leg workout only with dumbbells

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leg workout with dumbbells only
leg workout with dumbbells only
A leg workout with dumbbells at home with limited weights can be tough.

Dumbbell exercises for legs target the upper, lower and inner thigh muscles as well as the calf muscles (calves).

I recommend still doing the basic exercises you would do at the gym like squats, lunges and dead lifts but with slight differences to use dumbbells instead of a barbell.

As with most exercises when trying to develop definition, do 3 – 4 sets of 8 – 12 reps each. The only difference will be for dead lifts and hamstring curls where you will do 10 – 12 reps.

Browse through the various Leg workout with dumbbells below:

  • Squat
  • Reverse Lunge
  • Stiff Legged Dead Lift
  • Toe Raise
  • One Legged Toe Raise
  • Seated One Legged Toe Raise

Squat

  • Stand up and hold one dumbbell with both hands in front of your thighs.
  • Lower your body by bending your knees until they form a 90 degree angle and raise yourself back up after a short pause.
  • Keep your upper body steady throughout.
squat exercise full body workout at home
Squats Exercise

Reverse Lunge

  • Stand up and hold one dumbbell on each hand along the sides of your body, palms facing your body.
  • Place a foot back and bend your knees in order to bring down your body until your knees form 90 degree angles and raise yourself back up after a short pause.
  • Keep your upper body steady throughout.
legs workouts
Split Squat

Stiff Legged Dead Lift

  • Stand up and hold one dumbbell in each hand against the sides of your body, palms facing each other.
  • Lower the dumbbells by bending your hips forward and raise yourself back up again after a short pause.
  • Keep your back straight throughout.
Stiff Legged Dead Lift
Stiff Legged Dead Lift

Toe Raise

  • Stand up and hold one dumbbell in each hand against the sides of your body, palms facing each other.
  • Lift your heels from the ground by pushing on your toes and lower yourself back down after a short pause.
  • Keep the rest of your body still throughout.

Seated One Legged Toe Raise

  • Sit down on the bench, place the front of one of your feet on top of the step and hold a dumbbell with both hands on top of that foot’s thighs.
  • Raise the dumbbell by standing on your toes and slowly lower them back down after a short pause. Alternate feet after your set.
  • Make sure that only the calf muscles are exercising.
How to use all of these? 
Perform TWO squats, one lunge, one dead lift, and one calf raise exercise. Add to these the following two leg workout with dumbbells:

Leg Routine with dumbbells only

Leg Routine Part 1 – Squats

There are three forms that work well. Regular dumbbell squats are done with the weights held one in each hand beside you as you go down to at least a 90 degree angle in your legs. Goblet squats are much the same except the position of the weight. Hold a dumbbell in front of your upper chest with both hands when doing the squat. This is very much like a front squat. The Bulgarian split squat is a one-legged squat done with your back leg on a bench as you squat with the front leg only. Check the link for a complete description and picture.

Leg Routine Part 2 – Lunges

There are four versions. Regular lunges are described in a previous article. Reverse lunges are done by moving in the opposite direction. Stand holding a dumbbell in each hand by your sides, palms facing you. Place one foot back and lower your body until both knees form a 90 degree angle. Pause and push yourself upright.
Stationary Lunges are done in the same way as reverse lunges except your feet do not move from their positions. Keep one foot in front and one behind you and lower yourself as before. Do all reps for one leg before switching positions.
Side Lunges follow the same procedure as a regular lunge but the foot placement when stepping will be sideways.

Leg Routine Part 3 – Dead Lift

With using dumbbells, I would recommend stiff legged dead lifts. Hold a dumbbell in each hand instead of a barbell across your shoulders and perform a regular dead lift with your legs kept straight throughout the movement.

Leg Routine Part 4 – Calf Raise

You can do a basic calf raise while holding dumbbells and standing on the edge of a stairs or a 2 x 4. Do them with both legs at once or one leg at a time. The other variation is to do them while sitting and place a dumbbell on your knee when lifting.

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