Most people avoid hitting leg muscles especially quads, but the quads help us to maintain proper posture while standing and sitting. So, today we are going to share with you the best dumbbell quads exercises that you can do at home as well as in the gym.
The quad or quadriceps is one of the largest muscle groups of the human body, and it is located in front of the thighs. Quadriceps is made up of four different muscles – the vastus lateralis, rectus femoris, vastus medialis, and vastus intermedius.
However, quad muscles are responsible for most of the important day to day activities like jogging, walking, sprinting, running, squatting, cycling and maintaining your body balance. Well-developed quads muscles are a thing of beauty, giving a body symmetry and curvature.
So, it is important to strengthen your quads through exercises. Although, there are a number of exercises you can perform to increase your quad strength and build muscle.
But most fitness enthusiasts don’t have access to the fancy gym equipment, all they have is a pair of dumbbells. Then read the article till the end we listed 7 best dumbbell quads exercises that you can do at home or even in the gym.
Table of Contents
Breakdown of the Quad Muscle
You can look down at the front of your thigh, that’s your quads (quadriceps) femoris. Quads is a four-headed muscle that is made of four unique parts. These are:
- Vastus lateralis
- Vastus medialis
- Vastus intermedius
- Rectus femoris
Each of the heads of the muscle starts at the femur and connects to your kneecap. The primary function of the quads femoris is to extend the leg from the knees. They are also responsible for most of the daily activities such as walking, running, jogging, cycling, maintaining body balance and more.
Best Dumbbell Quads Exercises
Here are the best 7 dumbbell quads exercises you can do at home with just a pair of dumbbells and bench or even you can perform in the gym. Below are the best exercises for quadriceps with dumbbells and instructions with video.
01. Dumbbell Lunges
The dumbbell lunges are great lower body exercise. You will feel the burn in your quads, glutes, hips and hamstrings. It will also build strength in your abs and your calf muscles, and even this exercise strengthens your lower back as it helps to keep you balanced throughout the movement.
There are two types of lunges: stationary lungs and reverse lungs. Both the exercises are important for improving hip mobility and strengthening the overall lover body.
How to Perform Dumbbell Stationary Lungs:
- Stand straight with your feet hip-width apart. Grab a pair of dumbbells in each hand with a neutral grip.
- Place your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing the body.
- Now, take one long step forward with your left foot and bend your right knee at 90-degree, so that both of your knees are bent.
- Hold the position for a few seconds and then slowly return back to the starting position. That’s one rep.
- Repeat the same steps for the other side.
- Do 4 sets of 20 to 22 reps.
- Ensure to hold the dumbbells by your sides throughout the movement.
How to Perform Dumbbell Reverse Lungs
- Stand tall with your feet hip-width stance. Hold the pair of dumbbells with your hands with a neutral grip.
- Hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing the body. That’s your starting position.
- Now, take one large step backward with your left foot and bend the knee at 90-degrees so that your both knees are bent.
- Hold the movement for a few seconds and then return back to the starting position with controlled motion. That’s one rep.
- Repeat the same steps with the other side.
- Do 4 sets of 20 to 22 reps.
02. Dumbbell Goblet Squat
The dumbbell goblet squat is effective and an important exercise for the lower body including your quads. It helps your lower body muscles and strength development, improve your range of motion through hips and reduce lower back pain.
This exercise is one of the best for building a solid leg, stronger core and also reduces the risk of injuries.
How to perform:
- Begin with standing starlight with your feet shoulder-width apart along with holding a dumbbell with your hands.
- Grip the head of the dumbbell with your both hands and hold it vertically close to your chest.
- Keep your back straight and core tight, squat down as low as you can (until your glutes and thighs become parallel to the floor). keep your lower back tight when you squat.
- Hold the movement for a second at the bottom, and then return back to the starting position. That’s one rep.
- Do 3 sets of 14 to 16 reps, and 60 seconds rest between the sets.
03. Dumbbell Front Squat
The dumbbell front squat is one of the must-do exercises for your quads. This is simple and effective exercises to help you build stronger quads, legs, abs and overall full-body strength.
The small study conducted in 2009 by the journal strength and conditioning: the dumbbell front squat exercise may be beneficial for the people with knee problems like meniscus tears, and also advantages for long-term joint health.
How to perform:
- Stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the dumbbells in each hand with a neutral grip, and place them on your shoulders with your palms facing each other.
- Now, take a breath and keep your core tight.
- Then, bend your knees and slightly push your hips back to lower down into a squat position (lower yourself until your thighs are parallel to the floor).
- Hold the position for a few seconds and then slowly return back to standing position squeezing through your glutes. That’s one rep.
- Do 3 sets of 10 to 16 reps and take 45-60 seconds rest between the sets.
04. Dumbbell Bulgarian Squat
The Bulgarian squat is one of the best and effective lower body exercises, which strengthens the muscles of the legs, including your quads, glutes, hamstrings and the calves. Also, as a single-leg exercise, your core is also forced to work in overdrive to maintain your balance.
This exercise puts less stress on your lower back and improves your core strength.
How to perform:
- Stand straight with your feet hip-width apart. Hold one dumbbell in each hand and keep your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing your body.
- Now, place your left foot on the box or bench with your heel facing upward. That’s your starting position.
- Now, lower your hips towards the floor by bending your knees so that your left knee comes close to the floor. don’t let your left knee touch the floor.
- Hold the movement for a few seconds and then drive your weight back up with the right leg. That’s one rep. make sure to alternate the legs.
- Keep your chest up during the movement and make sure to keep your torso upright.
- Do 4 sets of 12 to 16 reps, and take 60 second rest between the sets.
05. Dumbbell Step-Up
The dumbbell step-up is a unilateral leg workout, and it effectively strengthens movement for the lower body, emphasizing the glutes, quads and hamstring. This exercise also improves core strength and stability.
The dumbbell step-up exercises provide multiple benefits such as it improves your balance, increases your squat and deadlift strength, and also puts less pressure on your lower back.
How to perform:
- Stand straight with your feet hip-width stance in front of the box or stair.
- Grab a pair of dumbbells in each hand with a neutral grip and hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing your body.
- Now, take one step up with your left leg on the box and push through your left foot to lift your body and stand tall on the box.
- Then reverse the movement to return back to the starting position. That’s one rep. make sure to switch legs.
- Do 4 sets of 12 to 16 reps, and take 45-60 seconds rest between the sets.
06. Lateral Lunge with Dumbbells
Lateral lunges with dumbbells are an effective exercise which develop balance, stability and strength. This exercise targets quads, hamstrings, and glutes. Also, Lateral lunges train your body to move side to side and help improve hip flexibility.
How to perform:
- Stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height with elbows bent. This is your starting position.
- Now, release your left foot and take one big step to your side and bend your left knee, ensuring that your right leg remains straight.
- Hold the position for a second and then, return back to the starting position by pushing up with the left leg.
- Switch sides and repeat the same steps.
- Do 4 sets of 10 to 14 reps, and take 60 second rest between the sets.
07. Dumbbell Deadlift for Quads
The dumbbell deadlift is one of the effective exercises for your overall fitness. This exercise targets your glutes, quads, hamstrings, lats, core traps and lower body.
There are a number of benefits of deadlifting including it promotes muscle growth, enhances endurance, burns more calories, increases stamina, strength and power.
How to perform:
- Place a pair of dumbbells with desirable weight on the floor and stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Keep your core tight and your back straight. Then slowly bend your knees and push your hips back to lower down to lift the dumbbells.
- Hold the movement for a second, and then slowly lower the weight back to the starting position.
- Maintain your back flat during the movement.
- Do 3 sets of 10 to 12 reps, and take 60 to 90 seconds rest between the sets.
Why Do We Need to Train Quadriceps (Quads)?
- A well-developed set of quads is a thing of beauty and it gives a body symmetry and curvature.
- Quads are also responsible for walking, running, jumping, squatting, cycling and maintaining your body balance. So, it is very important to strengthen your quads and it also improves the overall fitness level.
- According to the Yoga Journal, the quads are important for knee and hip extensions. That’s the reason you need to strengthen your quad muscles. Having strong quads prevent knee injuries, strains and tears.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do You Need to Train Quads?
Leg workouts are a very important aspect of a balance, it improves your whole-body fitness that builds strength, stability and speed. It’s important to stay consistent with your leg workouts because these are larger muscles in our body, and it plays an important role in our overall fitness level.
How Often Can You Train Quads?
It is very important to work out your quads at least once a week. If you’re training twice a week, that’s also good but make sure to give rest to the muscles for recovery.
Training your quads is pretty important for overall fitness level. The quads are one of the largest muscles in our body and it is easier to activate with the dumbbell exercises. The above dumbbell quads exercises will help you strengthen the quads muscles and even they target some other muscles groups.
The barbell and machine exercises are more effective but in the absence of those equipment dumbbells will work best for you.
Hopefully, you like this article, if you have any questions and suggestions kindly put them in the comment box below.
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