I recommend investing in some weights or hitting the gym for leg training but you can still build muscular and functional legs bodyweight style
When building muscle there's two types of muscle hypertophy, myofibrillar and sarcoplasmic hypertrophy. The former focuses more on muscle strength and density while the latter more on increasing muscle size.
The sweet spot for building strength is between 3-7 reps whereas bodybuilders tend to focus on the 8-15 rep range, lifting lighter weight and focusing more on building muscle. Any more than 15 reps will be helping towards muscle endurance.
Leg training is a very important part of any good workout plan as your legs comprise 50% of your body and hold your weight when walking, running etc. Neglecting them and working out 4 times a week on your upper body (chest, back, shoulders, arms, core) while only one day on training legs isn't going to give you a very nice, proportional and functional physique.
"Leg training is a very important part of any good workout plan as your legs comprise 50% of your body and hold your weight when walking, running etc."
But that's for another article.
Today I want to focus on the top 5 (in my opinion) leg exercises that you can do at home, by the beach, at your nearby park or in your garage without purchasing any equipment whatsoever. Bare in mind these exercises are for intermediate/advanced athletes but I'll be writing down the several adaptations for beginners as well.
1. Pistol squats
Build muscle primarily on your quads and challenges your balance a lot. Don't be afraid to go below parallel if your flexibility allows you to.
*Beginner adaptation: hold onto a poll or wall (shown in the vid).
2. Single-leg glute bridges
Will focus on strengthening your glute and hamstring muscles plus working the core a little. For a bigger range of motion place your foot on an elevated surface (like on a couch or chair).
*Beginner adaptation: glute bridge with both legs on the ground.
3. Broad jumps
Plyometrics are a big part of bodyweight training. What explosive exercises do is complement muscle building and aid in strength by increasing athleticism and promoting growth.
*There's really no beginner adaptation here.
4. Jumping lunges
Another great plyometric exercise is jumping lunges, it'll put your legs on fire trust me. Focus on small leg opening for more quad engagement. Putting your foot more forward will engage the glutes a lot as well.
*Beginner adaptation is regular lunges
5. Jump squats
Last but not least we have jump squats. Because of the impact your knees receive when landing on each rep I suggest not going ass-to-grass with these ones.
*Beginner adaptation is regular air squats
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