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4 Effective Dumbbell Leg Exercises To Try This New Year

4 Effective Dumbbell Chest Exercises To Try This New Year

Now that January’s almost over, I hope you’re making plenty of progress with your New Year fitness goals. During the month, I’ve tried to help along the way by providing you with a range of dumbbell based exercises that you can use to strengthen and tone your chesttricepsupper backbiceps and shoulders. Today I’m going to be finishing off this series of dumbbell based articles and providing you with 4 Effective Dumbbell Leg Exercises To Try This New Year.

As I’ve mentioned in the previous articles, dumbbells are a fantastic workout tool which can be used to strengthen and tone all parts of your body. So if you want to build big, powerful legs this New Year, these four effective dumbbell leg exercises will allow you to do exactly that. Simply grab a pair of dumbbells and you’re good to go.

For the best results with these dumbbell leg exercises, I recommend aiming for 3-5 sets of 8-12 repetitions. I normally start off with a light warm up set then do three main heavy sets. During the heavy sets, I aim for 12 repetitions and make sure I can do a minimum of eight. If I can’t do eight repetitions, I lower the weight I’m lifting and if I can easily do 12 repetitions, I increase it.

Exercise 1 – Dumbbell Squat

The dumbbell squat is a highly effective compound exercise for the legs that works your glutes, hamstrings and quads. It also gives your core muscles a secondary workout and tests your balance.

Equipment Required:

– 2 Dumbbells

Instructions:

1. Grab a dumbbell in each hand, hold them by your side with your palms facing inwards and stand up straight with your feet a shoulder width apart.
2. Slowly curl the dumbbells towards your shoulders until your biceps are fully flexed.
3. Once you have the dumbbells in position by your shoulders, slowly bend your knees, push your butt out behind you, keep your back straight and lower your body towards the ground, stopping when your butt is parallel with your knees.
4. Slowly extend your knees and raise your body back up to the starting position.
5. Repeat steps 3-4 for 8-12 repetitions.
6. After your last repetition, put the dumbbells on the floor.
7. Rest for 1 minute and then repeat steps 2-6 for the desired number of sets.
8. If you’re working out in a gym and you no longer require the dumbbells after your final set, make sure you put them away.

Variations:

- Dumbbell Squat (dumbbells by your side):- Perform the exercise as described above but instead of holding the dumbbells by your shoulders as you squat, hold them by the side of your hips. Holding the dumbbells in this position makes it easier to balance, so this is a great option if you have difficulty balancing.
- Dumbbell Pistol Squats:- Grab a lighter pair of dumbbells, get in the position described above, kick your right leg out in front of you, get your balance on your left leg and perform 8-12 squats. Once you’ve done 8-12 squats on your left leg, switch legs, kick your left leg out in front of you, get your balance on your right leg and perform a further 8-12 squats. Dumbbell pistol squats are extremely challenging and give your legs, core muscles and balance an intense workout.

Video Demonstration:


Exercise 2 – Romanian Dumbbell Deadlift

The Romanian dumbbell deadlift is a fantastic exercise for targeting your hamstrings and glutes. It also works your upper back to a lesser degree.

Equipment Required:

– 2 Dumbbells

Instructions:

1. Grab a dumbbell in each hand, hold them in front of your legs with your palms facing backwards, then stand up straight with a slight arch in your back and your feet a shoulder width apart.
2. Slowly lean forwards by bending at the hip and lower the dumbbells towards the floor, stopping when your hamstrings feel tight.
3. Slowly raise your body and the dumbbells back up to the starting position.
4. Repeat steps 2-3 for 8-12 repetitions.
5. After your last repetition, put the dumbbells on the floor.
6. Rest for 1 minute and then repeat steps 2-5 for the desired number of sets.
7. If you’re working out in a gym and you no longer require the dumbbells after your final set, make sure you put them away.

Variations:

- Single Leg Romanian Dumbbell Deadlift:- Grab a lighter pair of dumbbells, get in the position described above, kick your right leg out behind you, get your balance on your left leg and perform 8-12 Romanian dumbbell deadlifts. Once you’ve done 8-12 Romanian dumbbell deadlifts on your left leg, switch legs, kick your left leg out behind you, get your balance on your right leg and perform a further 8-12 Romanian dumbbell deadlifts. Single leg Romanian dumbbell deadlifts are extremely challenging and give your hamstrings, glutes, core muscles and balance an intense workout.

Video Demonstration:


Exercise 3 – Dumbbell Lunge

The dumbbell lunge is a brilliant compound exercise that works multiple muscles in your legs. It also improves your balance and core stability.

Equipment Required:

– 2 Dumbbells

Instructions:

1. Grab a dumbbell in each hand, hold them by your side with your palms facing inwards and stand up straight with your feet a shoulder width apart.
2. Take a big stride forwards with your left leg and slowly bend both your knees, stopping just before your right knee touches the ground. Your left knee should be at a 90 degree angle when bent.
3. Slowly extend both your knees, step backwards with your left leg and return to the starting position.
4. Take a big stride forwards with your right leg and slowly bend both your knees, stopping just before your left knee touches the ground. Your right knee should be at a 90 degree angle when bent.
5. Slowly extend both your knees, step backwards with your right leg and return to the starting position.
6. Repeat steps 2-5 for 8-12 repetitions.
7. After your last repetition, put the dumbbells on the floor.
8. Rest for 1 minute and then repeat steps 2-7 for the desired number of sets.
9. If you’re working out in a gym and you no longer require the dumbbells after your final set, make sure you put them away.

Variations:

- Reverse Dumbbell Lunge:- Perform the exercise as described above but instead of getting in the lunge position by stepping forwards, get in the lunge position by stepping backwards. By incorporating the reverse dumbbell lunge into your workouts, you can add some variety and stop the exercise getting repetitive.
- Stationary Dumbbell Lunge:- Perform the exercise as described above but instead of stepping forwards and backwards with each repetition, get in the lunge position and perform all your repetitions from a stationary wide stance before stepping back. Performing the exercise in this way makes it easier to balance, so this is a great alternative if you’re currently struggling with your balance.

Video Demonstration:


Exercise 4 – Dumbbell Calf Raise

The dumbbell calf raise is a top exercise for targeting your calves. It also gives your core muscles a secondary workout.

Equipment Required:

– 2 Dumbbells

Instructions:

1. Grab a dumbbell in each hand, hold them by your side with your palms facing inwards and stand up straight with your feet a shoulder width apart.
2. Slowly raise your heels off the ground and lift yourself up onto your toes as high as you can go.
3. Slowly lower your heels back down to the ground.
4. Repeat steps 2-3 for 8-12 repetitions.
5. After your last repetition, put the dumbbells on the floor.
6. Rest for 1 minute and then repeat steps 2-5 for the desired number of sets.
7. If you’re working out in a gym and you no longer require the dumbbells after your final set, make sure you put them away.

Variations:

- Single Leg Dumbbell Calf Raise:- Grab a lighter pair of dumbbells, get in the position described above, raise your right leg off the ground, get your balance on your left leg and perform 8-12 dumbbell calf raises. Once you’ve done 8-12 dumbbell calf raises on your left leg, switch legs, raise your left leg off the ground, get your balance on your right leg and perform a further 8-12 dumbbell calf raises. Single leg dumbbell calf raises are extremely challenging and give your calves a more intense workout than the regular version of the exercise.

Video Demonstration:

Summary

Many people neglect their legs when trying to strengthen and tone their body and instead focus only on their upper body. However, if you’re serious about improving your fitness this New Year, leg workouts need to be part of your training regime. Not only does training your legs give your body a more even, symmetrical appearance but it also gives you a real boost when performing other exercises. So have a go at all the exercises on this list, decide which ones fit best into your workouts and start building up your legs today.

What do you guys think? Are legs currently part of your workout plans? Do you use dumbbells to train your legs? Write a comment at the bottom of this post and let me know your thoughts. Also, if you found the dumbbell leg exercises in this article beneficial, please Like It+1 ItPin It and Tweet It, so that as many people as possible can give their legs an effective workout this New Year.

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Comments

  1. tee says

    whats the point of just posting youtube videos dont you have anything original? as well why would anyone read the instructions when they can just watch it. srs

    [Reply]

    Tom Reply:

    Hey Tee – These posts are aimed at beginners who want to quickly find a selection of exercises to build up specific muscle groups or for more advanced people who are looking for new exercises to add to their routine. Organising them in a single post makes it easier for the reader to find what they need rather than having to search for multiple videos on YouTube.

    [Reply]

  2. Lindsay says

    I love that you posted the videos and wrote the instructions out! I watched and learned, then at the gym I can quickly refer back without having to watch again! Thanks for the great post! :) Cheers.

    [Reply]

    Tom Reply:

    Hi Lindsay – I’m glad the videos were useful for you :).

    [Reply]

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