This has encouraged people to copy what they see their favorite body icon doing when they themselves hit the gym.

Many of the largest gym associations and athletes have started to incorporate one-limb workouts into their training.

Just take a look at the video below of bodybuilder and fitness influencer Bradley Martyn performing a one arm dead-lift.

As you can see this isn’t easy. It suggests why it hasn’t really caught on as a global trend just yet, because most would see this as a way of encouraging injuries.

 

The Truth

The truth is, you’re obviously not going to try and lift your normal weight. Bradley is lifting weights that most men can’t lift with two hands but he’s an exception.

You can lower the weight and easily perform these one-limb exercises just as you would with two hands with no extra risk, but a lot more effort.

 

The Major Benefit

The motivation behind using free-weights for most people is in the knowledge that a lack of stability builds muscle.

On a machine, half of the work is carried out for you. The machine stabilizes the exercise and takes some of the effort away from your side.

Free-weights however force you to not only perform the exercise, but to also stop the weight from rocking, to stop yourself from toppling over and so on.

This increases the amount of muscles used, burns more calories, engages the stabilizing muscles and consequently increases the size of the main muscle.

With this logic, single limb exercises would be even more beneficial. Even though there’s a lack of stability with free-weights, you’re still able to equally distribute the weight on both sides.

Now imagine all of the weight being on one arm, or one leg, this is sure to activate more stabilizing muscles than ever before. Your abs would be one particular hotspot.

 

Lower Weight – Increased Strength

For most people the logical solution is to half the weight they normally lift when they use a single limb.

But this doesn’t usually work. The way in which the right and left side of the body support each other, provides a solid structure in which large forces and weights can be shifted.

On their own however they’re far weaker than you’d imagine. Think about how much you can lift on bench-press. Then half it. For most people the number they’re left with is certainly not a weight that they believe they could dumbbell chest press with for the same amount of reps.

The true number is around 30-40%. Most people can lift 30-40% of their two limb max with a single limb.

This means that you’ll be training with less weight, but you’ll be gaining far more strength. You’ll actually find that when you go back to two limb exercises, your one rep max is far greater.

 

What Types Of Exercises Can You Do?

The beauty of one limb exercises is that the amount of variants are in the hundreds.

80% of exercises can probably be altered and performed as single limb exercises. Here’s one example from bodybuilding.com that uses stabilizing in case you’d like to gradually make the transition..

lat exercises

 

Lazy Workouts & Shocking The Body

Many people go to the gym, but not a lot of people train. You’ve probably noticed that guy in your gym who’s been going for years, yet always seems to look the same.

This is because he’s sticking to what he knows. The standard bench-press, squats and curls and good, and if structured correctly with adequate progression, they can really get you some great results.

But too many people enjoy their comfort zone, they lift weights in a zombie like fashion, never really getting past a mild lactic acid build up and then leave.

The single limb workouts force you to get outside of your comfort zone and work on things like balance, co-ordination, flexibility, stabilizing muscles and more.

Shocking your body is one of the best things you can do, and single limb workouts truly make this happen.

If you’re looking for a way to shake your fitness routine up in 2017, then trying out some single limb variants and testing your limits once again could be a smart choice.

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