5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell

5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell


January 22, 2022

If you are looking for how to develop tone and sculpted legs, barbell leg workouts can help you achieve this.

This piece of equipment comprises mainly of a standard Olympic bar to which additional weight plates may be added based on the complexity of the exercises.

Leg toning exercises strengthen the legs and thighs. It might also include stretching, which can assist in making the legs leaner and more muscular.

For the best results, your workout regimen must incorporate weightlifting exercises to grow muscle and stay healthy.

Here are some leg workouts with barbell equipment you can try.

Top 5 Leg Workouts with Barbell

#1 Barbell Squats

5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell

The barbell squat is among the incredible workouts for building leg muscle. It is one of the most productive full-body workouts available today.

It’s easy to assume that barbell squats only work the lower body. But this exercise also works the muscles in the upper body.

Squatting with a barbell is also a complex movement. It is classified as an intricate movement since it engages many body components.

All leg muscles are involved in the barbell squat, including the hamstrings, glutes, quadriceps, calves, thighs, and stabilizer muscles.

It also involves upper body muscles, including the chest, biceps, triceps, abs, shoulders, and even the back.

Doing squats with a barbell can also help to improve your core. Developing a stronger core means that you can lift and stabilize heavier weights.


  • Reduces calories: The barbell squat is a calorie killer, whether you’re squatting for endurance, size, or strength. This leg workout should rank high on your list if you want to burn more calories, burn fat, and develop more muscles.
  • Develops Your Legs: The potential to improve lower body strength and general muscular mass is one of the most evident effects of squats.
    That’s because the squat is the only exercise that allows you to raise such a heavy load while simultaneously engaging multiple muscles.
  • Increases Flexibility/Mobility: Squats can improve lower-body mobility, particularly in the hips.
    This may help you develop anything from your posture to your ability to perform better on other exercises. It also improves your flexibility to move about more freely in everyday life or when participating in sports.
  • Improves Joints Connection: It also improves tendons and ligaments, which helps protect your knees, ankles, and back from injuries.
    To top it all, this workout also strengthens and densifies bones. This can prevent osteoporosis.

How to Perform Barbell Squats

  1. Spread your hands wider apart and hold the barbell
  2. Bend underneath the bar and place it on your trapezius muscle rather than the top of your neck vertebrae
  3. Stand up and move backward a little before standing firmly
  4. Now spread your legs to remain stable
  5. Bend into a squat by pulling your hip back and bending your knees
  6. Do this until your quadriceps is parallel
  7. To get up, thrust through your heels. That is your first rep.
  8. Do at least 8 to 13 reps

#2 Barbell Lunges

5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell

When done correctly, the lunge works quite a number of muscle groups. This includes the quadriceps, inner and outer thighs, hips, and glutes.

It also engages the groin muscles, calves, hamstrings, and just about every muscle in between.

Let’s not forget the static effort your upper torso makes to keep your body erect during this exercise.

One thing is for sure: this workout will put your heart, lungs, stamina, flexibility, and power to the test!

If you’re a newbie, though, you might want to start lunges without the weights.

To avoid injuries and reap the advantages of this exercise in toning and shaping your lower body, it is also critical that you complete the reps and maintain proper form while making the lunge.

Correctly doing the lunge exercise will improve your lower body by strengthening your leg muscles, notably your quadriceps and hips.


  • Improves Your Posture: It enhances your balance and stamina. Plus, it helps improve your overall posture.
  • Enhances Your Major Muscles: It also works on abdominals, back muscles, gluteal muscles, quadriceps, and hamstrings.
  • Helps Reduces Weight: Lunges work the muscle groups in your lower body, resulting in robust muscle growth and fat loss. You may burn more calories and reduce weight by raising your resting metabolism.

How to Perform Barbell Lunges

  1. Place the bar where your traps and upper back meet – roughly 3 or 4 inches below your neck. It would help to put the bar where you are most at ease.
  2. Loop your arms beneath and behind the bar. Take a couple of steps back from the power rack.
  3. Lunge forward with your right foot, keeping your chest high and head straight, while maintaining a slight arch in your back.
  4. Initially, your stance is shoulder-width. Maintain the same distance when lunging out. Avoid the mistake of putting one foot in front of the other as it can make you lose balance.
  5. Lunge out and ensure that your forward knee goes precisely over your forward foot as you drop. Do not allow your knee to go inward or outward. Instead, maintain it directly above the lead foot.
  6. Push back with your front leg and return to the upright position just before your trail knee contacts the ground.
  7. Repeat the movement by lunging forward with your left foot. That is one rep.

#3 Deadlift

5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell

The deadlift is an excellent leg exercise for increasing leg strength and lean muscle mass. Compared to the squat, the deadlift emphasizes the glutes and hamstrings rather than the quadriceps.

Also, the deadlift strengthens the lower back to a greater extent compared to lunges and squats.

A strong lower back is critical for runners and jumpers, yet it is sometimes overlooked in training programs.

The deadlift exercise is especially beneficial for athletes who participate in sports and helps to improve posture.

The increased grip and wrist strength is a secondary effect of the deadlift, and this can be very helpful for athletes who wield rackets, bats, clubs, or balls.


  • Improves Your Grip Strength: This exercise can assist you in developing considerable grip strength.
    You may improve your grip strength in various ways. This is because the lift may be done in multiple ways.
    You can use a barbell, a kettlebell, a medicine ball, or a diamond bar to complete this exercise.
    There are several variations, and the lift may even be done with just one arm. Hand strength is substantially improved by gripping and pulling weight off the ground!
  • Increases Your Core Strength: With the deadlift, your core midsection is heavily engaged for both spinal stability and the ability to quickly tension your body to bear the load you’re going to raise.
    It’s all about core strength when it comes to core tension!
    This is how you can boost your total strength growth to new heights. If you want to build a strong core, go all out on the deadlift!
  • Speeds up Metabolism: Your metabolic rate is determined by the amount of lean muscle mass you have in your body. This is essential for remaining fit and powerful.
    Because the deadlift engages so many major muscle groups, you’ll experience a considerable increase in perceived exertion, which will speed up your metabolism.

How to Perform Deadlift

  1. Place yourself in front of the weighted barbell, with your feet about hip-width apart. Using an overhand hold, grab the barbell. On heavy sets, only use wrist-straps or an alternate grip if necessary.
  2. Lower your buttocks (but not as low as you would in a squat) to begin the action with your legs.
  3. Maintain a flat back and fix your eyes on a place high on the wall (this will assist you in maintaining a flat back) while you steadily draw the bar up.
  4. The bar should be very near or touching your legs as you pull.
  5. Allow your shoulders to go back to their normal posture at the peak of the action.
  6. Slowly return the bar to the floor and repeat.

#4 Sumo-Style Deadlift

5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell

The exercise is identical to the standard deadlift, except the grip is slightly wider than shoulder-width.

This is one of the leg workouts with barbells that primarily target muscles in the lower part of the body.


  • Strengthens the Quadriceps: The inner and outer quadriceps and the inner hamstrings are used more in the sumo-style deadlift. This will help you strengthen your quadriceps and inner hamstrings.
  • Improves Multiple Muscles: The sumo-style deadlift can improve the glutes, hamstrings, lower back, trapezius, and back muscles.

How to Perform Sumo-Style Deadlift

  1. Stand in front of a weighted barbell and place your shins on it with your toes pointed outward. Your feet should be nearly twice as wide as they are during a regular deadlift.
  2. Squat down with your legs and hips bent as if sitting in a chair, and hold the bar with an alternate grip (one hand facing forward and the other facing back). Keep your back straight, and your thighs should be parallel to the ground.
  3. Drag the bar up to your thighs until your knees are entirely stretched, then press through the floor. Bring your shoulders back and hold for a second.
  4. Return down the same path, holding the bar close to your body the entire time. Allow the barbell to rest on the floor before beginning your next repeat.

#5 Stiff-Legged Deadlift

5 Effective Leg Workouts With Barbell

The stiff-legged deadlift is among the best exercises you can do for your hamstrings. This exercise helps target the hamstring, glutes, and lower back muscles.


  • Increases Stamina: A stiff-legged deadlift is an example of a workout that pushes you beyond your limits. You will get lots of stamina in addition to core development.
  • Prevents Potential Injuries: Doing this exercise can minimize the risk of tendons and ligament damage. This is because deadlifts allow you to develop strong muscles that support your joints.
  • Increases Testosterone Levels: Testosterone is a significant hormone for men since it is responsible for most physical characteristics.

Anyone looking to boost their testosterone levels might consider doing a deadlift. Testosterone helps muscles develop and heal themselves.

How to Perform Stiff-Legged Deadlift

  1. Place two 25-pound weight plates (or as much as you can lift) against each other on the ground; one for each foot. They should be placed side-by-side beneath the barbell so you can lay your feet on them.
  2. Place your feet half on the plates and half off the ground in front of the barbell. The plates will be on the front of your feet, while your heels will be on the floor.
  3. Using the weight plates, brace your feet so that your toes are up in the air and your feet are slightly bent up.
  4. Bend over and clench the bar with an overhand hold about shoulder-width apart. While performing this exercise, keep your knees locked but slightly bent and your lower back in a tight arch.
  5. While ascending and descending, keep your gaze straight ahead. This will help you in maintaining a lower back arch.
  6. Squeeze the bar gently and deliberately off the ground, only coming up until your upper body is barely above parallel. Any higher and you’ll start to lose hamstring tightness, which will put a strain on your lower back.
  7. Slowly lower yourself, making sure to maintain the arch in your lower back. Stick your butt out and attempt to elevate your toes as high as possible as you get closer to the bottom. This significantly increases the stretch of your hamstrings.
  8. Hold the stretch for a few seconds before reversing the direction without bouncing.
  9. Do at least 5 to 7 reps.

Place the barbell down gently after the set, and then prepare to grip anything for support.

Your hamstrings will undoubtedly feel like jelly if you’ve done this technique correctly and intensely, and you may find yourself tumbling down unexpectedly.



Justin Rodriguez has spent most of his adult life inspiring people to take their fitness more seriously. He is not new to the business of providing practical solutions for those looking to set and smash their fitness goals. From sharing professional tips and tricks to recommending awesome products, Justin Rodriguez helps just about anyone who wants to get the best out of their workout routines.Having gathered a lot of experience both in and outside the gym, Justin Rodriguez uses DSW Fitness as a medium to show you exactly how to get that great-looking body with toned muscles you’ve always wanted.