One weight and these four moves to sculpt a more muscular lower body

Build your quads and glutes in less than 25 minutes

Woman doing single dumbbell workout
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Not everyone enjoys leg day, but sometimes you’ve just got to grit your teeth and get it done. After all, you don’t want an unbalanced body, as this will make you more prone to injuries and mobility issues and who wants that? This workout will challenge your quads and glutes in minimal time, without complicated exercises or weight machines. You’ll just need to grab either a medium to heavy weight dumbbell or a single kettlebell. And if you literally have nothing, fill a backpack instead.

If growing muscle is also one your main fitness goals then you 100% can't forfeit lower body workouts. Our lower body houses some of our largest muscle groups (hello glute maximus) and doing compound exercises that work these, like squats and deadlifts, stimulates larger releases of growth hormones, which is essential for building muscle. Therefore, if you just prioritise your upper body, you could miss out on some serious gains.

As well as putting your legs and glutes through their paces, this workout will also work your core too. It’s a circuit, so complete the four exercises listed below for 10 to 12 reps each one after the other. Then, once you’ve completed them all, rest for 30 seconds, before going in again and repeating the workout two more times. Have your timer (and gym water bottle) at the ready. Here’s your exercises:

  • Sumo squat
  • Goblet squat
  • Single leg deadlift (10 to 12 reps each side)
  • Kettlebell/dumbbell swings

Make sure you take some time after completing this to do some stretches to avoid delayed-onset muscle soreness the next day. If you have a massage gun or foam roller, we advise spending some time using these tools too, as they'll definitely help. If you're in need of another lower body session for later in the week, give this five-move dumbbell workout a go. Otherwise, if it's time to move onto your upper body, then this beginner weight bench workout a whirl instead.

Bryony Firth-Bernard
Staff Writer, Active

Bryony’s T3’s official ‘gym-bunny’ and Active Staff Writer, covering all things fitness. In her spare time, you will find her in her natural habitat - the gym - where her style of training is a hybrid of bodybuilding and powerlifting. Bryony loves writing about accessible workouts, nutrition and testing innovative fitness products that help you reach your fitness goals and take your training to the next level.