Leg exercises that should be in everyone’s strength training program.

Leg exercises that should be in everyone’s strength training program.

Squat

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Squats are one of the best exercises to workout your entire lower body.  Follow these steps to make sure you are using proper form:

  1. Stand with feet hip width apart
  2. Bend your knees and sit back, like you're sitting in a chair
  3. Hinge your hips forward while keeping your spine straight and chest up
  4. Make sure your knees are pointing over your toes, not collapsing in or out
  5. In the up phase, push through the heels using your glutes

 

Split Squat/ Lunge

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Split squats and lunges are other great exercises that work all of the muscles of the lower body.  A split squat is when you keep both feet stationary and just move up and down.  In a lunge you would just move your front or back foot to meet the other in between reps.

To work the gluteal group primarily take a larger step and keep your weight in the heel of the front foot while pushing up.  To use work the quadriceps more take a smaller step.

Proper Form:

  1. Take a step forward and bend both of the knees, make sure your front knee is not passing over your toes, make sure your back knee is bending towards the ground
  2. Hips should be moving forward and down
  3. Push through the heel to press yourself back up, repeat

 

Single Leg Dead Lift 

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The single leg deadlift works the hamstrings, glutes and muscles of the lower back, it is also a great exercise to practice balance.

Proper form:

  1. Stand on one leg, weight in your heel, holding a dumbbell in both hands
  2. Bend at the waist bringing your chest towards the ground, keep your shoulders and hips squared, back flat and abs super tight
  3. Pull yourself up slowly using the hamstrings and glutes, returning to starting position.