LEG DAY #5: Single Leg Deadlift

Don't neglect your body's lower half

Leg Exercises 010
Austin Cantrell, general manager of Anytime Fitness in Central Point, demonstrates the leg lift. Photo by Dustin Peters.

A lifelong athlete, Austin Cantrell, general manager of Anytime Fitness in Central Point, views fitness as a vehicle for optimizing functionality. “It begins with the core and lower body,” he says.

Cantrell adds that leg work is essential to building the kind of functional strength that supports lifelong mobility, balance and stamina.

Single-legged deadlift

  1. This move really challenges one’s balance and core strength, engaging the hamstrings and glutes.
  2. Stand on one foot with your standing leg straight and your other leg bent and pointing behind you.
  3. Lean forward, bending at the hips, and with the hand that’s opposite from your standing leg, slowly reach toward the floor in front of you, then return to a standing position.
  4. Keep your back straight, using your back leg for balance, bending only at the hips.
  5. Try this 10 times and then switch legs. When you’ve got this move down, add a light dumbbell.
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Leg workout routines

Here’s a sample schedule to work on two to three “must-do” compound exercises, combined with some cardio.

Monday—squats, step-ups and glute bridges

Wednesday—step-ups and single-legged deadlifts

Friday—squats, lunges and leg lifts

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