Try these quad exercises to get stronger thighs

Posted by for Strong Women

Burn your thighs with these muscle building quad exercises.

A lot of the workouts you’ll see online target the posterior chain – the muscles at the back of the body such as the glutes and hamstrings. For good reason: these muscles tend to ‘switch off’ because we spend so much time sat on them. 

“However, it’s still so important to train the front of your body along with your glutes and hamstrings, otherwise your body will be imbalanced and that can result in injuries,” explains Emma Obayuvana, Strong Women ambassador. 

The muscles at the front of your legs (the thighs) are called the quadriceps. We can target them with specific moves or adapt exercises to become more ‘quad dominant’, so the weight travels through the front of the leg more intensely. 

At the gym, you can do this using the leg press machine and the leg extension. But until the gym opens, these three moves can be done at home for a quad burning workout.

Woman doing a front squat
What happens in your mind when you focus your body?

Front squat

“Racking the barbell or dumbbells at the front will engage your quads more than in a back squat,” explains Emma Obayuvana. “Place the weight near your collarbone and as you lower down consciously drive the elbows up, keeping your chest and head tall.”

Bulgarian split squat

“Elevate the rear foot on a bench, or if you’re at home use a stool, a chair, a sofa, a bed or whatever you can find,” says Emma. “Then keep your torso upright as you bend the front knee and drive back up through the heel.” Work the quad further by holding dumbbells at your side or playing with tempo: “For example, go down for three counts and up for one, or add a pause at the bottom of the movement.”

Lean backs

“This works the core, but I feel it in my quads so much when I go at a slow and controlled tempo,” says Emma. “Come onto your knees and sit upright. Place your arms in front of you as you slowly lean back as far as you can go, then drive yourself up through the legs.”

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Images: Getty

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