More Than Education, the health, fitness & coaching blog by More Than Muscle. This area of the site should be used as a reference point for everything educational relating to training, nutrition, health, fitness & coaching!
The Unilateral Perspective!
Want to grow?
Then the unilateral avenue is the way to go!
This is particularly true in the early stages of programming and is commonly seen during the General Preparation Phases (GPP) of periodisation.
Unilateral (single limb) exercises are exceptionally effective at boosting neural drive towards a muscle. As a consequence, this leads to better connection between the neural system and the muscular one, resulting in more muscle fibres becoming activated and thus an enhanced ability for muscular hypertrophy!
If you are after pure aesthetics, then it makes complete sense to utilise these types of exercises as symmetry is a prime target. In contrast, if performance is your aspiration then enhancing your ability to increase on your rate of force development comes from a balanced strength output from left to right.
Include unilateral exercise early on to enhance your effectiveness with the bigger lifts: squats, pulls, pushes and deadlifts!
Some of my favourite unilateral exercises include:
-single arm rows
-single leg curls
-single arm presses
-seated leg calf raises
Give them a go!