If I had to pick one weight training exercise per muscle group, what would I pick? Good question. This was asked to me the other day when I was talking to the guy that owns the gym I train in. Thought it would make a good post here. Here’s what exercise I’d do if I could only do one per muscle group:
Exercises I Would Pick:
Squat. This is not only the best leg exercise, but it’s the undisputed king of all exercises. Working almost every muscle group in the body, you can’t go wrong.
Dumbbell bench press. Using dumbbells hits the stabilizer muscle groups and allows for a longer range of range of motion to be used. It’s also better for preventing injuries because you can use a more natural range of motion. And finally, dumbbells make you weak side work just as hard as your strong side!
Pull ups. No exercise is better for building width in your back than pullups. Not enough people do them, most do pull downs but they are not nearly as effective.
Not a lot of choice really for calves, so I’d go with the good old standing calf raise.
Seated barbell press. Sitting down when pressing stops the tenancy for you to use your legs to help push the weight up when the going gets tough!
Incline bench dumbbell curl. I love this exercise. Your biceps are truly isolated and working independently. You can easily work in drop sets as well.
Dumbbell skullcrusher. Most people use a barbell, I use dumbbells. Again, you have the triceps working independently to each other and the dumbbells allow for a slightly longer range of motion over the barbell.
Heavy shrugs, with a 1-2 second pause at the top. You have to move some heavy weights to get those traps to grow!
Weight plate pinches. Yeah yeah, most people would be saying wrist curls. But nothing beats holding on to a heavy weight for a long as you can take your forearms burning!
Hanging leg raises. A very versatile ab exercise, you can do them slow, fast, weighted, twisting. If you do them in a Roman chair your abs are truly isolated. These are also good if you have lower back problems and your back hurts when doing situps/crunches.
So what do you think? Agree/disagree? Post up what you would have chosen in he comments below!