What Is The Best Type Of Exercise To Correct Muscle Imbalance?

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Personal/Fitness Training Blog

Muscle imbalances are a familiar reason for pain, improper form or a plateau in progress. However, they are so frequently overlooked. Continuing to exercise with a muscular imbalance in your legs can cause the symptoms to worsen, down the line leading to injury. Fortunately, finding and fixing muscle imbalances is a relatively simple process.

Muscle imbalances happen when one collection of muscles — for instance, the pectorals — are of unequal strength or size associated with an opposing group of muscles — for instance, the lats. These differences in muscle function could derail your hard work in the gym and also produce severe injuries.

When one muscle is not strong and the other is overactive, it pulls your body into an incorrect posture — such as rounded shoulders or an excessively arched lower back — which also reduces mobility at your joints and makes particular muscles stiff. Usually, muscle imbalances take place around areas of your body which are supposed to be mobile — hips, shoulders and thoracic spine — however they can happen just about anywhere.

Isolating Muscles Is Crucial To Fixing Imbalances

These types of exercises are useful for highlighting muscular imbalances which may be causing inactivity during exercise. When you have found the areas where strength is weaker, fixing the imbalance requires isolating the muscle and completing targeted exercises in order to strengthen the weaker side.

Split Squats

  • Place yourself in a staggered stance with one of your feet forward.
  • Squat through bending your knees, allowing the heel of your back foot to rise and then your back knee to almost touch the floor.
  • Return to the beginning position by pushing down with your front heel and then extending your front leg.
  • Repeat

(Optional: Hold a dumbbell in each of your hands with your arms at your sides throughout the exercise.)

Wide-Grip Inverted Row

By gripping the barbell wider, your arms will do a lot less work while your overlooked mid-back muscles will do more:

  • Lay a barbell on a power rack or – alternatively – a Smith Machine and, from underneath it, pull yourself up and then touch your chest to the bar.
  • Pin your shoulder blades together and make sure that you keep your body straight like a plank.

Rear Foot Elevated Split Squats (otherwise known as Bulgarian Split Squats)

  • With a bench or chair behind you, place yourself in a staggered stance with your back foot elevated.
  • Squat with your front leg and make sure that your front knee in line with your front foot.
  • Return to your beginning position by pushing down with your front heel and then extending your front leg. Repeat.

Doorway Pec Stretch

  • Stand in a doorway and keep your hands above your head and make a 90° angle with your elbows. Keep your forearms on the door frame.
  • Lean forward and then stretch your pec muscles.

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