Lifestyle

Today’s Workout: Work out your lower body with single leg squat

Single leg squat with side leg lift. [ERNST PETERS/THE LEDGER]
By Marlo Alleva
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Posted: Aug. 2, 2019 12:01 am

Creativity is an important component to not only revive interest, but also to see small changes. This can be applied to nearly everything in life and especially when it comes to fitness. More specifically, our lower body workouts and squats.

Our move today is a single leg squat with a side leg lift. All you need is a clear area to perform this exercise. You can add medium hand weights for intensity, or hold the edge of a chair or countertop for added balance. This exercise will be working your quadriceps, glutes, hamstrings, and inner/ outer thighs.

Begin this exercise by standing tall, holding your chest up, and engaging your midsection for balance. Shift your weight onto one foot, and square your body forward.

Extend your free leg out to your side, keeping it straight and resting your toe on the ground. Once you are in this position, you are ready to move.

Proceed into your one leg squat by bending in the knee that your weight is shifted to. Using the same form as a usual squat, keep your knee behind your toes and push your rear end back. When you reach your deepest squat position, hold it there. Then, with your free leg extended out you will begin to lift it up and down out to your side. Lift it only as high as it is comfortable for you, and lower it just to slightly tap your toe back on the floor.

All the while, hold the single leg squat.

This exercise will challenge your balance and endurance; that is when a chair back or countertop will come in handy or you can hold your hands on your hips, or tuck them into your chest.

Give your self eight to 10 lifts on one side.

Once you reach your desired amount on your starting leg, return to a standing position, take a small break, then proceed to the other leg.

Continue this leg lift squat from side to side for at least three to five sets. Taking a small break in between to help with your endurance.

If you need added resistance, hold a set of handweights in both hands, to create a heavier load in the squatting leg.

This exercise is great for targeting those hard-to-reach areas that regular squats fall slightly short on.

And as always, this exercise is good on its own, when time is limited, or a great addition to your lower body workout.

Marlo Alleva, an instructor at Gold’s Gym and group fitness coordinator at Fontaine-Gills YMCA in Lakeland, Florida, can be reached at faluvzpa@msn.com.

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