Exercises to Build Quadriceps Muscles

The Best Exercises to Build Quadriceps Muscles

Your quads are the muscles on the front of your upper legs, and they’re the ones that give you the power to run, jump, squat, and move quickly. While your calves work with your feet to get you moving, your quads help to keep you moving. If you want to be a better runner – or just a better all-round athlete – it’s important to build quadriceps muscles. Here are the 5 best exercises to build quadriceps muscles:

Barbell Squat

This is the basic exercise to build quads, but it’s one of the most effective. Simply grip the barbell tightly in your hands, clench your shoulders, and squat. It doesn’t take too much effort to learn to do it, but adding the barbell will increase the power required to do the squat.

Be very careful with this one! It’s easy to strain your back if you lean forward, so focus on just bending your knees and squatting straight down. Don’t go too low into the squat, but stop once your knees reach a 90 degree angle.

Kettlebell Squats

For those who want to do squats without having to carry a heavy barbell, using kettlebells can be the way to go. It’s much easier to do the exercise with two kettlebells, and most women prefer to use the smaller kettlebells over the hefty barbell.

This one is easier to maintain proper form, but all the same be sure to avoid squatting too low. Going past the 90 degree angle with your knees can put excess pressure on them, so make sure that you are taking it easy on your knees.


Sprinting for just 500 meters will burn as many calories as you would jogging for 45 minutes. It’s a great way to lose weight, and it will build quadriceps muscles quickly. It will also give you more power for your exercises, so it’s a good workout to do.

For this exercise, you need to be sure to get the form just right. You’re throwing all of your power into the exercise, and there’s a real risk that you can get hurt. Follow the tips in the video to ensure that you are sprinting with the correct form.

Pistol Squat

If you have serious leg power, it’s time to try these incredibly difficult squats. They use just one leg, which means that all of your weight and balance will need to be focused on that single foot. It’s going to be hard at first, but you’ll get it eventually.

There will be a very strong temptation to dip very low into the squat, as your legs may be exhausted. Avoid that at all costs, as that will strain your knees. You’re putting all of your body weight on just one knee, so avoid injuries by doing it right.

Barbell Lunge

Sick and tired of squatting? Why not try some lunges, holding a barbell to add some weight? Doing lunges will help to work out the quads very effectively, as the exercise focuses on dipping down and holding your weight using the front of your legs.

This is another exercise where you need to keep your back perfectly straight, and just use your legs to go down into the dip. If you engage your back muscles, you may end up injuring yourself with the lunge. Also, be sure to stretch your glutes and hamstrings before doing this exercise, as you can pull the muscles opposite your quads if you aren’t careful.



  • For strength gain, do 4 to 6 reps per set.
  • For general fitness, do 12 to 15 reps per set.
  • For endurance and weight loss, do 20 to 25 reps per set.
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