Dumbbell Sumo Squat: Must-Try Variation for Stronger Legs

Squats are one of the “big three” power lift exercises.

They will strengthen your core and lower body.

You can also try dumbbell sumo squat to challenge yourself further.

This variation can be a great addition to your lower-body strength training program.

What Is Sumo Squat?

This is a wide-leg straighten variation.

It requires a wider stance than usual, with the feet placed 3 to 4 feet apart and your toes pointed out.

The movement is similar to the start of a sumo match when done correctly.

There are many variations, and you can do it with or without a load, such as a dumbbell or a kettlebell.

How To Do Dumbbell Sumo Squat

  1. Grab the dumbbell with one hand and hold it in the other.
  2. Place your feet slightly outward and extend your feet.
  3. Keep your spine straight and your core tight.
  4. Bend forward about 30 degrees at the hips.
  5. Squat until your legs are parallel or at your preferred depth to reach a standing position.
  6. Next, drive your heels and midfoot into a standing position.

Dumbbell Sumo Squat Tips&Tricks

  • Before you begin to do heavier sets, warm up properly.
  • To begin with, only your body weight may be necessary, as not everyone will require additional resistance.
  • To make the exercise more difficult, you can use two weights.
  • Proper lifting posture is crucial for safety and performance. Be sure to keep the weights within your center of gravity.
  • Do not allow your knees to extend too far in front of your feet. This can cause knee discomfort.
  • Choose the most comfortable position for you.

Common Mistakes With Dumbbell Sumo Squat

As with any exercise, it is important to recognize common mistakes and learn how to avoid them.

This will help you stay injury-free and safe.

Knees Are Caving Inwards

This is a common problem with all squats and should be avoided at any cost.

This is usually caused by tight hips, weak glutes, or being too heavy to support the lifting force.

A Rounding The Back

Dumbbell Sumo Squat Works Muscles

Squats can be difficult for athletes due to a weak core, poor mobility, or being too heavy.

Focus on form, and don’t forget to keep your back straight when you move.

Torso Caving Forwards

How To Dumbbell Sumo Squat Correct

Tight hips and calves are often why squat lifters lean forward when performing squats.

Mobility work is the best treatment.

This issue can be alleviated by working on the mobility of the hips flexors.

Muscles Worked

How To Do Dumbbell Sumo Squat Correct

The dumbbell sumo squat is a complex exercise that works multiple muscles.

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Below is a brief explanation of each.


How To Perform Dumbbell Sumo Squat Correct

The glutes (or butt) and hip muscles are activated during lower body activities and exercises.

The gluteus maximus is the most important muscle in the hips and buttocks.

We want to work hard to get those sought-after steel buns.

The Gluteus Maximus’s function is to rotate and extend the thigh externally.


Dumbbell Sumo Squat Advantages

The quadriceps, or quads, is the large grouping of muscles that makes up most of your upper legs’ mass.

Quadriceps have four heads: vastus intermedialis, vastus medialis, vastus lateralis, and rectus femoris.

These help you flex your hips and extend your knees during squats.

These muscles are essential for walking, posture, and the function of the spine and pelvis and can also be used to support your pelvis.


How To Dumbbell Sumo Squat

The hamstring muscles are opposite the quads at the back of your upper leg.

It comprises three heads: the semitendinosus and semimembranosus muscles and the biceps femoris muscle.

The hamstrings are essential for hip extension, knee flexion, walking, and joint stabilization.

Strong hamstring muscles are essential for athletic performance.


Dumbbell Sumo Squat Benefits

The calves, the lower leg muscles that include the soleus and gastrocnemius, are the calves.

The gastrocnemius (more extensive of the two) is what most people associate with when it comes to the calf muscles.

It is the visible muscle below the knee.

It has two heads: medial and lateral. It joins the soleus to create the Achilles tendon at the lower end of the leg.

You will find the soleus, a large muscle located below the gastrocnemius.

Calf muscles are responsible for plantarflexing (pointing the toes downward) the foot and ankle.

They are essential for posture and athletic movements.

However, they have a different ratio of slow and fast-twitch fibers.

Most gastrocnemius’ fibers are fast-twitch, making them more suited to explosive and quick movements.

The soleus comprises more slow-twitch fibers, which makes it better suited to endurance-type activities.


Dumbbell Sumo Squat Instruction

Core muscles include abs, deep core, and spinal erectors.

These muscles are essential for spine stability and trunk movement.

For building strength and muscle, squats can be a great exercise.

Magnus Adductor

How To Perform Dumbbell Sumo Squat

The adductor magnus muscle is powerful and essential for bringing the thighs from a broader position to closer together.

It can also assist with medial and lateral rotation of the leg and extend the hip joint.

Dumbbell Sumo Squat Benefits

Dumbbell Sumo Squat Step by Step Instruction

Dumbbell sumo squat offers many benefits, such as:

Build Lower-Body Muscle

How To Do Dumbbell Sumo Squat

Increase activation for the adductors.

These run down your inside thighs.

They are more active in the squat than in the traditional stance.

Increase Core Strength

Dumbbell Sumo Squat Work Muscle

All squats are great for your core muscles.

Improve Balance, Coordination, And Proprioception

You must maintain tight control, especially when you’re squatting heavier weight.

Your body will have to work harder to control and stabilize your movements.

This makes you more aware of your body’s movements and where it is.

Enhance Functional Strength

Exercises are more relevant and functional than the squat.

Include squats in your training to improve your fitness and performance in the gym and everyday life.

The 4-3-1 Dumbbell Sumo Squat Exercise

What does the 4-3-1 signify?

It’s not an area number.

It indicates the pace at which you should exercise.

The first number indicates how long it should take to lose weight.

The second number indicates how long you should stop at the bottom or midpoint of the exercise.

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The third number is how fast you should lift weights or return to your starting position.

You will lower your weight for four seconds, pause for three seconds at the bottom and then come back up in one second.

This will mean that each rep will take at least seven seconds.

This is more than twice the time most people move in the gym.

This prolonged time under tension can be a great way of stimulating new muscle growth while also using lighter loads than usual.

Maintaining that position at the bottom is incredibly challenging, with your hips fully extended and your glutes fully stretched.

Dumbbell Sumo Squats Alternatives

You don’t have to do dumbbell sumo or squat.

It is a great lower-body exercise that we recommend.

However, many variations can be used to keep things interesting.

It may also work better for some people and may help you lose weight you wouldn’t otherwise.

#1 Barbell Sumo Squat

The dumbbell variation could be done.

We would lie if we claimed that everyone who does dumbbell variations would be interested in using a barbell.

It would also allow for more weight to be utilized and could significantly affect strength.

However, it’s an option.

You might also consider the sumo deadlift, which can help increase your strength development.

#2 Goblet Squat

The dumbbell sumo-squat is similar to the goblet squat, but the weight is kept at chest level.

Because you are standing straighter, it may be harder for your quads to work.

This brings us to the most significant benefit of this exercise: it forces thoracic extension, which can impact overall lifting posture.

#3 Dumbbell Squat

The basic dumbbell squat may be used.

It allows for a more natural and upright stance, as your sides hold dumbbells instead of in front.

This may be the best choice for heavyweights.

#4 Kettlebell Swing

The kettlebell swing can be one of the most effective exercises to increase strength, explosiveness, and power.

This is a superior posterior movement.

Even though it doesn’t involve the dumbbell sumo-squat with a kettlebell, it has a similar starting position.

You could also use the kettlebell to do sumo squats so that you might get even more benefits.

How To Incorporate The Dumbbell Sumo Squat Into Your Training Routine

You’ll reap the benefits of the dumbbell sumo squat, whether you do it as a single exercise or in conjunction with other exercises.

Many people don’t have the equipment necessary to train.

The beauty of this exercise is that you can use any weight, not just dumbbells.

Are you short on time?

It’s perfect for you.

If you want to increase the intensity of your workouts, try a superset.

This involves performing an exercise followed by dumbbell sumo squat.

There are so many possibilities.

These at-home leg exercises will help you build a more robust lower half.

If you do heavy compound movements, you should start them first when you feel the strongest. However, it all depends on your goals.

Suggestions For Sets & Reps

It is recommended that you do at least two sets of this exercise.

You can also vary your rep range.

A moderate rep range of 8-15 is ideal for muscle growth.

You should aim for 20-30 repetitions to build endurance and strength.

You don’t have to stick with a set rep range.

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Any rep range is beneficial for any goal.

For a goal, sticking to a specific rep range is the best way to reach it faster.

Are Dumbbell Sumo Squats Bad?

The short answer is no.

These squats are safe and provide many benefits.

Before you include squats in your training, consult a professional physiotherapist if you have any lower back problems or other injuries that could be affected by the squatting movement.

Are Dumbbell Sumo Squats Bad For Your Knees?

The short answer is no.

Squats are suitable for your knees, and it is wrong to assume the opposite.

Squats are a great way to build strong, mobile, and fit knee joints.

Read Also: How To Do HIIT With Bad Knees? | Best HIIT Workouts Bad Knees

Does Dumbbell Sumo Squat Build Muscle?

The short answer is yes.

The squat can be used to build muscle mass and strength.

It’s perfect for the glutes, lower back, hips, calves, and thighs.

Dumbbell Sumo Squats Will Make Your Thighs Bigger?

The short answer is yes, if you want them.

Hypertrophy is the process of allowing your muscles to grow by performing squats at a weight that’s between 3-5 and 8-12 reps.

Squats are a great way to increase your thigh size if you eat right, rest well, and allow for proper recovery.

Dumbbell Sumo Squats Are Better For Glutes Than Sumo Squats?

The short answer is yes.

Your glutes will work harder to do a regular squat because of your hips and toes’ wider stance and angle.

This leads to better gains.

Safety And Precautions

People of intermediate fitness can safely perform dumbbell sumo squats.

Talk to your doctor if you have recently suffered a lower-body or back injury before doing this exercise.

For injury prevention, keep your core tight and move slowly.

Keep your knees slightly outward to avoid rubbing the back.

Stop the exercise immediately if you feel pain.

Do eight to ten reps.

You can do more repetitions if your goal is endurance and power.

Last Words

To improve your lower body development and other aspects of fitness, the dumbbell sumo squat is an excellent exercise anyone can do.

It’s not only for endurance athletes or cardio classes.

It can be very challenging, even the most difficult, if you have enough weight and train properly.


  • Timothy P. Carnes

    Timothy P. Carnes is a certified personal trainer with a Bachelor's degree in Exercise Science from the University of Florida. With over 8 years of experience in the fitness industry, Timothy is an expert in strength and conditioning, body composition, and overall health and wellness. He also holds certifications in strength and conditioning through the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and corrective exercise through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). As an author at FitGAG, he shares his knowledge and expertise on a variety of topics, including strength training, body composition, and overall health and wellness tips. Timothy believes that consistency and discipline are the keys to achieving fitness goals, and he strives to inspire his readers to prioritize their fitness and wellness journey. Through his articles, Timothy aims to empower his readers to take control of their health, enhance their performance, and live their best lives.

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