4 fundamental exercises every gym goer should know

In this article I plan to address those who might have otherwise neglected their fundamentals, much like in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu the fundamentals of lifting give us the ground work to build from. In lifting there are what i believe to be 4 fundamental exercises every gym goer should know and have mastered to some degree, these fundamentals will help you improve the rest of your workouts and set you up to begin more advanced movements and exercises.


The Squat: the most well known of exercises and the Bain of many, the squat is a powerful workout that does a lot work within the legs. the prime movers working are the Gluteals and Quadriceps, the synergist is the Hamstrings while the deep abdominal muscles work to stabilize the body.

The Dead lift: another antagonist of the gym, the deadlift is an exercise that pulls weight off the ground utilizing the leg muscles. The primary movers in this exercise include the Gluteous Maximous and Quadriceps. The rest of the work is done through the synergists abductors and hamstrings, helping to drive that upwards motion through the knees and hips. Stabilizers include Gluteous Medius, Piriformis, Transverse Abdominous, internal Obliques, Latissimus Dorsi, and finally the fore arms.

The Incline Bench Press: I choose to put the incline bench press in this due to its ability to hit several planes of the pectoral muscles shoulders and triceps. The primary movers are the pectoral major and triceps, your synergist include the biceps. Your deltoids will also being working hard as they stabilize the concentric and dicentric motions.

The Row: I couldn’t just go with one single variation of this exercise, but they all share one thing in common. They all work the upper back! Your prime movers for this exercise include the Infraspinatus, latissimus Dorsi, deep Rhomboids, and the Teres major & minor. Bring up the rear are the synergist Pectoralis major and the Brachialis, while the posterior Delts stabilize the arms through the workout.