Focus on keeping your abs tight so your rib cage stays down; that will also stretch out your hamstrings, too. If you can’t elevate your legs like Lava does slightly, don’t sweat; you’ll still get plenty of benefit out of these.
The Bulgarian split squat is one of the kings of leg training. With the weights in the front-rack position, bracing your core is critical to maintaining an upright torso.
This is very similar to the Bulgarian split squat, but by removing the back-leg heel elevation, you’ll place a little more focus on your quads (and also challenge your balance differently). The quadruped extension is unique in that it’s a perfect priming movement but here, it’ll help you open up tight quad tissues too.
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. They’re a larger muscle group that can tolerate high loading and large amounts of volume.
These makes training them both fun and frustrating at times, especially for those who have trouble building their quads, to begin with. Many lifters around the globe have been put into situations where they have limited equipment availability, yet, they still want to train and build a strong, aesthetic body.
In this video and article, I discuss five of my favorite quad exercises that you can do with a single kettle bell (or dumbbell, for that matter! Author’s Note: There are a TON of different exercises that you can use to build strong quads with when you only have one kettle bell or dumbbell.
These five were chosen to provide a full range of options for targeting the multiple quad muscles. This exercise is fantastic for increasing the stretch of quads and pushing your limits when it comes to time under tension.
It’s an easy movement to help drive effort up and can be used as a solid quad finisher or main lift. Produces adequate stretch on the quads and facilitates depth that might not be achieved sans elevation.
Maintain a strong torso position and stand back up driving the legs down If you’re really trying to up your strength and hypertrophy efforts with a unilateral exercise, then single-leg goblet squats are a fantastic variation to try.
After you’ve hit depth, stand back up and lockout at the top with a strong quad contraction. Bulgarian split squats are ridiculously brutal as is, but when you add an ipsilateral load, then you can up their intensity even more.
Find a stable base to place your back foot on, then establish a stance width that allows you to achieve depth while keeping the planted leg’s heel down. Grip the kettle bell in the hand that is on the same side as the foot and keep a light brace throughout the core.
Slowly yourself down to full depth, then return to your starting position by thinking about driving through the floor. An easy exercise to modify with tempos and higher rep sets for additional work.
Extend the quad and work on getting the kettle bell as high as possible, then slowly lower back to your starting position. Contralateral step-ups are a great variation because they demand balance, stability, and strength to produce proper movement mechanics and lower body control.
Place the foot firmly on the surface, then step up by thinking about driving the leg down and extending and contracting the quad. Hitting these large muscle groups means a greater hormonal response along with metabolic effect.
The Squat can be categorized as a pushing exercise, and so can be paired with the kettle bell swing for a dramatic effect. The ability to squat well requires adequate stability, mobility, strength and movement patterning.
Regular squatting keeps the joints fresh and mobile reducing the potential for back and knee pain. Finally, you use up to 600 muscles with every squat movement you perform, that makes it perfect for fat loss and overall strength building.
Allow the kettle bell to rest against the chest if needed and keep the arms tucked in. Practice : work up to 20 perfect repetitions moving smooth and steady.
Hold the kettle bell in both hands with the handle pointing upwards. You will find it easier holding the kettle bell by the body rather than by the handle in this position.
As you get stronger and more comfortable with the movement you can add a press into the top of the exercise (see image above) to increase even more muscle activation. Now we move on to the single-handed variation of the kettle bell squat.
You will create an imbalance and rotation through the body by holding the kettle bell one handed and against the chest. Once you have mastered the racked kettle bell squat above you can add even more muscle activation and cardiovascular demands to the movement.
Holding the kettle bell permanently overhead while you squat requires excellent mobility through the upper back and shoulders. Keeping the arm over the head makes the heart work harder too as it pushes the blood uphill.
The kettle bell is held with both hands but the squat is performed on just one leg. Using a resistance band or Tax as demonstrated earlier is a great way to build up strength and mobility in the movement.
An advanced kettle bell squat variation that requires very good hip mobility. Take it nice and steady at first as the kettle bell can throw your weight quickly backwards.
The easiest starting point is by holding a kettle bell in each hand in the racked position against the chest. You can even link fingers if you wish but try to keep the elbows in and upper body nice and compact.
Ensure that you are great at squatting without a kettle bell before loading the movement pattern. You can use a resistance band to help improve your squatting skills and strength.
Take your time, progress carefully and logically and the rewards will be well worth the effort. The kettle bell is excellent for squats due to its unique holding positions.
Everyone is different, begin with only your body weight to master the technique first then start to add weight using the goblet squat. The kettle bell squat is a huge exercise for hitting all those large muscle groups.
Does anyone know if the KB swing is sufficient for quad strength. Some hinge dominant exercises do actually help strengthen the knee.
Heavy swings and snatches work the quads just fine for your average Joe. If you are a competitive athlete whose sport demands greater quad strength (like downhill skiing for instance) you will need more.
Level 6 Valued Member Elite Certified Instructor Also, even just doing some light, even unweighted, prying goblet squats could be very beneficial for you. But yes, swings can be “enough” if they serve your lifestyle just fine.
Does anyone know if the KB swing is sufficient for quad strength. Instead of the Hip Hinge movement in a traditional Kettle bell Swing; you sit (Squat down) back into the movement as the bell drop back behind you.
The height of the Kettle bell squat Swing will be low, a little out in front of you. In finishing the swing, your head will be in around a 45 degree position; you looking down at the floor around 6 ft or so in front of you.
“In the squat style, the kettle bell sinks down more, the knees bend more, and the torso stays slightly more upright...” Contreras research demonstrated slightly more “Peak Vertical Force” was produce with the Kettle bell Squat Swing than the traditional Hip Hinge.
As the article noted, most of the research has been performed with light rather than heavy Kettle bell Swings which “Aren't very meaningful”. Contreras' research demonstrated Heavy Kettle bell Swing (Squat and Hip Hinge) produce higher Power Output, greater force production.
You need to use a fairly heavy bell with the Kettle bell Squat Swing as well as the traditional Hip Hinge Swing to maximize and develop Power. The Kettle bell Squat Swing is an excellent movement for increasing quad, glute and abdominal/core strength.
I have Osteoarthritis on my left knee and due to spurs and a metal plate I struggle to reach parallel. This also makes it hard to run so KB swings are my go-to exercise for leg strength and conditioning.