Squats are like the perfect exercise staple and they make your body look pretty amazing. But just like your wardrobe, your fitness routine could use some variety. For an upgrade with major results, try these 7 squat variations.
1. Body-Weight Jump Squat
Place your fingers on the back of your head and pull your elbows back so that they’re in line with your body. (A) Dip your knees in preparation to leap. (B) Explosively jump as high as you can. When you land, immediately squat down and jump again. (C)
2. Pistol Squat
Stand holding your arms straight out in front of your body at shoulder level, parallel to the floor. Raise your right leg off the floor, and hold it there. (A) Push your hips back and lower your body as far as you can. Pause, then push your body back to the starting position. (B)
3. Wide-Stance Barbell Squat
Hold the bar across your upper back with an overhand grip. (A) Perform a squat with your feet set at twice shoulder width. (B)
4. Barbell Siff Squat
Hold the bar across your upper back with an overhand grip. Before you squat, raise your heels as high as you can (A) and hold them that way for the entire lift. (B)
5. Braced Squat
Hold a weight plate in front of your chest with both hands, your arms completely straight. (A) Perform a squat while holding the weight in place. (B)
6. Dumbbell Split Squat
Hold a pair of dumbbells at arm’s length next to your sides, your palms facing each other. Stand in a staggered stance, your left foot in front of your right. (A) Slowly lower your body as far as you can. Pause, then push yourself back up to the starting position as quickly as you can. (B) Switch legs and repeat.
7. Goblet Squat
Hold a dumbbell vertically next to your chest, with both hands cupping the dumbbell head. (Imagine that it’s a heavy goblet.) (A) Brace your abs, and lower your body as far as you can by pushing your hips back and bending your knees. (B) Pause, then push yourself back to the starting position.
(exercises and images via Women’s Health)