Bilateral versus unilateral movements.

First,some background on these terms.Bilateral exercises use both limbs to move a load,such as barbell squats,barbell bench press,and chin ups. if one limb pushes or pulls harder that the other,the load  will not move evenly. Unilateral exercises focus on each limb working independently of each other.This can be accomplished by either isolating one limb at a time or by using dumbbells or independent stack cables to push or pull with both limbs at the same time. Examples of these movements include exercises such as dumbbell shoulder presses,dumbbell bent-over rows, and lunges.In addition,when unilateral exercises are performed one limb at a time,they can be often elicit more core function due to the unbalanced state of the load. Examples of these type of unilateral exercises would be a one-arm dumbbell shoulder press or one-arm bent-over row.       Unilateral work enables to discover and address weaknesses and imbalances.These type of single-limb focusing can also greatly improve bilateral movement strength.These can prove to be very effective if you are seeking  improvement in exercises such as barbell squats,bench presses,and even pull-ups .To me,strength is not just the ability to bench press or squat a large amount of weight.Being strong also means having the muscular endurance that enables you to do body-weight exercises like dips,chin-ups,push-ups,or the balance and strength to complete a full one-leg pistol squat or hold a perfect core bridge for an extended period. This type of functional strength is very important for everyday activities and especially important for sports performance.By my definition of strength,the overweight guy who can bench-press 400 pounds yet not do a single chin-up is not strong at all; hi is a glaring example of what is wrong with many of today’s training philosophies.Agus

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