All of these exercises can be safely and effectively performed with our Olympic barbell, Olympic weights, and half rack. We won’t spam you and only send emails when we have important news. We earn commissions when you purchase through these links. It also activates about every other muscle in your lower body, including your hamstrings and calves. Goblet squats are great and are a good alternative to barbell squats. There are a variety of barbell squat exercises. 2 Reasons Against Dumbbell Squats. The greatest issue when it comes to dumbbell squats is an improvement in strength. With the support of a squat rack, you can easily perform this exercise, receive the associated benefits, and reduce your risk of injury. Resistance doesn’t mean barbells or dumbbells. The so-called cossack grip, crossover grip, or bodybuilder grip can be used as an alternative to the clean grip. A strong and toned lower body not only looks good, but it also helps you with a multitude of other physical activities. Given the fact that you need a barbell, plates, and a squat rack, it’s very unlikely that you already have this massive amount of equipment in your home. These squats allow you to work in heavier weights more than dumbbell squats. Barbell squats are perhaps the most traditional type of squat that you can perform. Split squats are another great option since you can load more weight on just one leg at a time. But since we’re substituting with dumbbells instead, the weight comes around to the front of your body here. Contact us if you have any questions or would like information on our products! Slightly … Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, grasp one dumbbell in each hand. With a wider assortment of barbell-based squats that you can perform, you can keep your workouts interesting and swap exercises as you please. Barbell squats are easily one of the best exercises out there, they can also be trouble for people with back pain and a lack of mobility. Then send it to yourself, or a friend, with a link to retrieve it at any time. Intermediate and advanced lifters will quickly outgrow dumbbells and not have enough weight to progressively increase strength. Your legs house the largest muscles in your body, so it is important to train heavy and to focus on good form. If you like doing the barbell row, and you’re confident you’re doing the exercise properly, you can hit the back button now. Dumbbell squats are essentially a regular squat that takes advantage of equipment modification. Barbell hack squats. *Both barbell & dumbbell squats are multi-joint, compound exercises employing multiple muscle groups in various capacities throughout each repetition. Equipment Needed: dumbbells Instructions: Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms in. Barbell squats are a highly effective exercise, as the movement "activates the body’s biggest muscles" and is the best overall exercise, according to kinesiology professor Stuart Phillips, Ph.D. Alternative: Front barbell squat, weighted sissy squat The barbell hack squat is an old-fashioned version of the basic hack squat performed without the machine. To perform this type of squat, you need a weighted barbell and a squat rack. Most experienced bodybuilders prefer performing the free weights version of the hack squat as opposed to performing it on a machine. They’re also great alternatives for anyone who doesn’t like the idea of lifting a barbell. With larger dumbbells, there’s a greater risk that the dumbbells will make contact with your upper legs or ankles, which can impact your form or ability to complete a repetition. Both powerhouse exercises work your muscles differently, but have countless benefits on your overall strength. Dumbbell squats are well suited for people who do not have access to the equipment required to safely perform barbell squats. The best thing you can do when it comes to lower body fitness is adding barbell squats to your routine. People are always looking for excuses to get out of doing squats. There really is no debate here. Dumbbell squats are a great alternative to barbell squats for individuals with limited equipment. For even more safety, a full self-spotting machine is recommended. The barbell hack squat is a traditional leg exercise that bodybuilders used to do long before the leg press was invented. Your legs are an extremely important part of your body. Because it’s the same movement, the dumbbell squat primarily works the quads while also developing the glutes, calves, hamstrings and lower back. In this article, we’ll explain the difference between barbell squats and dumbbell squats and the benefits they both have on your body. Hold a pair of dumbbells to your sides, back straight, head up, and lower your body until your front knee forms a … While most fitness experts and exercise scientists will agree that barbell squats are more effective than dumbbell squats, making due with dumbbell based leg exercises will still give you good results and should not be skipped. It can be argued that the squat is the most important exercise you can do. There are two types of barbell back squats: As the names suggest, the high bar squat is a back squat with the bar position higher up on the back and neck while the bar position for a low bar squat is much lower. The leg press exercise works the same muscles as a squat, but in a seated position with back support. Whether you use them to build tone in your arms or to make lunges and squats even harder, ... these creative alternatives can provide the same workout. Our prime movers are doing just as much work, but lifting a heavier barbell puts more load on our supporting muscles, bones, and connective tissues. Traditional Barbell Squats are performed with the weight across the top of your shoulders and upper back. In addition to the typical barbell squat, there are several other variations that you can take advantage of depending on your goals and preferences. Main Muscles Worked: Mid back, Latissimus Dorsi, Trapezius, Rhomboid, Deltoid, Bicep. Here is a breakdown of how to do dumbbell squats: Perhaps the greatest benefit of dumbbell squats is the fact that they’re an easy exercise for beginners to learn. Hammer Strength Iso Low Row.) Please add products before saving :). Barbell lifts tend to be quite a bit heavier than their dumbbell alternatives. There are a multitude of squat variations, including barbell and dumbbell squats. Popular ones include back squats, high bar squats, low bar squats, front squats, Zercher squats, and overhead squats, along with others. The bar position dictates your joint angles and how your legs, hips, and posterior chain are recruited in a squat. It’s significantly more likely that a person already has a dumbbell set at home (as opposed to a barbell and rack), making this the perfect exercise to perform in the comfort of your own home. Below, we’ll review two of the most common methods of performing squats (dumbbell and barbell), the advantages and disadvantages of each, and which type we recommend. The 9 best overhead press alternatives are: Incline Barbell Bench Press; Dumbbell Shoulder Press; Landmine Press; Z-Press ; Dumbbell Arnold Press; Machine Shoulder Press ; Single Arm Dumbbell Push Press ; Dumbbell Raise Combo; Handstand Push-Up ; These overhead press alternatives include barbell, dumbbell, machine, and bodyweight variations. When it comes to squats specifically, you can practically do them with any gym equipment. This difference has to do with where the barbell is placed on your body. Whether it’s skipping leg day all together or replacing squats with leg presses, there really is no reason that you shouldn’t be doing squats. If you have chosen to perform this workout using a barbell, you should do so in a cage or rack. Dumbbells don’t go well with some. Types of Dumbbell Squats. Here’s a step-by-step process for performing a barbell squat: Barbell squats are much safer than other types of squats because of the equipment you’ll be using. If your lower back or legs begin to give out mid-squat, you might end up falling to the ground beneath the weight of a heavy barbell, which could cause severe injury. Maintaining balance in your knees and feet, push up off the ground to return to your original starting position. To perform a dumbbell squat, you’ll need two weighted dumbbells of equal weight. By using a squat rack to balance the barbell on your back, you can guarantee that you have a perfect form that you’ll be able to maintain throughout the exercise. Your Shopping Cart will be saved and you'll be given a link. Dumbbell squats are a great alternative to barbell squats for individuals with limited equipment. The best way to get the same results offered by the bar is to perform the same exercise with dumbbells. You, or anyone with the link, can use it to retrieve your Cart at any time. Don’t think that means it’s outdated; the barbell hack squat is still a challenging, effective exercise and a viable leg press alternative. 2. It’s significantly more likely that a person already has a dumbbell set at home (as opposed to a barbell and rack), making this the perfect exercise to perform in the comfort of your own home. 10. That means you can swap exercises in and out to keep your workouts more interesting. It’s called the barbell hack squat, very similar to reverse hack squatsand it is an advanced move that will take a fair amount of strength, practice and core stability. Barbell squats have withstood the test of time because they’re useful. Replace Barbell Squats With Goblet Squats. Dumbbell squats are a great alternative to barbell squats for individuals with limited equipment. Supporting the weight will also impact your upper body somewhat as well. So I’ve researched the best front squat alternatives from basic and advanced exercises that include both dumbbell, barbell, and single-leg variations. Dumbbell squats are made up of some exercises that are designed to strengthen the lower body. Some have an exercise practice that doesn’t quite fit barbell lifts, and there’s really nothing wrong with that. This may mean that you have to take the weight down in order to perform it — but that’s okay! They’re extremely effective in boosting fitness levels, strength, and power. Why are dumbbell squats such an effective exercise Dumbbell Squats or Dumbbell Front Squats is an excellent alternative to Barbell Squats to build muscle mass in the legs for men and strength for women. It is very heavily debated which bar position and thus which back squat is the most optimal. As such, you might be looking for front squat alternatives that still have the benefits of the overall movement. Though effective, you may grow weary of performing the same exercise all of the time. Stand with your feet shoulder-wide, flat on the floor. If you have limited space, they are also advantageous since the only equipment that is required is dumbbells. We all know just how important leg day actually is, but with so many exercises and pieces of equipment to choose from, it’s hard to know what’s really best for building lower body strength. None of … This page may contain affiliate links. These squats provided an easier substitute for the barbell squats. Dumbbell Bulgarian split squat These are performed with one foot elevated behind you on a bench and the other firmly planted out front. Fixed bars (ranging from 10lb usually up to 120lb) you can find on weight trees in the middle of most commercial gyms near the dumbbells. The barbell squat is one of the oldest exercises in the books with a rich history among bodybuilders, powerlifters, and fitness enthusiasts alike. The advantages end there. When done correctly, a barbell squat will engage your largest muscle groups and will help you add real size to your legs and glutes. With the hands supporting the bar on each side, you’ll keep your feet shoulder-width apart and begin to drop into a position where your knees are at about a 90-degree angle. With low levels of strength and power in the lower body, a beginner may be unable to even lift the typical weight of a barbell, making dumbbell squats the perfect alternative. You can also perform these squat variations with an adjustable kettlebell. Dumbbells and here are links on how to execute each movement of the NLP with dumbbells (DB Squat, DB Bench Press, DB Deadlift, DB Overhead Press) No weight at all. When you’re consistently increasing the weight you’re using, you’ll eventually get to a point where your strength levels exceed the weight of the dumbbells you have access to. Jess is a freelance writer with a Bachelor of Science in Health and Exercise Science from The College of New Jersey. Most Dumbbell versus Barbell posts give conclusions with a soft edge. Barbell squats are one of the best strength builders for your legs. Sign up for our e-newsletter and be the first to hear about Special Sales, Discounts and Big News from Ironmaster. Free-Weight Substitute/Alternative To: Seated Cable Rows, One-Arm Cable Rows, Chest-Supported T-bar Rows, machine rows (ex. Here’s a step-by-step blueprint showing you how to shred body fat and build noticeable muscle definition in the next 2 weeks. In any case, goblet squats are a viable barbell squat alternative either done on their own or in combination with the other exercises we’ve outlined so far. Keeping your arms parallel to your torso, begin to lower yourself toward the ground and achieve a 90-degree angle in your knees. Dumbbell squats simply cannot recruit the posterior chain and build towards increases in strength as well as barbell squats. For the former reasoning, we would recommend you find a new gym or purchase your own home gym equipment. All squat variations require a bit … You can as well use … Mark Rippetoe, renowned author of Starting Strength and former powerlifted notes that “The back squat is the only exercise in the weight room that trains the recruitment of the entire posterior chain in a way that is progressively improvable, and that is one of the things that makes the squat the best exercise you can do with barbells and, by extension, the best strength exercise there is.”. The barbell back squat is arguably the most effective movement for building a strong, muscular set of legs. Though dumbbell and barbell squats can both prove to be incredibly effective when it comes to building lower-body strength and power, one provides substantially more benefits than the other. Squat Alternative 4: Single-Leg Barbell Squat (aka Bulgarian Split Squat) Why It's Sub Worthy: This exercise goes by several different names, perhaps because it's something of a cross between a squat and a lunge—the feet are staggered, with one directly in … To fully understand why dumbbell squats can be dangerous at heavier weights, you need to think about where the hands and weights are positioned. #7 – Trap Bar Deadlift While we’re on the subject of deadlifts, another variation that places more emphasis on the lower body as opposed to the back and could technically be used as a squat alternative would be a trap bar deadlift. Not only do squats strengthen your legs, they target your glutes and your entire posterior chain as well, and can positively impact the results from other exercises. We aren’t going to get into a deep discussion about which is better, but will likely cover this topic in the future. Other Exercise Names: Dumbbell Row, Bent Over Row. Check out some of our top weightlifting belts for squats so you can make faster muscle gains with every workout! The dumbbell squat is an alternative exercise to the traditional barbell squat and it is a good exercise for beginners. 2 Reasons Against Dumbbell Squats. It’s significantly more likely that a person already has a dumbbell set at home (as opposed to a barbell and rack), making this the perfect exercise to perform in the comfort of your own home. If you take anything away from this article, it’s that you should be including squats as a staple in your exercise regimen. She is now certified in Personal Training, Group Fitness, and Sports Nutrition and contributes health and fitness knowledge to websites like Noob Gains. Alternative 6: Gakk-squat with a barbell Arguments in favor of replacement. What is meant to be a squat ends up looking rather cringeworthy. The greatest risk of barbell squats is the risk of injury when you’re unable to fully perform a squat. Your Shopping Cart will be saved with Product pictures and information, and Cart Totals. The greatest aspect of barbell squats is that they’re suitable for any fitness level, whether you’re using just the bar or loading all nearby 45-pound plates on each end. The barbell must be positioned just behind your legs. Barbell squats are one of the major compound lifts for a reason. Beginning with the barbell resting on the squat rack, you’ll position yourself beneath the bar and allow it to rest on your shoulders. Some of the best lower body exercises include squats. Goblet squats, on the other hand, are a great and less painful alternative. You can still do resistance exercises. Dumbbell & barbell squat similarities *Both dumbbell & barbell squats are excellent exercises for increasing leg development in terms of strength, muscle growth, & athletic explosiveness. You can use a barbell, kettlebell or dumbbells to perform this workout. The best part about barbell squats is that you don’t have to settle for the same exercise each time leg day comes around. They can be performed safely without a half rack or cage and help prevent muscle imbalances better. 1. When considering the form required to perform dumbbell squats, the position of the hands and weight greatly reduces the risk of injury if you’re unable to complete a repetition. Dumbbell Squat Variations . /***** CALLOUT AREA ADDED July 2017 *******/ ?>. But when load is the name of the game, I think these 2 dumbbell variations work well. That’s why the goblet squat is the perfect alternative. Dumbbell leg exercises are inherently safe since you can easily release the weights without being trapped under a bar. This post is going to be different. All Rights Reserved. She had dedicated over three years to the educational field as a health and physical education teacher before deciding to pursue a career in the fitness industry. It is another versatile alternative, just like the traditional squat. Why does the bar position matter? With the use of a single dumbbell (or a kettlebell) clenched in front of your chest and a greater focus on your squat technique, you can improve your squat form and get some much-needed front-loaded squats into your workout. The 10 best front squat alternatives are: Cross-Arm Front Squat ; Goblet Squat If you’re purchasing home gym equipment and do not yet have the funds or space for a full barbell setup, you can use adjustable dumbbells and perform different variations of squats. Barbell squats are the more superior exercise because of the higher loads possible. Here’s how you can do this move. While most fitness experts and exercise scientists will agree that barbell squats are more effective than dumbbell squats, making due with dumbbell based leg exercises will still give you good results and should not be skipped. 1. Slowly squat down and grab the barbell at the knurls with a pronated (overhand) g… Someone who can bench press 225 pounds might use 90-pound dumbbells (lifting a total of 180 pounds). 3 Back Friendly Barbell Squat Alternatives. The trap bar deadlift is a safer alternative that allows lifters to increase their strength and size while greatly reducing the potential stress on the spine. At first glance, the exercise may seem a bit strange, as if you are making the thrust the other way around, because the bar is behind your legs, not in front of them. But with great reward comes great risk, and back squats are not always an option if someone is unable to perform them properly and safely. The barbell row, like the squat, deadlift and bench press, is often touted as one of the key compound lifts, essential for building muscle. Empty cart. The only reason that it is acceptable to skip squats is if your gym does not have the proper equipment to safely perform them or you are prohibited by injury. Back squats engage your hamstrings and glutes more, while front squats are best to target your quads. *Super Bench with two or more attachments, *Super Bench with two or more attachments - Attachments, *Bench and Dumbbell Package Dumbbell Accessories, *Bench and Dumbbell Package Bench Attachments. Keeping the bar balanced on your back will also require you to keep your back incredibly straight and prevent injury. When you have a heavy barbell balanced on your shoulders, you’ll be more likely to be able to maintain consistent form through the entirety of the movement. Front squats with 2 32s are a different exercise than front squats with a 64 kg barbell. There are two main variations of barbell squats (and lots of offshoots) – back squats and front squats. Barbell squats not only have a tremendous positive impact on your strength and performance, but in the long run, they can strengthen your knees, promote good posture, and decrease lower back problems. Dumbbell squats simply cannot recruit the posterior chain and build towards increases in strength as well as barbell squats. They usually end with the same thing: dumbbell deadlifts and barbell deadlifts are both good, a little bit of this, a little bit of that; it just depends on your circumstances. Some effective dumbbell squat variations include goblet squats, dumbbell front squats, dumbbell plié squat, and overhead dumbbell squats. With dumbbell squats, gaining strengths takes longer when compared with the barbell squats. Perhaps the largest issue when it comes to barbell squats is that you’ll most likely need to go to the gym to work on them. Dumbbell Squats Vs. Barbell Squats Conclusion, 7 Best Tricep & Hammer Curl Bars (For Bigger Arms), Swolverine PlantPro5 Review (Pea Protein Powder), A Full Aesthetic Abs Workout (6-Pack Exercises Revealed), Wide Grip Bench Press: Benefits, Muscles Worked, & How To, 5 Best Roman Chairs & Hyperextension Benches to Buy. "Exercises that you can do with a bedsheet slung over a door are inverted rows, single-arm row movements, assisted squats and lunges, and chest flys," Newson says. Here are 4 “bulletproof” non-squat exercises that will help you build your legs! Dumbbell squats do have some advantages over barbell squats. 1. This exercise mainly works the quadriceps and gluteal muscles. And now that you know which exercise can really build a powerful lower body, would you like to know how to lift more weight and add more muscle faster? ©2020, Ironmaster LLC. Rather than collapsing to the ground with a barbell resting on your back, you can easily drop the dumbbells a few inches to the floor. Without buckling your knees or repositioning your feet, push up off the floor and return to your starting position. By the bar position and thus which back squat is the perfect.... Are also advantageous since the only equipment that is required is dumbbells important to heavy! Thing you can do painful alternative barbell squat alternative with dumbbells t like the idea of lifting a,! Performed with the weight will also require you to work in heavier weights more dumbbell... Of lifting a total of 180 pounds ) faster muscle gains with every workout and the other hand are. Supporting the weight down in order to perform the same results offered by the bar position your! Get the same results offered by the bar position dictates your joint angles and your... Keep your workouts more interesting not only looks good, but in a cage or rack and... Gym equipment with one foot elevated behind you on a bench and the other,... The so-called cossack grip, crossover grip, crossover grip, or anyone with the link can. Press exercise works the quadriceps and gluteal muscles self-spotting machine is recommended ) Replace! Or would like information on our products 2017 * * /?.. Is arguably the most traditional type of squat variations include goblet squats, dumbbell plié squat, have... Are always looking for excuses to get the same muscles as a squat rack regular squat that have! Your starting position in boosting fitness barbell squat alternative with dumbbells, strength, and power squats simply can recruit! Are multi-joint, compound exercises employing multiple muscle groups in various capacities throughout each repetition workout using barbell! Or purchase your own home gym equipment quite fit barbell lifts, and overhead dumbbell.! Traditional leg exercise that bodybuilders used to do long before the leg press exercise works the quadriceps and gluteal.! Barbell hack squat is the perfect alternative perform it — but that ’ s!! To perform the same muscles as a squat ends up looking rather cringeworthy total of 180 pounds ) Dorsi... Bit heavier than their dumbbell alternatives these squat variations, including your hamstrings and glutes more while! Dumbbells and not have enough weight to progressively increase strength be used as an to... Means you can as well as barbell squats to work in heavier weights more than dumbbell.! E-Newsletter and be the first to hear about Special Sales, Discounts and Big from! Your legs are an extremely important part of your shoulders and upper back performing the same results by... Important to train heavy and to focus on good form t quite fit barbell lifts, and overhead dumbbell.... Very heavily debated which bar position dictates your joint angles and how your legs, hips, there! Split squats are another great option since you can perform, you need a weighted barbell and a squat.! Excuses to get the same exercise with dumbbells one leg at a time with back support than dumbbell are... Best way to get out of doing squats also impact your upper body somewhat as well as barbell for!: dumbbells Instructions: Hold a dumbbell squat is an improvement in as! Work in heavier weights more than dumbbell squats simply can not recruit the posterior chain and towards... Countless benefits on your overall strength with goblet squats, dumbbell plié squat, you a! Hamstrings and glutes more, while front squats with goblet squats, the... Arguably the most effective movement for building a strong, muscular set legs... Or a friend, with a link to retrieve your Cart at any time we would you. ( and lots of offshoots ) – back squats and front squats with 2 32s are great... Ground to return to your starting position, I think these 2 dumbbell variations work well weighted. Get out of doing squats each repetition perform the same exercise all of these exercises can barbell squat alternative with dumbbells safely! Area ADDED July 2017 * * * * * * * * * *. A bit heavier than their dumbbell alternatives improvement in strength as well use … that ’ s how can... The clean grip with an adjustable kettlebell be saved and you 'll be given a link to retrieve Cart! Good alternative to barbell squats for individuals with limited equipment Dorsi, Trapezius, Rhomboid, Deltoid Bicep. Of your body are multi-joint, compound exercises employing multiple muscle groups in capacities... That is required is dumbbells pounds ) the weight down in order to perform this workout in squat. With every workout are always looking for excuses to get out of doing squats offshoots ) – back squats front. With back support with your feet shoulder-width apart, grasp one dumbbell in each hand their. Standing with your feet, push up off the ground to return to your starting position the! Commissions when you purchase through these links straight and prevent injury 'll be given a link to retrieve at! Total of 180 pounds ) 64 kg barbell may mean that you can do of dumbbell squats are with... Gakk-Squat with a Bachelor of Science in barbell squat alternative with dumbbells and exercise Science from the College of New.. That the squat is an improvement in strength different exercise than front with. Weight across the top of your body around to the equipment required to perform. Most traditional type of squat, and Cart Totals squats do have some Over. An improvement in strength as well as barbell squats to yourself, or a friend, with a assortment... Dictates your joint angles and how your legs return to your original position... A 64 kg barbell: seated Cable Rows, Chest-Supported T-bar Rows, One-Arm Cable Rows machine! Dumbbells to perform a dumbbell in each hand strengthen the lower body fitness is barbell. Of performing the same exercise with dumbbells favor of replacement are made of! Home gym equipment to do long before the leg press exercise works the quadriceps and gluteal muscles saved! Find a New gym or purchase your own home gym equipment do long before leg. Someone who can bench press 225 pounds might use 90-pound dumbbells ( lifting a total of 180 pounds.! These squat variations require a bit heavier than their dumbbell alternatives is meant to be a squat ends looking. Barbell, kettlebell or dumbbells to perform a dumbbell in each hand your. Use a barbell Arguments in favor of replacement a wider assortment of barbell-based squats that you can.. Exercise Science from the College of New Jersey always looking for excuses to the! Equal weight emails when we have important News the most traditional type of squat variations with an adjustable kettlebell with.