Ease back into the gym with this beginner lower body workout
Heading back to the gym and need some leg day inspiration? Remember to start simple and build yourself back up rather than going all in too soon. Don’t forget, it’s okay to not be at your pre-lockdown fitness levels – the most important thing is that you return to the gym safely and stay injury free.
So why not ease back into your workout routine and give this beginner lower body workout a try. Complete 3 to 4 sets of each exercise, and rest for 45 – 60 seconds between sets:
Exercise 1: Goblet Squat – 10 reps
Goblet Squats are a great squat variation for beginners. Holding a dumbbell at your chest helps to reinforce proper squat form by keeping your chest up, core tight and forcing your hips to sit back.
Remember to start off with a light weight and focus on form, then add weight when you’re comfortable with the movement pattern.
Exercise 2: Box Step Ups – 20 reps
Box step ups are another awesome low impact leg exercise that helps to target your quads, glutes and hamstrings while also engaging your core for stability. It is a unilateral exercise (meaning you work one side at a time) making it great to eliminate ‘dominant sides’ and promote muscular balance.
Try to think always driving from the leading leg (the one on the step) and being as light on your support leg as possible. This will help you create better force production from your quads.
Exercise 3: Squat with Pulse – 10 reps
Although a body weight squat may sound simple… add some tempo training in there and you’ve got yourself a serious glute burner.
Tempo training is a great addition to your workouts, especially if you’re a beginner. Slowing down the reps or including pulses increases the ‘time under tension’ of your muscle – making it more challenging without having to compromise form or risk adding too much weight.
Exercise 4: Calf Raises – 20 reps
Calf raises are an isolation exercise that target your calf muscles but require a lot of mind muscle connection too. They’re all about speed – and when we say speed, we mean the lack of. Slowly raise your heels and contract your calf muscle, adding an isometric hold for 2 – 4 seconds and then slowly returning to the ground.
Although it’s only a small muscle in comparison to the rest of your leg, your calf muscle plays a huge role in stability and balance and can help to improve agility when running and jumping – so it’s important to not neglect them.
Exercise 5: Glute Bridge – 10 reps
Glute bridges are a simple but effective exercise to nail down and help you get familiar with the feeling of tension in your glute and hamstring muscles. They are then ideal to build up and progress into a hip thrust where the exercise range of motion is increased, and more weight and tension can be added to get an even bigger booty burn!
A top tip when doing a glute bridge is to think about driving up through your heels to encourage better hamstring and glute muscle engagement. As many of us sit on our bum all day at desks, your quads may be more likely to try and take over and this tip can help to stop that!
If you’re looking for more beginner fitness routines, why not check out the PureGym app? It's designed to support you every step of the way with personalised training plans for your goals and handy video exercise demonstrations to help perfect your form. You can download it for free via the Google Play store or App store.