The importance of unilateral vs. bilateral training is been debated until the cows come home to get slaughtered, ground and cooked into delicious hamburgers. I’m not going to attempt to argue one way or the other today. If you want to put bone crushing weight on your back and squat until you have hemorrhoids the size of the Hindenburg then you should do so. It’s your life; live it however you like.
This is simply my anecdotal observation: the older you are, let’s say AARP subscribers and up, the more important it is that you spend a good portion of your training time doing single leg work. For many of my older clients, even those with relatively strong squats and/or deadlifts, unloaded bodyweight training in the form of lunges and split squats will be quite challenging.
Don’t mistake this to mean you should drop bilateral. Far from it. Rather, I view the benefits of unilateral training for those trees with a few rings on them to be best suited to hypertrophy and *shudder* “functional” training. As people age their balance gets markedly worse. This can be combated by being stronger. By training these muscles they will get stronger. Stronger muscles = better everything.