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How to Use the Bowflex for Compound Movements

The Bowflex is a unique piece of fitness equipment that allows you to customize your full-body workout. The Bowflex is designed with Power rods, which provide resistance when you contract a muscle. This resistance will help you build lean muscle mass. Below are several compound exercises that you can complete when using the Bowflex. A compound exercise is one that works out a combination of muscle groups and joints at the same time. By working out multiple muscles at the same time, you will be able to work out more muscles in a shorter amount of time. Compound movements are good for individuals who are aiming to lose weight or build lean muscle mass because these exercises use more oxygen and require greater muscle recruitment. This increases the body’s heart rate more than isolation movements. Therefore, you will burn more calories. Here are four compound movements that can be done using a Bowflex. 

Exercise #1: Oblique Crunch

The oblique crunch will work your rectus abdominis, external oblique and internal oblique muscles. To start this exercise, adjust the pulley to be in the narrow position. Adjust the bench to be in a 45-degree position and sit facing away from the power rods. Grasp one handle and spread the cuff. You will want to slide the cuff up until it is around the shoulder. Hold the cuff with one hand and place your other hand on the opposite hip. Tighten your abdominal muscles and guide the shoulder with the cuff on it towards the opposite hip. Pause when contracted and slowly return to the starting position. Do 12 repetitions and then switch sides.

Exercise #2: Bench Press

The bench press will help you workout your pectoralis major, anterior deltoid and triceps. Begin this exercise by adjusting the bench to a 45-degree position. Sit facing away from the power rods. Grasp the handles in each hand and straighten your arms so they are extended out in front of you at chest level. Slightly bend your elbows. With your feet flat on the floor, slowly bend your elbows outward while you lower the handles until your thumbs are almost touching your shoulder. Slowly press arms back out to starting position. Complete 12 repetitions.

Exercise #3: Seated Row

This compound exercise works your lats and your biceps. To begin, sit on the bench facing the power rods. You will want to grasp the handles with both hands, palms facing each other. Place feet on the platform with your knees bent. Sit with a straight back and tighten your abdominals. Pinch your shoulder blades together and pull your arms back and inward toward the sides of your torso. With your elbows guiding you, move your upper arms past your torso. Pause in this contracted position and then slowly return to starting position. Complete 12 repetitions.

Exercise #4: Leg Press

The leg press is an excellent compound movement because it works the glutes, hamstrings and quadriceps. To perform this exercise, remove the bench and lock in the row seat. Sit facing the power rods. Attach the leg press belt and adjust it properly around your hips. Place your feet on the upright pulley frame and straighten legs. Make sure to avoid locking your knees. Slowly bend your hips and knees and slide towards the power rods. When knees reach a 90-degree angle, press back out until knees are almost straight. Perform 12 repetitions. 

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