First, what is a Split Squat? A Split Squat is similar to the Bulgarian Split Squat but without the elevation of the backwards foot.
Squats are one of the best compound exercise movements you can do (and while at home). As the name suggests, the split squat is a single leg squat variation. It uses a lot of the same muscles as the traditional squat, but places a significant amount of tension on the abdominal muscles.
This adds the overall benefit of functional strength. Unilateral exercises like this will also aid your balance.
This is similar to the Bulgarian split squat, but without the elevation of the backwards foot.
How to do Split Squats
- Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and your core engaged.
- Step one foot forward, as you would with a lunge. If you struggle with balance have a slightly wider stance. Your back heel will be off the ground.
- Keep an upright stance and slowly bend both your knees.
- Lower until your front thigh is parallel with the ground. Pause for a few seconds.
- To return to the start position, drive up through your front heel. You will remain in the lunge position throughout the reps.
- Repeat for the desired reps and repeat on the following leg.
The primary muscles used are the quadriceps and the glutes (maximus, medius and minimus). The hamstrings are also activated to a lesser degree.
To make the exercise more quad focused, keep your chest high and feet closer together. The shorter your step the more you will utilise your quads.
To make the exercise more glute focused, lean forward more and take a wider lunge. Also activating your glutes beforehand can help. This can be done with exercises like crab walks.