When we join a gym, our instructor often advises us not to skip a leg day. Do you know why? This is because leg workouts or lower body workouts are crucial for getting a balanced body.
These exercises help to gain strength, speed, and stability for doing daily tasks. To complete these lower body exercises, there are several machines available at gyms. But, do you know that dumbbells are enough for a full leg-day routine?
Dumbbells are versatile gym equipment that can be used in various ways in various exercises to train every part of the body. Here in this article, you can see some of the best leg workouts using dumbbells. But, before that, let’s learn why we need to add special attention to legs during workouts.
Benefits of lower body or leg workouts
Lower body workouts offer a lot of benefits to the trainees, and during these workouts, it engages the major muscles of the body that helps to improve the overall athletic performance in our daily life. Some of the other benefits these workouts offer are as follows:
The sole aim of leg workouts is to make the lower body stronger and muscular. And we all know a strong body will keep our body more composed and stable. This is why leg workouts play a major role in avoiding unwanted injuries, like fractures.
During leg days, our body stimulates the release of many hormones like cortisol, testosterone, Human growth hormone (HGH). The more you work on your legs, the more hormones are released.
- Cortisol helps in increasing the fat metabolism of the body and also responds to stress.
- The role of testosterone is to build the skeletal muscles in the body and heals or repairs the damaged muscle proteins.
- As the name suggests, HGH helps in the overall growth of the body, like immunity boosting, boosting fat metabolism, and promoting the growth of muscle.
These exercises balance the strength in both legs individually. This means the leg workouts ensure that both the legs, i.e., the dominant and the non-dominant, are in good shape and equal in strength, mobility, and flexibility. But, to get a better result, you must have to work on each leg individually.
If you work on each leg individually, it is advised to start with the non-dominant leg first. Doing single-leg exercises helps to engage the core muscles and promotes rehabilitation.
Doing single-leg exercise engages the same muscle on the other leg too. There will be no direct stimulation on the other leg, which is beneficial when the other leg is recovering from an injury.
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Burns More Calories
Leg workouts are exhausting and burn a lot of calories too. Leg workouts tighten and build the muscles and cut the fat from the lower body.
Here is top Dumbbell Exercises for Lower Body
Dumbbells are not only meant for bicep curls to get muscular biceps and triceps but also can build strong legs too. Below we have mentioned some of the top exercises with dumbbells for legs.
These are like the normal squats we do, but with a change, i.e., using dumbbells.
- Stand up straight and keep your feet up to hip distance apart.
- Now, hold dumbbells in each hand and position the hands raised upwards.
- After that, you have to art bending your knees until the thighs are parallel to the ground. You also have to put all your body weight on your heels.
- While you are doing the process, keep your spines straight and shoulders relaxed.
- Now, slowly move back to the original position and count this as one rep.
- Do this exercise at least a couple of reps or sets with a minimum of 90-120 seconds rest between two sets.
To start with this exercise, prepare yourself for the initial position.
- First of all, stand straight with feet apart up to hip distance or shoulder distance.
- Pick up two dumbbells, one on each hand, and raise the arms to shoulder level with dumbbells positioning adjacent to the ears.
- Now, start the exercise by bending the keeps until your thighs are parallel to the floor. During the process, try to shift the bodyweight to the heels.
- As you move up, press your arms upwards simultaneously.
- After you stand up straight, count it as one rep. But, make sure you come back to the initial form before going for the next rep.
This is another leg exercise with dumbbells that follows a simple process to perform.
- The starting posture is slightly different from the above two. For this type of exercise, you must stand straight and move your feet apart more than shoulder width. Also, you have to be sure that your toes are pointed out while you stand.
- Now pick up a dumbbell and hold it with both of your hands from its two ends. Position the dumbbell near the chest level.
- Now, start bending the knees and push your hips back until the knee makes a 90° angle, or the elbow touches the knees.
- While you stand up, concentrate the bodyweight on your feet.
- This completes one rep for you, and this should be done 8-10 times in a set.
Dumbbell Sumo Squat
As the name suggests, you have to stand like a sumo wrestler in this exercise.
- At first, position your feet wide apart and try to point your toes a little bit outwards.
- Now pick two dumbbells in two hands and position them in front of your chest with dumbbells attached.
- As you get ready with the position, start bending the knees until your thighs get parallel to the floor. Weight shifting is essential, so try to shift your weight to the heels.
- While coming back to the original position, squeeze the glutes and slowly straighten your legs.
- With this, your first rep gets completed. Do this exercise a few more times to get the best results out of it.
- In this dumbbell exercise, you have to stand straight first and pick up a pair of dumbbells in both your hands. The dumbbells should be positioned by your sides.
- After you get ready, start pushing your hip backward with bending knees. Go as low as you can until the dumbbells touch the ground or until there is a little distance between dumbbells and the ground.
- Do not disturb the position of your arms throughout the exercise, which means keep your arms straight.
- During the process, make sure that your back is straight, and the chest is almost parallel to the ground.
- As you stand up, squeeze up your glutes, and this completes one rep for you.
This is one type of single-leg exercise with the use of dumbbells.
- In this exercise, stand straight and keep your feet slightly apart for proper balance.
- Now pick up two dumbbells in both hands and rest them on your sides.
- Start bending downwards and simultaneously raise one leg; let’s consider the left leg until you get parallel to the floor or the dumbbells touch the ground.
- Make sure the left leg and the upper body are on an equal plane.
- Now come back to the initial position keeping the leg straight with the upper body.
- Do this exercise with both your legs, one after the other.
Alternating Forward Lunges with Bicep Curls
This exercise will benefit multiple parts of the body, including the lower body and the arms.
- To start the exercise, stand straight and keep the feet almost hip-width apart.
- Hold a pair of dumbbells on your sides with both hands.
- Move one leg forward and rest it on your feet. Now bend the other one as its thighs will stand perpendicular to the floor, but rest it on your toes only.
- As your legs move, make sure your arms complete one bicep curl simultaneously.
- After the first rep is completed, follow the same process by changing legs to complete another rep.
This swing is similar to the kettlebell swing with a small change in equipment, i.e., dumbbell.
- Stand by splitting your legs apart up to shoulder width and keep the toes pointing outside.
- Now, bend down your knees and move your hips outwards. After that, you have to pick up a heavyweight dumbbell from one end and then hold it with both your hands and place it between your legs.
- Keep the spines straight and glutes tight while you swing the dumbbell up to your chest height. As the dumbbells move up, keep straightening your legs simultaneously.
- Let the dumbbell fall in the gaps between the legs and get yourself ready for the next turn or rep.
Split Squat with Overhead Press
To do this exercise, first, position yourself in the initial posture.
- First, take a forward step with a distance of 2-3 feet between two feet.
- Take two dumbbells and hold them in an upraised position by keeping your arms straight. Make sure the palms are facing out in this exercise.
- As you start the exercise, bend down both the knees so that the forward thigh stays parallel to the floor and the backward thigh stays perpendicular. Simultaneously, press the dumbbells up to your shoulders.
- Now, return to the initial position to complete one rep of this exercise.
One of the simplest dumbbell exercises for the legs.
- This exercise requires two heavy dumbbells in your rack and an o space to move.
- To start this exercise, pick the heaviest dumbbell you can pick and place them on your sides.
- Start walking here and there until you get tired.
- There is no rep count with this exercise, as one rep will be counted when you start losing your grip on the dumbbells.
- This exercise is highly beneficial for those who want to make their thighs strong.
This exercise is great for those who are beginners. For this type of exercise, you must have to stand straight first with your feet slightly apart.
- Hold two dumbbells of your choice and place them adjacent to your ears. But, make sure that the palms are facing inward here.
- Now, bend down both your knees or, in short, kneel yourself with dumbbells at the original position.
- To start the rep, bring the right leg forward with thighs making a 180° angle with the floor.
- Then, bend the right leg, and bring the left leg forward similarly as previously done.
- This will be considered one rep for this exercise, and it should be done at least 8-10 times in a set.
Bulgarian Split Squat
Hold a pair of dumbbells weighing around 10-20 pounds in this exercise.
- Now position yourself by placing the toes of your left leg on a stable bench or box.
- Keep your right leg 2-3 feet forward from the bench so that your knee positions over your ankle while doing squats.
- Start bending your right knee and lower the pelvis simultaneously until the hips are parallel to the ground.
- To get to the initial position, put pressure on the right feet, get up, and count it as one rep.
To do this exercise, take a heavy dumbbell as per your comfort.
- Lie down on your back by bending your knees and keeping your feet flat. Ensure that the knees and feet are positioned in a straight line to achieve the right posture for this exercise.
- Now, position the heavy dumbbells on your lower abdomen and hold the dumbbells with both your hands to avoid the movement of dumbbells.
- Start raising your hips upward, and hold the position for at least 3 seconds before you come down to complete one rep.
After a long journey, now you can see that we have explained some of the best exercises possible for legs using dumbbells. These exercises are ideal for both beginners and professionals, but every exercise should be done properly to achieve the required result.
Do these easy exercises using dumbbells consistently, either at home or at the gym, and you will surely build a strong lower body.