The barbell squat is an excellent exercise that works all of your leg muscles to some degree and the lower back, with the main focus being on the quads.
Even if you don’t do any other leg exercises, make sure you try to incorporate the barbell squat.
This exercise is best performed using a squat rack and an Olympic bar.
Alternatively you could get someone to help raise a fixed weight barbell onto your shoulders.
Major Muscles Targeted: Quads
Other Muscles Used: Calves, Glutes, Hamstrings, Lower Back, Core
- Weightless squat
- Barbell bench squat
- Dumbbell squat
Do’s and Do Not’s
- DO keep looking forward and not down. Looking down can cause you to fall forward. Focus on a spot directly in front of you.
- DO keep your body-weight slightly on your heels.
- DO keep your knees in line with your toes.
- DO NOT allow your knees to extend over your toes.
- DO NOT arch your back as you stand up. This can put unnecessary pressure on your spine.
- DO NOT be tempted to pile on heavy weight, only to perform half squats. Your squats should be controlled and you must perform the full range of movement to get the biggest benefits.
If you have any comments, questions or tips for the barbell leg squat, please drop them below.