Beginner's Guide: 6 Basic Compound Lifts, and How to do Them

[size=x-small]http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=118920551[/size]

The core of any good exercise program should be built around the 6 basic compound lifts. These are the basis of bobybuilding, the cornerstone of hypertrophy, the mecca of mass, the.... well, you get the idea. <br>
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<b>Must</b> you do all of these? No. Nothing is a "must". But instead of wasting countless hours doing 45 degree back hyper-extensions, concentration curls, and pec-dec flyes, you should try these first. If you do these as the core of your workout you can, and you will, get bigger and stronger - faster. <br>
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Now, without further ado, let's meet these monsters of muscle....<br>
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<b>1. Squats:</b><br>
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Most people begin with the Back Squat, and therefore that's what we'll focus on here. Start with this one, and then later you can move on to Front Squats, Hack Squats, Box Squats, one-legged hungarian death squats, or whatever floats your boat.<br>
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The Back Squat: <br>
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- Your lower back should maintain a natural curve inward throughout the movement. Do not "bend over" and arch your back or you risk a back injury. <br>
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- Go as deep as your flexibility allows. Ideally, you will squat until your thighs are below parallel to the floor. But if you lack the proper degree of flexibility, going deeper causes your hips to tuck in under you and your back to round. If this is the case, then go as deep as you can while maintaining a proper curve to your spine. Work on hip flexibility to allow you to squat progressively deeper. <br>
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- Good form is key. Do not use a weight which you cannot handle with proper form. If your form is compromised, drop the weight until you can maintain good form.<br>
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- Your knees should point the same direction as your toes throughout the entire movement.<br>
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- Have someone watch you squat and critique your form until you are sure you are doing this exercise correctly. There are many threads on bb.com about squatting - so do your research.<br>
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For more information: <br>
<a href="http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/Quadriceps/BBSquat.html"; target="_blank">http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/...s/BBSquat.html</a><br>;
<a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpost.php?p=13263177&postcount=5"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpo...77&postcount=5</a>; <-- Read this!<br>
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<b>2. Deadlift:</b><br>
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Like Squats, there are many forms of the deadlift. The basic form is presented here, but there are also Stiff-Legged Deadlifts, Romanian Deadlifts, and Casket Deadlifts for your uncle Joe (just kidding on the last one).<br>
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First: Read the Sticky! <a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=112127931"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=112127931</a><br>;
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The Basic Deadlift:<br>
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Tips:<br>
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- Like the squat, make sure you maintain a natural curve in your back. Do not bend over and round your back or your risk an injury.<br>
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- The barbell should remain close to your legs through the entire movement. You don't have to drag it along your shins like a cheese-grater (unless you want the street cred), but it should remain in light contact over very near your legs.<br>
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- For heavy weights it is very helpful to use an overhand-underhand grip on the barbell. (One hand grips overhand, one hand grips underhand). This will help keep the barbell from rolling out of your hands. If you are a wimp, then feel free to use straps. <img src="http://assets.bodybuilding.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif"; alt="" title="Big Grin" class="inlineimg" border="0"><br>
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For More Information: <br>
<a href="http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/ErectorSpinae/BBDeadlift.html"; target="_blank">http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/...BDeadlift.html</a><br>;
<a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpost.php?p=13263219&postcount=11"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpo...9&postcount=11</a>; <-- Read this!<br>
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<b>3. Bench Press:</b><br>
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The bench press is everyone's favorite exercise. Those who claim it's not are lying. Do this one, if for no other reason than to be able to answer the perennial gym favorite: "How much do you bench?". FYI, I think damn near everyone does this exercise "incorrectly" to some degree. I know I do. <br>
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The Bench Press:<br>
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Basic Form:<br>
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More Advanced Tutorial:<br>
<object height="300" width="380"><param name="movie" value=" src=" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" height="300" width="380"></object><br>
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Tips:<br>
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- Use a weight you can control. Do not "bounce" the bar off your chest.<br>
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- Do not allow your elbows to flare outward so that your upper arms are perpendicular to your body. They should be "tucked in" toward your body at an angle. <br>
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- Do some research on this one too, since it's easy to do this exercise incorrectly. Generally, you'll be fine, but some form issues can cause RC (rotator cuff) injuries, especially at higher weights.<br>
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- You can also substitute Dumbbell bench presses. These allow you to work your stabilizers, and allow you more freedom to move your arms in a natural path - use these especially if you have shoulder issues with barbell bench pressing.<br>
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For More Information: <br>
<a href="http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/PectoralSternal/BBBenchPress.html"; target="_blank">http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/...enchPress.html</a><br>;
<a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpost.php?p=13263207&postcount=9"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpo...07&postcount=9</a>; <-- Read this!<br>
<br>
<br>
<b>4. Rows</b><br>
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To fully work your back, you need a mass-building rowing exercise. Bent-Over Barbell Rows, T-Bar Rows, or Dumbell Rows are staples.<br>
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Bent-Over Barbell Row:<br>
<object height="300" width="380"><param name="movie" value=" src=" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" height="300" width="380"></object><br>
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T-Bar Row:<br>
<object height="300" width="380"><param name="movie" value=" src=" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" height="300" width="380"></object><br>
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Dumbell Row:<br>
<a href="http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/BackGeneral/DBBentOverRow.html"; target="_blank">http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/...ntOverRow.html</a><br>;
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Tips:<br>
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- For most rowing exercises, it helps to visualize your hands as hooks and think about pulling your arm backward from your elbow. You want to minimize the involvement of the bicep, and instead concentrate on contracting your back. <br>
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- Generally speaking, think of pulling the weight upward to your hip joint or lower abdomen. In the basic form of the exercises you aren't pulling to your chest. <br>
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For More Information:<br>
<a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpost.php?p=13263259&postcount=15"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpo...9&postcount=15</a>; <-- Read this!<br>
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<br>
<br>
<b>5. Pullups & Chinups:</b><br>
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Pullups (palms facing away) and Chinups (palms facing toward you), are also good mass-building exercises for your back. We all know how to do these from grade school (along with the Flex-arm-hang, right?) <br>
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There's not a lot of mystery here. Grab a bar and pull yourself up. If you can't do a pullup/chinup (or can't do many), place a chair under the bar and put one foot on the chair. As you pull yourself up, use your leg to assist you. When you reach the top, stop assisting yourself and lower yourself using just your arms.<br>
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Think about bringing the bar to your chest (not just eye level), and lean back slightly at the top of the movement. Don't swing your body, or "kip" yourself up with your hips. Use slow, controlled movements.<br>
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Once these become easy to do with just body weight, you can do them weighted with a dip belt, or with a dumbell between your feet. (Or small children hanging from you). <br>
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For More Information: <br>
<a href="http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/LatissimusDorsi/WtPullup.html"; target="_blank">http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/.../WtPullup.html</a><br>;
<a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpost.php?p=13263289&postcount=19"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showpo...9&postcount=19</a>; <-- Read this!<br>
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<b>6. Military Press / Overhead Press:</b><br>
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The Overhead barbell press or Military Press (the Military Press is a specific version of an Overhead press) are usually referred to interchangeably. The Overhead press can be done seated or standing - your preference. <br>
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The Overhead Press:<br>
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Basic Form:<br>
<a href="http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/DeltoidAnterior/BBMilitaryPress.html"; target="_blank">http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/...taryPress.html</a><br>;
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Further Instruction:<br>
<object height="300" width="380"><param name="movie" value=" src=" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" height="300" width="380"></object><br>
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Tips:<br>
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- Overhead presses can be done standing, seated, with a barbell, or with Dumbells. There are numerous variants including Arnold presses.<br>
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- Keep the weight directly over the shoulders. As you drive the weight upward for a standing overhead press, think about moving your upper body forward under the weight.<br>
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- I like to place one foot forward and one rearward instead of just having them side by side. I find this helps with balance.<br>
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- Like everything else, keep a natural curve in your back.<br>
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<b>Notes & Final Thoughts:</b><br>
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1. The videos I chose are ones I could find without wasting my entire day. I'm sure there are better ones, but these should give the basic idea of proper form. If you have a better one, please feel free to post it. <br>
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2. This is meant to be a guide for beginners', outlining the basic lifts, how to do them, and general form tips as a <i>starting point</i>. It's not an academic dissertation on the most advanced forms and techniques. If you have your own tips, videos, or reference material on any of these exercises, feel free to post them.<br>
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3. If you want to know which muscles each exercise works, follow the <a href="http://www.exrx.net"; target="_blank">www.exrx.net</a> link.<br>
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4. There is a great degree of variation and subtlety that can be incorporated into each of these lifts. However, I would suggest learning the basic form first - and correctly. <br>
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5. Start with a weight you know you can handle, and progress upward steadily workout to workout. There is no need to "ego" lift and just throw as much weight on the bar as you can handle. This often leads to form errors and injuries.<br>
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<b>Good starting programs which incorporate these lifts:</b><br>
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All Pro's Beginners' Routine: <a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=4195843"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=4195843</a><br>;
<br>
Rippetoe Starting Strength: <a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=998224"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=998224</a><br>;
<br>
Madcows: <a href="http://madcow.hostzi.com/5x5_Program/Linear_5x5.htm"; target="_blank">http://madcow.hostzi.com/5x5_Program/Linear_5x5.htm</a><br>;
<br>
Also see this thread: <a href="http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=115643271"; target="_blank">http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=115643271</a><br>;
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^ If you are serious about learning barbell training, read these threads ^<br>
<br>
<br>
<b>Acknowledgments:</b> Thanks to AllPro, N@tural1, kethnaab, Kiknskreem, and others who have taken time to compile information referenced here.
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Comments

  • miguelmiguel Posts: 895
    thanks boss.
  • Great post! Thank you Boss!
  • 19PreDaTor6819PreDaTor68 Posts: 777C-Class
    NICCCEEE!!! ok na ok to boss salamat!!
  • ako lang ba dito hindi favorite yung bench press(for the reason na mababa pa bench ko! haha.)? fave ko pendlay rows eh, ako lang kasi nag-gaganun sa gym sa amin eh. :))
  • miguelmiguel Posts: 895
    masaya magbench! yung deadlift nakakaiyak :angry:
  • boss_jboss_j Posts: 1,243B-Class
    ^ Ako naman i don't do yung flat version ng BP mas gusto ko yung decline at incline naman using dumbells plus pala yung dips solve nako jan for chest WO. Decline,Incline,Dips
  • ako ginagawa ko lhat perr ang fave ko jan e, incline. specially reverse grip. :sport:
  • jcumali008jcumali008 Posts: 1,090C-Class
    deadlift is my favorite..haha^informative...
  • allen101allen101 Posts: 5,102
    Nako sabi kay red nung trainer sa gym mali daw yang Deadlift na yan.. parang squat daw yang ganyan e..
  • redred Posts: 753
    ^ haha

    the story is ...im doing the proper basic deadlift ... galing sa natutunan ko dito at sa turo din ni sir allen ...

    then one day ... I'm doing my final set and for the first time, nag try ako mag 140 (sorry beginner)..
    after the set... tinanong ko yung instructor kung tama pa ba yung form ng DL since nabigatan na ako.

    then sumagot siya ... " Sir, ganito ang DL, parang squat po yung ginagawa niyo " then I was like ..BOOM! pinang hinaan ako ng loob .. sa utak ko ..ilang beses ko na siya ginagawa ...mali pala!

    Buti na lang na explain ni allen mahmen kung ano ba talaga ang tama.

    Di bale, di na ako mag tatanong sa kanya next time! nawala motivation ko nun for a while!

    :S
  • jcumali008jcumali008 Posts: 1,090C-Class
    red wrote:
    ^ haha

    the story is ...im doing the proper basic deadlift ... galing sa natutunan ko dito at sa turo din ni sir allen ...

    then one day ... I'm doing my final set and for the first time, nag try ako mag 140 (sorry beginner)..
    after the set... tinanong ko yung instructor kung tama pa ba yung form ng DL since nabigatan na ako.

    then sumagot siya ... " Sir, ganito ang DL, parang squat po yung ginagawa niyo " then I was like ..BOOM! pinang hinaan ako ng loob .. sa utak ko ..ilang beses ko na siya ginagawa ...mali pala!

    Buti na lang na explain ni allen mahmen kung ano ba talaga ang tama.

    Di bale, di na ako mag tatanong sa kanya next time! nawala motivation ko nun for a while!

    :S

    yung ibang PT turo nila di ibaba sa floor yung barbell which most of the member here in PBB disagree.. sabi ng ibang PT para daw di mawala ang tension sa lower back.. pero ako di ko din sinusunod yun..haha kasi ang alam ko talaga is binababa sa floor and yun ang ginagawa ng mga malalaking master dito.. kaya i'll go with it..:)
  • redred Posts: 753
    jcumali008 wrote:
    red wrote:
    ^ haha

    the story is ...im doing the proper basic deadlift ... galing sa natutunan ko dito at sa turo din ni sir allen ...

    then one day ... I'm doing my final set and for the first time, nag try ako mag 140 (sorry beginner)..
    after the set... tinanong ko yung instructor kung tama pa ba yung form ng DL since nabigatan na ako.

    then sumagot siya ... " Sir, ganito ang DL, parang squat po yung ginagawa niyo " then I was like ..BOOM! pinang hinaan ako ng loob .. sa utak ko ..ilang beses ko na siya ginagawa ...mali pala!

    Buti na lang na explain ni allen mahmen kung ano ba talaga ang tama.

    Di bale, di na ako mag tatanong sa kanya next time! nawala motivation ko nun for a while!

    :S

    yung ibang PT turo nila di ibaba sa floor yung barbell which most of the member here in PBB disagree.. sabi ng ibang PT para daw di mawala ang tension sa lower back.. pero ako di ko din sinusunod yun..haha kasi ang alam ko talaga is binababa sa floor and yun ang ginagawa ng mga malalaking master dito.. kaya i'll go with it..:)

    oo nga men eh ...medyo badtrip din .. nung chineck ko yung sinasabi nung PT, ang nakita ko is Stiff-Legged Deadlifts pala yun ... kaso ang mali niya lang is nung sinabi niya na mali yung ginagawa ko at parang squat na daw yun.

    di bale, this week, dedma mode na hehe

    :)
  • jaredstaanajaredstaana Posts: 202B-Class
    ty boss j....madaming matututunan dito :flex:

    Ang lalaking may siopao sa shorts

  • Guys help, pag nag squa squats ako, kumukuba ung likod ko. help.
  • @jules contract mo shoulder blades,chest out, dont look down, shoulder width stance or narrow for different target area of thigh, inhale goin down,exhale at top. or much better nood ka sa utube for proper technique mahirap pag basa lang baka matagal mo makuha. Goodluck
  • DSmallDivideDSmallDivide Posts: 4,565B-Class
    try reading this http://pinoybodybuilding.com/forum/Thread-Squatting-101?pid=29021

    This should help you check where you're doing it wrong. pag may prob pa din let us know we'll kung anu pa pwede maitulong.
  • kulafu25kulafu25 Posts: 292C-Class
    so far ok po itong mga compound exercise para sa akin. Malaking tulong din talaga ang proper form, technique at proper breathing.
  • Nice post. anyways, JOBLESS? visit us @ http://www.unemployedpinoys.com or email us at unemployedpinoys@gmail.com
  • Maghapon ko tong binabasa sa at pinapanood sa youtube. Thanks!
  • dskinnydudedskinnydude Posts: 176
    Siguro mas magandang malaman "why and when you reset during deadlift". In a powerlifting perspective, 'reset' every rep is used more often than without resting in between, this perhaps is to emphasize strength training over hypertrophy, et al. I think its how you program your training, when to use reset and no reset when deadlifting.
    nattypinoy wrote:
    @jules contract mo shoulder blades,chest out, dont look down, shoulder width stance or narrow for different target area of thigh, inhale goin down,exhale at top. or much better nood ka sa utube for proper technique mahirap pag basa lang baka matagal mo makuha. Goodluck

    My thoughts on this though;
    contract mo shoulder blades < I get more stable when lats are contracted
    chest out < tends to hyperextend
    dont look down < personal preference. I get more focused looking slightly down
    shoulder width stance or narrow < personal preference, depending on one's motor control
    inhale goin down,exhale at top < I'd like to hold it til I reach my sticking point or close to ending a rep

    @nattypinoy I'm never against your advise if that suits you or that helps you get 100+ lbs to your squat, diba. Hehe

    cheers
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