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Ultimate Home Gym Leg Workout Guide (Simple & Effective)

Connor Sellers
Published by Connor Sellers | Senior Coach
Last updated: July 11, 2023

As a personal trainer, it may appear unusual that I'm writing about how individuals may work out their legs at home rather than at the gym.

But I wouldn't be accomplishing my duty if I didn't inform our followers and clients about how to maximize leg workouts and get that perfectly toned leg muscle.

Over the years, I've accumulated enough knowledge to assist people and provide guidance on the right and diverse workouts to make a major impact.

Here are a few exercises that will give you that toned leg muscle in no time.

Quick Summary

  • An effective leg exercise should be simple: lunges, standing calf raises, and squats.
  • Compound workouts activate more muscle groups at once, saving time and burning more calories.
  • It is essential to perform leg exercises in a way that brings the muscles to exhaustion but not failure.

Creating Your At Home Leg Workout

Performing squats at home using resistance band

You'll find a few hallmark activities (including bodyweight calf raise, lunges, squats, and deadlifts) with variations throughout these exercises.

These workouts target the primary muscles in the quads, hamstrings, and glutes for a well-rounded leg exercise.

Since we don't move in only one direction, exercising our muscles in several ways is critical.

Compound workouts activate many muscles simultaneously, saving time and burning more calories.

You can establish mobility and strength to support your daily movements by integrating weights, resistance bands, and bodyweight moves.

We recommend practicing a leg-focused exercise two or three times weekly to enable muscle repair while building strength.

You may adjust the range of reps and weight to your specific ability and overall fitness.

Also read: Best Calisthenics Leg Exercises: Stronger Lower Body

Movement Patterns In A Good Leg Day Workout

When it comes to creating an effective leg exercise, simpler is better. Most of your training should consist of simple lower-body activities such as lunges, deadlifts, and squats.

These exercises naturally target the primary leg muscle groups: glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves.

Once you've mastered these moves, there are several variants and methods to advance to keep you challenged.

Here's a simple method to split down your leg exercises when constructing it: Begin with a squat, progress to a hip-hinge action, and finally to single-leg movements.

How Many Reps and Sets Should You Do in a Leg Workout?

Stretching lower body for an exercise routine

As a novice wanting to improve general fitness, stick to 3-5 exercises every leg exercise.

Then perform three sets of eight to twelve reps of each activity, ensuring that you exercise your muscles to exhaustion but not failure [1].

Why only five exercises? You'll be able to concentrate on those basic motions and perform at your best.

Workouts that are too long might be ineffective.

Exercises For Your Leg Workouts

Partners at home stretching their feet for a workout routine

Choose from our best lower-body workout list when designing your next leg exercise.

1. Warm Up

A good workout isn't comprehensive without a nice warmup and cooldown.

Start your warmup with five minutes of light cardio to increase your heartbeat and blood flow. If you have time, spend five minutes on the roller for soft-tissue relief.

Then, begin a dynamic stretching program that includes right and left leg swings, bodyweight squats, lunges, and hip openers.

After your training, you should do a more in-depth stretching regimen.

2. Leg Workouts With Rubber Band

This workout requires simply a resistance band. Training with quality home gym resistance bands might be especially beneficial if you're new to strength training or recuperating from an injury.

Lateral Band Walk

Walking using a resistance band outdoors

The lateral band walking workout appears (and feels) strange, but it's an excellent technique to enhance hip mobility, train the hip abductors (especially the gluteus medius), and promote knee joint stability [2].

How to do it:

  1. Place the band slightly above each ankle, then wrap it around each leg, keeping it flat but not bunched.
  2. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart. The band ought to be tight without being stretched.
  3. To stimulate the gluteus medius, slightly bend your knees and get into a half-squat position.
  4. Maintain a straight line between your feet and shoulders, and look forward with your body mass equally distributed over both legs.
  5. Maintaining your half-squat stance, shift your body weight over one foot and take a lateral stride using the other. Move this foot in and out sideways for eight to ten repetitions.
  6. Maintain your hips level throughout the movement. This workout aids in keeping a low, forward-facing stance. Your back ought to be straight rather than rounded.
  7. Shift your weight slowly and swap legs.

Banded Side Lunge

Woman doing side lunges with a resistance band

This banded gliding lateral lunge is an excellent multi-part motion that works almost every lower body muscle.

How to do it:

  1. With your left foot on the band, grab the handles with an overhand grip. Step to your right and take a deep lunge.
  2. To return, drive up strongly with your right foot. Repeat on the opposite side.

Banded Step-Outs

Doing step-outs using a resistance band

Banded step-outs have a lot of gluteal motion. However, it is very easy to perform this exercise inaccurately and miss the therapeutic intent.

How to do it:

  1. Put the band below your knees. Squat back with your hips and maintain your chest up.
  2. Step your left foot out and then step back in, keeping your feet outside your hips. Repeat on the opposite side

Pro tip: A resistance band could be used at the ankles when the resistance is low, but it should be worn just above the ankle when it is strong.

Wrapping your rubber band around the ankles might increase knee pressure and raise your chance of injury.

3. Leg Workouts With Weights

For this exercise, you may use almost any object that increases weight without affecting your form.

You may use dumbbells, kettlebells, a soup can, or even a weighted backpack [be creative].

Goblet Squat

Doing goblet squats using a dumbbell

Goblet squats primarily engage the quadriceps and glutes.

How to do it:

  1. Standing with your feet slightly outside hip width, and shoulder-width apart, hold the weight or item at the front of your chest.
  2. As though sitting in a chair, drive your hips back and down.
  3. Maintain a high chest and concentrate on your hips breaking beneath your knee gap.
  4. Push into your heels, clench your glutes (your buttocks!), and stand up.

Dumbbell Step-up With A Knee Raise

Holding dumbbells while doing step up on a platform

Step-ups with knee raises are a lower-body workout that works the quadriceps, glutes, and hamstrings.

How to do it:

  1. Hold two weights at your sides and position one leg tightly on top of a bench, chair, or stair.
  2. Drive up into the heel of your lifted leg while keeping your body straight. Push your knee up until it's at the hip level when you're on the bench.
  3. Lower yourself to the starting position under control without putting your other leg on the bench.

"The step up engages your entire leg muscle group, including your glutes, quadriceps, and hamstrings. Because it has minimal impact, it is also an excellent alternative for people who have had knee problems in the past."

- James White, Physical Therapist.

Bulgarian Split Squat

Performing bulgarian split squat inside her room

The Bulgarian split squat is a single-leg squat variation in which the rear leg is raised on a bench or a strong chair.

How to do it:

  1. Put your left foot on a bed, couch, or bench while holding two dumbbells and placing your right leg approximately one meter in front.
  2. Lunge down, maintaining your body upright, until your left knee is about two inches away from the floor. Return to the starting position by driving yourself up.

This exercise puts your front foot through a lot of motion. It's ideal for gaining strength and muscle in a balanced way.


A fit person doing step-ups

Weighted step-ups are great for the legs, and introducing dumbbells raises the weight on the muscles engaged.

How to do it:

  1. Locate a stepping stool, bench, or container. Lift your right leg and place it on the container while holding one dumbbell at your chest.
  2. Maintaining chest up and right shin in a vertical position, move into the right heel and step up onto the box. Keep control as you get to the starting position.
  3. If you do not have a container or other item to step onto, begin kneeling, step your right leg forward, and stand up. Return to a kneeling starting position.

Weighted Hip Bridges

Performing hip bridges

This workout helps to tone your gluteal muscles. It increases the efficacy of your exercise by adding strain to your single-leg glute bridge action.

How to do it:

  1. Lay on your back, having your knees bent and your legs flat on the ground.
  2. Your fingertips ought to be able to reach your heels. In front of your hips, place a kettlebell, dumbbell, or any other object.
  3. Brace your core, clench your glutes, press into your heels, and elevate your hips until your shoulders, knees, and hips are all in line. Return your hips to the ground slowly.

4. Leg Workouts Using Body Weight

All you need for this workout is your own body. Bodyweight training should not be overlooked; it may be just as beneficial for growing muscle, power, and stamina.

Reverse Lunges or Jumping Lunges

An illustration of a woman doing jumping lunges

This exercise works the quadriceps, hamstrings, core, and lower back.

How to do it:

  1. Place your feet just outside the breadth of your hips. Hips should be driven back then down.
  2. Maintain a high chest and concentrate on your hips dropping below your knee gap. Keep your torso upright.
  3. To stand, push into your heels (or jump back up - hopping enhances the intensity and caloric expenditure).

Close-stance Heel-elevated Squat

Doing heel elevated squat

This is a squat development exercise where a heel lift is used to enhance ankle flexion and extension range, allowing the knees to extend past the toes.

How to do it:

  1. Place weighted plates or bricks on the floor, then place the heels on them with your feet hip-width wide.
  2. Lower your body by bending your knees. As you drop, extend your knees.
  3. Go as deep as you can while maintaining your head, back, and pelvis straight, and then back to standing by extending your hips and knees.

Learn More: Heel Elevated Squats: Form, Technique and Benefits

Standing Long Jump

A man doing a standing long jump outside his home

Standing long jumps work the glutes, hip flexors, quads, abs, hamstrings, and calves.

How to do it:

  1. Crouch down into a squat with your feet shoulder-width wide.
  2. Swing your arms back to force yourself forwards, then bring your feet forward for further velocity. Jump as far as you can and rest on your feet's soles.

"Standing long jumps are the best way to develop exploding horizontal power. Strive to jump upward and forward to decrease pressure on your knees."

- Phillip Leonard, Personal Trainer


What Is the Best Home Leg Workout?

The best home leg workouts are squats, single-leg romanian deadlift, and walking lunges, which target most muscles.

Can You Build Leg Muscles at Home?

Yes, you can build leg muscles at home by performing leg workouts at higher reps, utilizing supersets and HIIT circuits.

How Many Squats Should You Do a Day?

There is no number of squats that you should do in a day. It all depends on individual objectives.

Final Thoughts

For the best advantages and outcomes, do a leg workout for four to six weeks. It's essential to keep adding complex and challenging movements to develop muscle continuously.

These workout routines will help increase leg endurance and strength whether you use weighted objects, your body mass, or a resistance band.

I recommend using one of our best smiths machines to maximize your gains further.

They come with various integrated components that may enable you to design full-body exercises targeting all muscle groups.

They also have an excellent leg training system with many functions. You may also use them as a steady object for banded leg workouts.


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