When it comes to free weight exercises that train various muscle groups, the dumbbell squat and curl is one option for combining two classic exercises in one easy activity that you can do at your local gym or at home. There are many variations of the dumbbell squat, and with some research about how they work, you can choose the best ones for your overall fitness program.
Doing the Dumbbell Squat and Curl
In order to do the dumbbell squat and curl, follow these general instructions.
- Select two evenly weighted dumbbells. Start out with a lighter weight to avoid injury.
- Holding a dumbbell in each hand, stand straight up, then bend your knees a little to achieve a more flexible position, keeping excess pressure off of your spine.
- Slowly squat down toward the ground. Some experts recommend a very slow descent, where you count off three seconds.
- Hold your pose at the bottom for another second before coming back up.
- Return to your original position.
- To add the curl, bring the dumbbells up with your arms as you stand up.
Muscles Worked with the Dumbbell Squat and Curl
The dumbbell squat and curl works your hamstrings and glute muscles in your upper legs. Adding the curl means you'll also be working your biceps and upper arm muscles. Another reason the dumbbell squat and curl is so popular with some beginners is that you can get core muscle toning in, too. The abs and similar muscle groups work when you do the squat, and so doing the dumbbell squat and curl and similar activities can be a way to help you slim down while improving overall body capacity.
Avoiding Injury with the Dumbbell Squat and Curl
The best way to avoid injury with this exercise is to make sure that you can handle the weight that you're using. Try doing more repetitions with a low weight, instead of few repetitions with a high weight. Struggling with heavy weights is a common way that beginners get hurt. In some cases, it can be a good idea to have experienced trainers or other people around as spotters just in case the weight becomes too much for you.
Variations of the Dumbbell Squat and Curl
There are a number of ways to do the dumbbell squat and curl. Perhaps the standard is to do the squat with the dumbbells held down at your sides, and do the curl on the way up. Another variation is to hold the dumbbells up by your shoulders, then do the entire range of motion for the curl (down to horizontal position and back up) at the top of the curl.
If you are thinking about free weight exercises to add to your regular fitness routine, a dumbbell squat and curl can be a good option. Look for the best free weight exercises that will help you get all of your muscles stronger and lead to a leaner, healthier result.