Back Exercise: Deadlift

Barbell deadlift

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Lower back Target (secondary) GlutesHamstringsQuadricepsMiddle backLatissimus Dorsi,
Equipment DumbbellsBarbell Mechanics Compound
Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • Place your feet flat beneath the loaded barbell.
  • Keep your back straight as squat down to above parallel and grasp the bar with a should width or slightly wider with an overhand grip (if this is too difficult, use a mixed grip)
  • Lift the bar from the ground by hinging your hips forward, extending your knees and raising your torso – pull the shoulder blades back and your chest out by squeezing your back muscles at the top.
  • Bring the barbell back to the ground by leaning your torso forwarded, pushing your hips back and bending at the knees – keep your back straight at all times.

Never round the back and always use perfect form to prevent back injury – never use more weight than you can lift properly.

Be careful with this exercise if you already  have (lower) back problems.

→ See the full back and legs workout here

[end]What’s your deadlift PR? [/end]

Leg Exercise: Squat

Barbell squat form Barbell squat form

Type Resistance Target (primary) Quadriceps Target (secondary) CalvesGlutesHamstrings, Lower back
Equipment Dumbbells Barbell Bodyweight Mechanics Compound
Force Push
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • If you are using a barbell, position it high on the shoulders and hold at each side. Make sure the bar is placed at height where you can unrack it with your feet flat on the floor.
  • Take a step back. Stand with feet shoulder width apart, pointing slightly outward
  • Bend at the knees while you hinge your hips back (focus should be on pushing your hips back – do not allow your knees to travel over your toes)
  • Descend until it is possbile to draw a line parallel to the floor from your knee cap to where your upper thigh and hip are joint together.
  • Exhale and push through your feet as you extend your knees and hips until your legs are straight.
  • Keep your knees pointed in the same direction as your toes – if you find this difficult, try to focus on pushing through your heels and the outside of your feet.
  • Avoid rounding your back and keep your head up throughout the movement

→ See the full leg workout here

[end]What’s your squat PR? [/end]

Leg Exercise: Smith Jump Lunge

Smith machine jump lunge Smith machine jump lunge
Aka lunge sprint

Type ResistancePlyometric
Target (primary) Quadriceps
Target (secondary)  CalvesGlutesHamstrings
Equipment Smith Machine Mechanics Compound
Force Push
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Unilateral

How is it performed?

  • Place yourself with bar of the smith machine on your shoulders in a lunge position: One leg back, knee lowered to the ground or slightly above, front leg at a 90 degree angle.
  • From here explode upwards by driving the force through the heel of your front leg and change positions of your legs.
  • Lower back down into a lunge position and repeat.

→ See the full leg workout here

[end]What’s your favorite leg exercise? [/end]

Leg Exercise: Romanian Deadlift

Romanian deadlift

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Glutes Target (secondary) Hamstrings, Hip adductorLower backCalves
Equipment Barbell
Mechanics Compound
Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Unilateral

How is it performed?

  • Grap a barbell on the floor using a pronated or mixed grip slightly wider than shoulder width.  Keep your back and arms straight throughout the movement.
  • Stand with your feet shoulder width or less apart, and bend slightly at the knees (if you find that you have to bend your knees a lot, you might have to work on your hamstring flexibility)
  • While exhaling, lift the barbell up by squeezing your glutes and straightening your hips until you are standing up straight.
  • Lower the barbell again by pushing your hips back and bending slightly at the knees (if your hamstrings are tight, you might have to reduce your range of motion)

Variations

→ See the full leg workout here

[end]Regular or romanian – What’s your favorite kind of deadlift? [/end]

Leg exercise: Bench Jump

bench jump exercise gif/video-back-leg-•-august-2013/

Type Resistance Target (primary) Quadriceps Target (secondary)  CalvesGlutesHamstrings
Equipment Bench/box Mechanics Compound
Force Push
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Unilateral

Aka bench sprint

How is it performed?

  • Start out with one foot on the ground and the other on top of a bench or similar, heel close to the edge.
  • Use your raised leg to push yourself up and extend your knee, then land with the opposite foot on the bench and repeat.

See the full leg workout here.

[end]What’s your favorite leg exercise? [/end]

Leg Exercise: Dumbbell Rear Lunge

Dumbbell Rear  Lunge

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Quadriceps Target (secondary) HamstringsGlutesCalvesHip adductor
Equipment Dumbbells
Mechanics Compound
Force Push
Plane of motion Sagittal plane 
Other Unilateral

How is it performed?

  • Start out by holding a dumbbell in each hand, arms down the side.
  • Take a long step back with one leg while bending the other and keeping your torso upright.
  • Do not let the knee of the supporting leg go beyond your toes. Lower until knee of your rear leg almost touches the floor.
  • Then extend your hip and knee back to starting position.

Take a long lunge and press back to starting position with your heel to focus on the glutes.

Take a short lunge and push back with the ball of your feet to focus on the quadriceps.

See the full leg workout here.

[end]Are lunges a part of your leg workout? [/end]

Leg Exercise: One Leg Romanian Deadlift

One Leg Romanian Deadlift

Type Resistance
Target (primary)  Glutes Target (secondary) HamstringsHip adductor
Equipment Dumbbells Mechanics Isolation Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane Other Unilateral

How is it performed?

  • Start out by holding a dumbbell in one hand and stand on the opposite leg, knee slightly bend.
  • Bend over with your hips while keeping your back straight, your shoulder blades retracted and the dumbbell near your thigh and shin as you slide it down.
  • How low you can go depends on hamstring flexibility.

The single leg romanian deadlift puts lets stress on the lower back compared to the romanian deadlift due to the reduction in weight.

See the full leg workout here.