The Top 6 Dumbbell Quad Exercises of All Time

In a series of dumbbell home workout, today I’m going to share with you the best quad exercises you can do with dumbbells. I’ll share a total of 6 dumbbell quads workouts that you can do at home as well as in the gym.

The Quadriceps or quad is one of the largest muscles of the human body. It is located in front of the thighs. Basically, it is made up of four different muscles: the vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, vastus intermedius, and the rectus femoris.

They are responsible for most of the important day to day activities such as walking, jogging, running, sprinting, cycling, squatting, and maintaining balance.

So, being the largest muscles of the human body it is important to strengthen it through exercises. Although, there are several exercises you can do to increase your quad strength. For example, you can do the quad workout using a barbell, machines, dumbbell and kettlebell. But most of the fitness enthusiasts don’t have access to the fancy gym equipment. All they have is some pair of dumbbells and a workout bench at their home. So if you’re one of those then this article is especially for you.

Best Dumbbell Quad Exercises

  1. Dumbbell Front Squat
  2. Dumbbell Lunges
  3. Bulgarian Split Squat
  4. Goblet Squat
  5. Dumbbell Deadlift
  6. Step-up
Dumbbell Quad Exercises

1. Dumbbell Front Squat

The front squat is one of the must-do workouts for the leg, especially for the quads. According to a study conducted in 2009 by the Journal Strength and Conditioning; the front squat may be beneficial for the people with knee problems such as meniscus tears as well as advantageous for long-term joint health.

How to do front squat with dumbbells

  • Grab a pair of dumbbells with a neutral grip, stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart and place the dumbbells on your shoulders with your palms facing each other.
  • Keep your core tight, take a breath and bend your knees, and slightly push your hips back to lower down into squat position (lower down until your thighs become parallel to the ground).
  • Hold for a second then slowly stand straight squeezing through the glutes. That’s one rep! reverse the steps to perform the next repetition.
  • Do as many reps as possible but try at least 45, 15 each set with 2 minutes rest between sets.

2. Dumbbell Lunges

The lunges are the great lower body workout. They activate and engage each muscle of the lower body such as quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves.

There are mainly two types of lunges; forward luges and the reverse lunges. Both are important for improving hip mobility and strengthening the overall lower body.

Quad Exercises with Dumbbell
Pic Source: Everkinetic / CC BY-SA (Edited)

a) Dumbbell Stationary Lunges

  • Grab a pair of dumbbells with a neutral grip, stand upright with your feet hip-width apart. And hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing the body.
  • Now, take one long step forward with your right feet and bend your left knee at 90 degrees, so that your both knees are bent.
  • Pause for a couple of seconds then return into the standing position. That’s one repetition.
  • Repeat the same steps for the next rep and complete minimum of 30 repetitions (each side) in three sets with 2 minutes rest between sets.
  • Make sure you hold the dumbbells by your sides throughout the movement.

b) Dumbbell Reverse Lunges

  • Grab a pair of dumbbells with your hands with a neutral grip and stand tall in the hip-width stance. And hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing the body.
  • Now, take one large step backwards with your right feet and bend at 90 degrees, so that your both knees are bent.
  • Wait for a couple of seconds in that position then slowly return into the standing point. That’s one repetition. Hold your arms straight at your sides throughout the movement
  • Repeat the same steps for the next rep and complete minimum of 30 repetitions (each side) in three sets with 2 minutes rest between sets.

3. Dumbbell Quad Bulgarian Split Squat

The Bulgarian squat is one of the important lower body workouts which works on several muscles of the leg including quads, hamstrings and the glutes.

The other important advantages of doing Bulgarian squat is that it put less stress on the lower back as well as improve core strength.

How to do Bulgarian Split squat with dumbbell: step by step instructions

  • Grab one dumbbell in each hand with a neutral grip and stand straight in the hip-width stance and hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing your body.
  • Place your right foot on a bench with your heel facing upward. And make sure your feet are about three feet apart. That’s the starting position.
  • Now, bend your knees and lower your hips toward the ground so that your right knee comes close to the floor.
  • Wait for a couple of seconds in that position then squeeze through your left heel to return to the standing position. That’s one repetition. Hold your arms straight at your sides throughout the movement
  • Repeat the same steps for the next rep and complete minimum of 30 repetitions (each side) in three sets with 2 minutes rest between sets.
  • Keep your chest up during the movement.
  • Do not let your knees grounded.

4. Dumbbell Goblet Squat

The dumbbell goblet squat is quite an important exercises for the lower body including quads for many reasons.

It helps you build solid leg, stronger core as well as increased mobility and reduce the risk of injuries.

Quad dumbbell exercises
dumbbell exercises for quad

How to perform Dumbbell Goblet Squat

  • Begin with standing straight in the shoulder-width stance along with holding a dumbbell with your hands. Grip the head of the dumbbell with your both hands and hold it vertically close to your chest.
  • Keeping your back straight and core tight squat down until your thighs and glutes become parallel to the ground.
  • Hold for a second at the bottom then drive through your heels to return to the standing position. . That’s one rep! reverse the steps to perform the next repetition.
  • Do as many reps as possible but try to complete a minimum of 45 repetitions in three sets with 2 minutes rest between sets.

5. Dumbbell Deadlift For Quad

Deadlifts is considered as the king of workout because it’s effectiveness on the overall fitness. Barbell deadlift is great but dumbbell deadlift is also not bad.

There are several benefits of deadlifts such they promote muscles growth, burn more calories than other traditional weight training, enhance endurance as well as increase stamina, strength and power.

How to do dumbbell deadlift

  • Place a pair of dumbbells on the floor in front of you and stand straight in the shoulder-width stance.
  • Keeping your back straight and core tight, slightly bend your knees and push your hips back to lower down to lift the weights.
  • Then slowly return to the standing position. That’s one rep!
  • To perform the next rep repeat the same steps without leaving the dumbbells on the ground. Do as many repetitions as you like but try to complete a minimum of 20 repetitions in three sets with 2 minutes rest between sets.
  • Maintain your back flat during the movement.

6. Dumbbell Step-up

Being a unilateral leg workout, the dumbbell step-up provides multiple benefits such as it improves balance, increase strength that helps you perform more squats and deadlift as well as it also put less pressure on the lower back.

How to perform Dumbbell Step-Up

  • Grab one dumbbell in each hand with a neutral grip and stand straight in the hip-width stance in front of the step-up box or something where you can do step-up.
  • Hold your arms straight at your sides with your palms facing your body.
  • Now take one step up with your right leg on the box and push through your right foot to raise your body stand straight on the box. Then reverse the movement to complete one rep.
  • Do as many repetitions as you like but try to complete a minimum of 30 repetitions in three sets with 2 minutes rest between sets.

Why training the quadriceps (quads) is important?

  1. According to the Yoga Journal, The quad muscles are important for knee and hip extension that’s why it’s important to strengthen your quad muscles. Because strong quads prevent knees injuries, strains and tears.
  2. Quads are also responsible for running, jumping, squatting and walking. That’s why strengthening the quad muscles is important for improving the overall fitness activities. For example, it improves sprinting, squatting, deadlifting, running etc.
  3. According to an article published on the Popsugar website, Quads are important for runners because strong quads improve running speed, reduce the risk of injuries and stretching quads keeps them loose and flexible for your runs.

Related: Different Types Of Squat Variations And Benefits


Final Words

Training the quads is quite important for overall fitness and being one of the largest muscles in the human body It’s easier to activate with the dumbbell exercises. Although machine and barbell are the important equipment for quads workout but in the absence of those equipment dumbbells works best for you.

Dumbbells allow a greater range of motion and help you target each muscle effectively and deeply. So include these dumbbell quad exercises in your overall workout routine and train consistently for the better result.

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