Dumbbell leg extension: How-to, Muscles Worked, Benefits

With dumbbells at home, you’ll be able to perform several resistance machine exercises at home, including dumbbell leg extension. DB leg extension is a lower body workout that primarily strengthens your quadriceps.

In this article, I’m going to share everything about dumbbell leg extension, such as which muscles involved, how to perform seated DB leg extension at home, what are its benefits, and more.

Equipment Required: Dumbbell and Workout Bench

Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Types of workout: Strength Workout

Major muscle involved

The primary muscles worked during the leg extension is Quadriceps or Quads.

The quad is one of the largest muscles in the human body and located in the front and the side of the upper leg (between hips and knees).

It has fours sub-muscles, such are:

  1. Vastus lateralis: The vastus lateralis is on the outside part of the front of your leg.
  2. Vastus medialis: This is the “teardrop” on the inside.
  3. Rectus Femoris. This is the muscle on top, right in the center.
  4. Vastus intermedius: It is situated under the rectus femoris muscle.

How to do seated dumbbell leg extension at home

  • Place a dumbbell (in a standing position) on the ground in front of the bench. Sit straight on it with your thighs lie until the edge of the table.
  • Knees are bent at 90-degree so that they can move ups and down.
  • Keep your palms firmly on the bench and tightly grip the edge with your fingers (doing this allows lift the weight efficiently).
  • Now, hold the dumbbell between your feet and extend your knees until your quads are fully engaged (but do not lock your knees).
  • Pause for a couple of seconds in that position and then lower to the start. This is your one repetition.
  • Suggested: Sets – 3, Reps – 10-15

Important points to take care while doing DB leg extension

  1. Try to do max- rep, low-weight sets. Because using a heavier dumbbell may put pressure on your knees and chances of getting injuries becomes high.
  2. Keep your back straight during the whole movement.
  3. Do not perform this movement rapidly. Focus on engaging your quads muscles in every rep.
  4. Do not lock your knees completely at the time of an extension.
  5. And perform this movement with other leg exercises such as squats, lunges, and deadlifts.

You may also like: 8 Best Dumbbell Leg Workout You Can Do At Home


Benefits of DB Leg Extension

  1. Unlike the squat, the Leg extension is an “open-chain kinetic” exercise where you need to move your legs up and down instead of keeping them in a stationary position. Thus, it allows you to target the quads more precisely.
  2. With DB Leg extension, you’ll be able to work on the large muscles of the body at home.
  3. Contrary to Machine Leg Extension, Dumbbell allows you to sit comfortably because it gives you control over a range of motion and sitting position.
  4. DB leg extension strengthens the quadriceps that help you in other activities and sports, such as cycling, soccer, deadlifting, squatting, etc.

Who should avoid it?

If you have any joints, knee, or thigh injury, you should avoid them. But if want to do this movement, take your doctor or trainer consults or perform under their supervision.

Machine vs Dumbbell Leg Extension

Leg extension machine is fixed that allows you to work on quads safely. It controls the excess movement and protects you from injuries. While in DB leg extension, you have control over the movements, so you need to perform the extension properly.

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