Squatting with some heavy plates on a barbell on your back isn't the only way to strengthen and define your glute and quad muscles. In fact, bodyweight exercises performed well and to moderate intensity, like this 10-minute squat challenge, can be a really effective way to start building strength and muscle in your lower body.
You might be a bit of an old hand at the best leg workouts and the best glute exercises but your muscles will start to get too comfortable if you don't increase the intensity of your training when this happens.
This challenge-based workout was designed by a certified personal trainer, Heather Robertson (opens in new tab), and doesn't require any equipment to try it out yourself. It can be done on its own as a quick routine if you're short on time, or it can be used as a workout finisher for example, after this dumbbells leg workout.
There are heaps of different squat variations loaded into this workout so you don't need to worry about getting bored of repeat exercises throughout. You will perform each exercise for 30 seconds each and as it's supposed to be a challenge, there will be zero rest between moves. However, you will get a quick one before moving on to the second and final round.
Watch Heather Robertson's 10-Minute Squat Challenge
The squat is a pretty universal exercise and is used by many to reach their fitness goals. If you want to know, what are the benefits of squats? Well, there are a lot. Not only does this simple and universal exercise work the quadricep and glute muscles but it also engages your core muscle.
Plus, squats are great for improving flexibility. As we get older our muscles, tendons and ligaments lose some of their elasticity. Bending down deep into squats will help you improve the range of motion in your joints and help you limber up.
Once you master how to do squats you can start incorporating Robertson's squat variations into a regular routine. We've listed each exercise she uses below.
- Air Squat
- In + Out Squat
- Sumo Squat
- Sumo Pulses
- Squat Jump + Jack
- Squat Toe Taps
- Curtsey + Squat
- Hold Squat
- Jump Squat
Despite what a lot of people believe, strength exercise is a really effective way to burn calories and lose weight. Just like how you can burn a lot of calories from pedaling on one of the best exercise bikes you can get similar results with resistance training. In a study conducted by scientists at Harvard Medical School (opens in new tab), a person weighing 155lbs (70kg) can burn around 223 calories doing 30-minutes of vigorous strength or weight training, such as squats.
Adding weight to exercises like the squat isn't essential but it can burn fat more efficiently and boost those lean muscle gains. You don't need to lift any crazy weights but adding in a weight like one of the best adjustable dumbbells is a good starting point. These modifiable weights allow you to move up or down weight size as you train.
Jessica is Staff Writer at Fit&Well. Her career in journalism began in local news and she holds a Masters in journalism. Jessica has previously written for Runners World, penning news and features on fitness, sportswear and nutrition.
When she isn't writing up news and features for Fit&Well covering topics ranging from muscle building, to yoga, to female health and so on, she will be outdoors somewhere, testing out the latest fitness equipment and accessories to help others find top products for their own fitness journeys. Her testing pairs up nicely with her love for running. She recently branched out to running 10Ks and is trying to improve her time before moving on to larger races. Jessica also enjoys building on her strength in the gym and is a believer in health and wellness beginning in the kitchen. She shares all of this on her running Instagram account @jessrunshere which she uses for accountability and for connecting with like-minded fitness lovers.
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