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Bodybuilding.com's 10 Highest-Rated Quadriceps Exercises

Our Exercise Database is home to thousands of exercises. We lined up the highest-rated quad crushers and added insider tips to make this ultimate list!

The Bodybuilding.com Exercise Database houses an incredible collection of exercises, complete with ratings, tips, and reviews. We've assembled the ten best-rated strength exercises for quadriceps from our database, along with tips from the experts. Bring back the short shorts, brothers and sisters!

Exercise 10//
(Rated 9.0)

Quick Tip: Aim for about 40% of the load (measured at max tension) to come from the bands. Depending on how the bands are attached, there may be too much slack in the line. If so, wrap them around whatever you attached them to an extra time or two, shortening the band.

A
B
Box Squat with Bands
Exercise 9//
(Rated 9.0)

Quick Tip: I recommend doing these while in-place instead of taking a step with each rep or walking. As a one-legged squat, technique is important and you don't want fatigue to make you sloppy!

A
B
Barbell Lunge
Exercise 8//
(Rated 9.3)

Quick Tip: With a narrow stance, mobility can be an issue for many people. If you can, use Olympic weightlifting shoes, which feature hard, raised heels. Alternatively, place a 1-2 inch board under your heels.

A
B
Narrow-Stance Squats
Exercise 7//
(Rated 9.3)

Quick Tip: Pause at the bottom of the motion, using your elbows to push your femurs out. This will help with your hip mobility.

A
B
Goblet Squat
Exercise 6//
(Rated 9.3)

Quick Tip: This drill teaches you how to correctly position your shoulders for front squats and cleans without rounding the thoracic spine. Start with just the bar as you work up in weight to ensure proper posture. If you can't hit rock bottom without the bar moving, work on your mobility!

A
B
"Frankenstein" Squat
Exercise 5//
(Rated 9.3)

Quick Tip: Don't crash down onto the box. Descend with control. This movement is a favorite among strength athletes, and for good reason. Just ensure that you use good technique at all times, and try not to rock forward as you come off the box.

A
B
Box Squat
Exercise 4//
(Rated 9.5)

Quick Tip: This movement not only requires strength, but great balance, flexibility, and coordination. If you can't do it yet, start without the weight or progress from goblet squats.

A
B
Kettlebell Pistol Squat
Exercise 3//
(Rated 9.5)

Quick Tip: Flexibility may sideline many of you. Work on it until your shoulders and wrists can hit the proper position. Until then, you can try the crossed-arms version or use straps.

A
B
Front Squat (Clean Grip)
Exercise 2//
(Rated 9.5)

Quick Tip: Technique is a must. Squatting doesn't hurt your knees; bad squatting hurts your knees. What's my number one coaching cue? "BUTT BACK!"

A
B
Box Squat
Exercise 1//
(Rated 9.6)

Quick Tip: If your mobility is poor, you will tend to lean forward on these. When I see this problem, I have people squat facing a wall, standing a couple inches away. This will teach you to use your hips more and prevent excessive torso lean, which shouldn't occur in a front squat.

A
B
Front Squats With Two Kettlebells

Ratings compiled September 2012.

Don't like the top 10? Login, rate your favorite quadriceps exercises, and change the list! Leave your own tips and tricks in the comments below.


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About The Author

Matt is the Training and Nutrition Specialist for Bodybuilding.com. He has studied Exercise Science and is a competitive strength athlete.

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