161 Long Road, Chesterfield, Missouri 63005

Why we do Unilateral Movements

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Did you know…

We tend to do a decent amount of single arm and single leg exercises but have you ever wondered why?


If you must know, there are several reasons…


First, with unilateral movements you remove any chance of playing favorites or one limb doing the bulk of the lifting to overcompensate for one side being weaker than the other. We all have muscle imbalances to one degree or another and unilateral exercises help to minimize this difference keeping us more in balance.


Second, with unilateral movements there tends to be a greater core stability demand meaning your core muscles are working even when we aren’t doing core specific exercises.


Third, specific to lower body exercises, working on one leg at a time doubles the amount of our own body weight the one leg is supporting which means the exercises require less external load which means we can get stronger without having to hold extra weight which can be stressful on the body in certain positions.


Last but not least, when we do unilateral lower body exercises there is a greater balance requirement which is extremely important for our more “wiser” clients that want to improve their balance or make sure it does not decline.




To wrap this up, this is not to say two arm or two leg exercises are bad because they aren’t. That being said, single arm/leg movements can create some unique ways to challenge our body that otherwise would not be possible.



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