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bodyweight legs workout no equipment

how to train legs at home

Stuck at home and not sure how to effectively train your legs with no equipment at all?

The good news is… you don’t have to skip leg day.

And in fact, you definitely shouldn’t!

It IS possible to build strong legs without needing access to a gym.

In fact, you can do every exercise in this bodyweight leg workout with zero equipment in the comfort of your own living room. It’s also ideal for when you’re on a trip away from home or only have a very small space in which to train.

This home leg workout is adaptable to anyone, including beginners, intermediate or advanced. And the best part is that it takes only 20 minutes to do!

It IS possible to build strong legs without needing access to a gym. In fact, you can do every exercise in this bodyweight leg workout with zero equipment in the comfort of your own living room.

You don’t have to be overly reliant on the gym to get those leg gains if you know which bodyweight exercises to do.

And that’s a big IF.  Choosing the most effective no equipment legs exercises is a must if you really want to be able to builld leg muscle and strength.

But I promise, I’ve got you covered. No muscle will be overlooked!

We’re going to train the anterior chain including the quads, the posterior chain and the often-overlooked hips.

Before I show you all the bodyweight leg exercises, I want to explain to you exactly how to perform this home legs workout for best results!

BODYWEIGHT LEG WORKOUT

This home workout will be an APEX style, which combines an anterior chain exercise, a posterior chain exercise and an explosive exercise for the legs done in succession with very little rest.

How long you perform exercises 1-3 of each circuit and the length of your rest time is determined by your level of difficulty:

  • Beginner: Perform each exercise for 15 seconds and rest 15 seconds
  • Intermediate: Perform each exercise for 20 seconds and rest 10 seconds
  • Advanced: Perform each exercise for 25 seconds and rest 5 seconds

After the completion of each circuit, you have 30 seconds to rest before you have to move onto a 2 minute corrective circuit for strengthening the hip muscles. The exercises in this circuit will be performed for the same amount of time regardless of your fitness level.

The hips are often overlooked in legs workouts, but not here!

Weak hips are almost always the culprit for decreased overall leg strength, but they tend to respond very quickly to a little bit of extra attention in your leg workouts.

Weak hips are almost always the culprit for decreased overall leg strength, but they tend to respond very quickly to a little bit of extra attention in your leg workouts.

After completing each corrective leg circuit in this bodyweight workout, take another 30 seconds of rest and proceed to the next circuit. There are a total of 4 circuits in the workout.  For beginner or intermediate, this will take about 20 minutes. If you are going to attempt this at a more advanced level, you could opt for an additional round which would bring your total workout time up to about 45 minutes.

Here is a breakdown of the workout, and more specific instructions for each exercise are included in the section below:

BODYWEIGHT LEG WORKOUT WITH NO EQUIPMENT

BODYWEIGHT LEG CIRCUIT 1:

  1. Anterior Chain – Bodyweight Squats
  2. Posterior Chain – Bridge Marches
  3. Explosive – Bodyweight Swings
  4. Rest 30 seconds
  5. Corrective 1 – Jane Fonda’s x 30 seconds each leg
  6. Corrective 2 – 1 1/2 Rep Adductor Slides x 30 seconds each leg
  7. Rest 30 seconds

BODYWEIGHT LEG CIRCUIT 2:

  1. Anterior Chain – Bodyweight Reverse Lunges
  2. Posterior Chain – Bodyweight Sprinter Lunges
  3. Explosive – Jump Squats
  4. Rest 30 seconds
  5. Corrective 1 – 1 1/2 Jane Fonda’s x 30 seconds each leg
  6. Corrective 2 – Adductor Slides x 30 seconds each leg
  7. Rest 30 seconds

BODYWEIGHT LEG CIRCUIT 3:

  1. Anterior Chain – Bodyweight Never Ending
  2. Posterior Chain – Hamstring RDL
  3. Explosive – Glute Power RDL
  4. Rest 30 seconds
  5. Corrective 1 – Jane Fonda’s x 30 seconds each leg
  6. Corrective 2 – 1 1/2 Rep Adductor Slides x 30 seconds each leg
  7. Rest 30 seconds

BODYWEIGHT LEG CIRCUIT 4:

  1. Anterior Chain – Creeping Lunges
  2. Posterior Chain – Long Leg Bridges
  3. Explosive – Sprinter Plyo Lunges
  4. Rest 30 seconds
  5. Corrective 1 – 1 1/2 Jane Fonda’s x 30 seconds each leg
  6. Corrective 2 – Adductor Slides x 30 seconds each leg

BEST BODYWEIGHT LEGS EXERCISES

Below is a more in-depth look at the bodyweight leg exercises that make up each of the 4 circuits in this workout.

To perform this workout, follow the instructions and sequence above, noting the difference in work time and rest time depending on your level.

BODYWEIGHT SQUAT

Exercise notes: Start in squat position with feet hipwidth apart, perform a deep squat, and then return to start.

BRIDGE MARCH

bodyweight bridge march

Exercise notes: This posterior chain exercise hits glutes and hamstrings. Squeeze your glutes and push your hips up into glute bridge position with feet flat on the floor. Alternate bringing your left leg up, followed by your right leg, with knees bent. You are essentially performing an alternating single leg glute bridge.

BODYWEIGHT SWING

bodyweight swing

Exercise notes: This explosive bodyweight version of the kettlebell swing reinforces the same hip hinge pattern that makes the kettlebell version so good in the first place. Start standing with feet hipwidth apart and perform fast squat movements, engaging the glutes at the top of the movement.

JANE FONDAS

jane fonda corrective exercise

Exercise notes: This corrective exercise works weak hip adductors. Start lying on your right side and bring your left leg straight up, keeping left knee straight.  Repeat on the opposite side.

1 ½ REP ADDUCTOR SLIDES

Exercise notes: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, and begin sliding your left foot away from your body until you are in a lateral lunge position with knee bent slightly. Slide back up halfway, and then slide back down to lateral lunge position before returning to start.

BODYWEIGHT REVERSE LUNGE

bodyweight reverse lunge

Exercise notes: Perform an alternating reverse lunge, lowering your body until knees nearly touch the floor.

SPRINTER LUNGE

bodyweight sprinter lunge

Exercise notes: Starting position is with feet shoulder width apart. Bring one leg forward into lunge position, step back to standing and then lunge forward with the other leg.  Repeat, continuing to alternate sides.

JUMP SQUATS

jump squats

Exercise notes: Perform a jump squat with no dumbbells, bringing your legs parallel to the floor and landing softly on your feet with each jump.

1 ½ REP JANE FONDAS

1.5 rep jane fondas

Exercise notes: Same exercise as above but done in a 1 ½ rep fashion. 

ADDUCTOR SLIDE

adductor hip slides

Exercise notes: Same exercise as above, but this time done without the 1 ½ reps. 

BODYWEIGHT NEVER ENDING SQUAT

never ending squat

Exercise notes: For this exercise start standing with feet shoulder width apart and then slowly lower your body into squat position until legs are parallel to the floor and then slowly return to starting. The idea is never to come all the way to the top. Lower down to the bottom, maintaining tension on the legs and never giving them the brief reprieve at the top of the rep.

BODYWEIGHT HAMSTRING RDL

Exercise notes: Hinge forward at the waist rather than at the hips, putting most of the work onto the hamstrings rather than the glutes. Your upper body can be slightly lower than parallel at the bottom of the rep and you can use your fingertips touching the floor to gauge that you’re coming down far enough.

GLUTE POWER RDL

glute power rdl

Exercise notes: For this explosive exercise, focus more on hinging at the hips this time which gives us more load on the glutes themselves. 

REVERSE CREEPING LUNGE

bodyweight reverse creeping lunges

Exercise notes: For this exercise, stay down the entire time and alternate lunges from left to right. 

LONG LEG BRIDGE

Exercise notes: Lie face up with heels on the floor and squeeze the glutes with legs elevated, then return to the start.  Note that knees are not at 90 degree angles, but instead legs are extended out.

SPRINTER PLYO LUNGE

sprinter plyo lunge

Exercise notes: Perform jump lunges with upper body slightly forward. As you perform each jump lunge, touch your fingertips to the floor.

I’ve given you a complete step by step workout you can do to build leg strength at home, whether you’re a beginner, intermediate or advanced.  If you had any doubts about whether it’s possible to get a great leg workout with no equipment, those should be gone by now!

athleanx
THE HIGHLIGHT REEL:
BODYWEIGHT LEG WORKOUT

  1. It is definitely possible to build your leg muscles at home using bodyweight training, IF you employ the right exercises.
  2. I’ve provided a complete bodyweight legs workout for beginners, intermediate or advanced that you can do at home.
  3. Each lower body circuit is comprised of an anterior chain exercise, a posterior chain exercise, an explosive exercise and two corrective exercises for hips.
  4. I’ve included corrective exercises because the hips are often weak and underworked, and this can affect your overall leg strength.

Not only is it possible to train legs at home, you can build muscle mass from head to toe at home with no equipment at all.  I can show you how!  My ATHLEAN XERO program is a complete bodyweight workout system that you can do with zero equipment to build muscle and burn fat in just 6 weeks.  Build a ripped, muscular body by training like a pro athlete and eating like one too!

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