Essential Leg Exercises for Home Workouts

24 Exercises That Develop Leg Strength And Size

As a result of quarantine, many gyms have had to close their doors for the time being. Although this makes building strength and size more challenging, it can still be done.

Although you may not have an extensive home gym, you do not need a large range of equipment to make substantial progress with your training.

Benefits of leg exercises

Leg exercises are great to achieve multi-range of fitness goals, from building muscles to burning more calories, boosting metabolism, building balance and improving your lifts.

Strengthening your lower body not only builds muscle but it also helps to improve performance when you do jumping, running and moreover fewer injuries.

Leg exercise routine, such as Squats, deadlifts also increases testosterone and production of growth hormone as these promote building muscle mass.

Mostly importantly strengthening your hip flexors, glutes and abdominal muscles can also help to prevent lower back pain.

This article will highlight twenty-four home-based exercises that use little or no

equipment to bring about improvements in strength and size.

Home Exercises for Men’s Workouts

1) Squat Jump

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Start with the feet slightly wider than hip-width with toes pointed out
  • Keeping the chest up and core tight, squat until the thighs are parallel to the floor
  • From the bottom position of the squat, powerful drive up and into a jump
  • When landing, ensure that you bend the knees to cushion the impact

2) Side Lunge

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Start by standing tall with the feet place directly under the hips
  • Take a large sideways step with the right leg and plant the foot on the floor
  • Keeping the left leg straight, bend the right knee and push the hips backward
  • Lower the body before pushing hard through the right foot to bring the body back up
  • Take a moment and then repeat on the left side

3) Single-Leg Hip Raise

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Lie flat on the back with the hands placed on the floor by the hips
  • Extend the right leg out and keep the left foot in contact with the floor
  • Keeping the core tight, push hard through the heel of the left foot to lift the hips up
  • At the top of the movement, squeeze the glute muscles tightly
  • Drop the hips back to the floor
  • After completing reps on one side, swap sides and repeat

4) Quick Feet

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Start in a quarter-squat stance with knees slightly bent and chest lifted
  • While maintaining this position, run on the spot using fast steps
  • Ensure that the weight stays to the front of the foot for each step

Home Exercises for Women’s Workouts

5) Bodyweight Squats

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Begin with the feet wider than hip-width with toes pointed out slightly
  • Lift the chest and engage the core muscles
  • Drop the hips back and down towards the floor by hinging the knees and hips
  • Continue to drop until the thighs are parallel to the floor
  • Push hard through the heels to stand up

6) Plié Squat Calf Raises

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Assume a squat stance
  • Push the chest up, activate the core and place hands on the hips
  • Squat down and hold the bottom position
  • From here, roll forward onto the toes, lifting the heels and hold for 1-2 seconds
  • Return the heels to the floor and repeat

7) High Knee Toe Taps

Level: Advanced

Technique:

  • Place a chair or box directly in front of you
  • Start with the right foot on the object
  • From here, jump and quickly swap the legs so that the left foot is on the object
  • Rapidly switch back and forth

8) Side Leg Raises

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Start by lying on your side
  • Extend both of the legs straight out and lift the torso up slightly using your arm
  • From this position, lift the top leg up as far as possible
  • Control it back down to the start position and repeat
  • Once completing reps on one side, alternate sides

Home Exercises for Mass-Building Workouts

9) Walking Lunges

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Start by standing tall, chest up and core tight
  • Step forward with the right leg
  • Bend both knees until the rear knee touches the floor
  • Drive through the heel of the right leg to return to standing
  • Alternate the stepping leg

10) Split Squat

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Begin with the right foot out in front of the body with the left extended behind
  • Drop down until the rear knee touches the ground
  • Push through the heel of the right foot to drive the body back up
  • Once reps have been completed, switch legs and repeat

11) Step Ups

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Place a bench, box or chair in front of you
  • As rapidly as possible step up onto the object with both feet
  • Step back down quickly but under control

12) Squat Pulses

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Begin with the feet slightly wider than the hips
  • Bend the knees and hinge the hips to squat down towards the floor
  • While in the bottom position, let the hips drop and rise a number of times
  • Drive through the heels to rise back up to standing

Home Exercises for Dumbbell Workouts

13) Goblet Squat

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Start by holding a dumbbell tight to the chest with both hands
  • Assume a squat stance, drive the chest up and engage the core
  • Lower into a squat by bending the knees and hips
  • Drive through the heels to bring the body back up to standing

14) Reverse Lunge

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Hold two dumbbells in the hands and place them by the hips
  • Keeping the chest up, take a step back with the right foot
  • Bend the knees so that the rear knee drops to the floor
  • From here, drive hard through the right foot to return to standing
  • Switch legs and repeat the exercise

15) One Legged Calf Raise

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Using a stepper, place one of the feet on the edge of the stepper
  • Hold a dumbbell to the side of the body
  • Raise your body up by flexing the ankle and coming up onto the toes
  • Control the descent, switch sides and repeat

16) Dumbbell Swing

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Begin a stance wider than hip-width
  • Hold one dumbbell in both hands place the hands between the legs
  • Focus on pushing hip hips back and bring the weight back between the legs
  • Drive the hips forward and squeeze the glutes to propel the weight over the head
  • Maintain core tightness and return the weight to the starting position

Home Exercises for Workouts With Weights

17) Suitcase Squat

Level: Advanced

Technique:

  • Start in a squat stance
  • Hold a dumbbell in both hands and keep the weights by the hips
  • Squat down by bending the knees and hinging the hips
  • Push through the heels to rise back up to standing

18) Deadlift

Level: Beginner

Technique:

  • Begin by standing tall with the feet directly under the hips
  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand and place the weights by the hips
  • Drive the chest high, pull the shoulders back and brace the core
  • Focus on pushing the hips back initially before bending the knees slightly
  • Keep hinging until the dumbbells align with the mid-shin
  • Drive the hips through and squeeze the glutes to return to the starting position

19) Curtsy Lunge with Side Kick

Level: Advanced

Technique:

  • Begin with the feet slightly wider than hip-width and with dumbbells in each hand
  • Take a diagonal step backward with the right foot
  • Bend both knees so that the right knee makes contact with the ground
  • Drive hard through the left heel to return to standing
  • As you stand, immediately kick your right leg out to the right side
  • Alternate sides and repeat the exercise

20) Sumo Squat

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Assume a stance that is much slightly wider than hip-width and turn the toes out
  • Hold dumbbells in each hand, drive the chest up and engage the core
  • Bend the knees to drop into a squat
  • Push hard through the heels to stand


Home Exercises for Workouts Without Weights

21) Bulgarian Split Squat

Level: Advanced

Technique:

  • Using a bench or a chair, stand with your back facing the object
  • Extend one leg behind the body and place the foot on the object
  • Lift the chest before bending the front knee to drop down towards the floor
  • Drop down as far as possible while keeping the front foot flat on the floor
  • Drive upward by pushing through the heel of the front foot
  • Complete reps before swapping sides and repeating

22) Single Leg Squat

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Start by stand on one foot ensuring that the foot is directly under the hip
  • Keeping the other leg bent, drop down into a squat and descend as far as possible
  • Keep the core tight and use the arms for balance
  • Once completed on one side, switch sides and repeat

23) Curtsy Lunge

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Begin with the feet slightly wider than hip-width
  • Take a diagonal step backward with the right foot
  • Bend both knees so that the right knee makes contact with the ground
  • Drive hard through the left heel to return to standing
  • Alternate sides and repeat the exercise

Coaching Point:

14) Reverse Lunge

Level: Intermediate

Technique:

  • Hold two dumbbells in the hands and place them by the hips
  • Keeping the chest up, take a step back with the right foot
  • Bend the knees so that the rear knee drops to the floor
  • From here, drive hard through the right foot to return to standing
  • Switch legs and repeat the exercise

Final Word

While not being able to attend the gym can be frustrating, by performing a selection of these home-based leg exercises regularly, you will effectively be able to improve leg strength and muscle size.

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Jacob Ladon
Jacob Ladon is a staff writer and former amateur bodybuilder. He has been passionate about bodybuilding since he was 15 years old and discovered the joys of training in the gym. He reports and comments on all bodybuilding related matters.