Alternative to Back Squat

Bulgarian split squats can be a useful alternative to barbell squatting

In lifting circles, the barbell back squat has always been considered the king of workouts. But what if—either because of injury or an inability to get the form right—you can’t squat?

Bulgarian Split Squatting
Bulgarian split squats can be a useful alternative to barbell back squatting.

It has been discovered that training one leg at a time can be just as effective and provide an alternate path to stronger, more athletic legs.

Last year, a study in the International Journal of Exercise Science compared muscle activity in the back squat, split squat (both legs on the floor and a split stance), and Bulgarian split squat (rear foot elevated).

There was no considerable difference in the amount of muscle activated by the three workout routines, except that the Bulgarian split squat worked more of the hamstrings, which means that Bulgarian split squats can be a useful alternative to barbell squatting.

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Written by Jenny Nickelson

Jenny Nickelson has been a sports enthusiast since childhood. Because of her deep love to water, she started training swimming in early years. Today she swears on variety and does it all: from swimming, running and cycling to fitness, skiing, dancing and mountaineering.

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