The Top 4 Squat Exercises that Get Results

In this world of workouts, there are tons of different squat exercises to add to your routine. Which ones are the most effective and will get the job done, whipping you into shape and giving you the results you work for? Here’s our list of the Top 4 squat exercises that get results.

1. Dumbbell Squats

These are great and surprisingly powerful. A quick little number, they are perfect for kicking off your workout. As you progress and get stronger, you can add more weight or more reps to keep things challenging and keep improving your strength.

How to Do It:

You’ll want to be standing up straight, holding the dumbbells at your sides. Squat like you are about to sit down in a chair, and as you lower yourself be sure to keep your weight right over your heels. Your knees should not at any point come out farther than your toes. Squeeze your gluteal muscles to get the full effect, as you rise back up to the starting position. Repeat this for about 15-20 reps.

2. Explosive Lunges

We know what you’re thinking – anything with the word “explosive” in the name does not sound easy or fun, but this is one squat exercise that gets a lot accomplished: it works on stretch while also improving balance and coordination.

How to Do It:

Position your feet together with your hands on your hips, and begin to lunge forward using your right leg. Then, jump up and switch legs while you’re still in the air, so that you land with your left leg in lunge position. Continue doing this for one minute. While you lunge, your fists should be out in front of your face, almost like you’re boxing. When pushing off the ground, be sure to push off using both feet. When in lunge position, your front leg should be at a 90 degree angle and aligned with your ankle.

3. Plie

This one is simple but effective, and great for toning. It’s part of a routine called the Brazilian Butt Lift, so if that’s not convincing, we’re not sure what is.

How to Do It:

Position your feet slightly wider than shoulder length apart, with your toes pointing outward. Have your arms out in front of you as you lower into a squat. Come back up to starting position and repeat the exercise for one minute. Remember, just like with the dumbbell squats, you don’t want your knees coming out past your toes. You’ll want to have your tailbone tucked in and torso straight up and down, and don’t forget to contract those gluteal muscles.

4. Back Squat

This is your basic and most common squat exercise, but it’s the most common for a reason. It works! It’s extremely effective for increasing lower body strength, as it places lots of emphasis on the gluteal muscles and hamstrings.

How to Do It:

For this move, position those feet slightly wider than shoulder width and your shoulder blades tight together. You should be maintaining a tight upper back throughout the squat. As you go down and come back up, keep your hips behind, your chest up, and your back arched. As you lower yourself, keep going until your hip is lower than the top of your knees. You read that right, lower than the top of your knees. That’s pretty low, but it’s “no pain, no gain,” right? Then come back up to starting position. This exercise can be done with barbells or without them.

Lower body strength is an important part of being fit and in your best shape, and squat exercises are great for working on your lower body while improving toning, coordination, balance, and even a little good old fashioned perseverance and determination. As your glutes get tougher, and so will you!

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