How to Do a Dumbbell Front Squat Exercise Properly

Squats improves your balance, coordination, leg strength and muscle tones. Dumbbell fornt squats is a squat variation with additional external weights. Learn 5 reasons why we love the dumbbell front squat. 

This squat variation works your muscles slightly different than the standard squat. Having more weights requires more core engagement to maintain proper form and posture. 

If you are new to squatting, start with simple body-weight squat and learn proper squat form. This will enable you to squat with proper form and build enough core strengh before working with external reistance.

5 Reasons to love the front squats:

1. It targets the front thighs muscles (quads). Holding dumbbells in front of your body places more emphasis on your quadriceps muscles, making this a great thigh thinning workout. 

2. It places less pressure on your lower back or spinal compression. This makes it an ideal exercise for both beginners and people with lower back pain. 
Women who are new to exercise often don’t have enough stomach muscles and core strength to perform exercises like barbell back squats, for those women, this dumbbell front squat is a great alternative. 

3. This squat challenges you to maintain the upright position that prevents you from leaning forward. This improves your core and spinal stability. If you happen to lean forward, you immediately lose your balance and drop the dumbbells. 

4. Less torque on the lower back. During the front squat, the torso stays nearly vertical which results in less rotational force on your lower back.  

5. It works your core. Maintaining the upright torso during the front squat exercise requires your abs and core to engage. This helps to avoid leaning forward as you lower your body down into the squat position. Keep your body in the vertical position. This makes your core work endlessly.

Benefits of Dumbbell Front Squats

Along with your thighs and butt, hamstring and calf muscles all benefit from the dumbbell front squat. These muscles are stabilizing muscles that help with your posture.

The muscles include the erector spinae located in your back, the deltoid in your shoulders, the pecs in your chest and the trapezius in your upper shoulders, neck and back. Other muscles that also get engaged are the serratus anterior muscles covering your ribs, and your abdominals and obliques. 

When it comes to exercise, proper form is the most important element to you getting the most out of your exercise. Although many adults struggle to squat correctly, squat is a natural movement often seen when you lower yourself to sit down on a chair. 

I say it’s a natural movement because we instinctively know how to squat (Just watch toddlers squat. Almost all toddlers squat perfectly without being taught how to), but we perform it incorrectly because of the predominantly sedentary lifestyle we came to adapt. This negatively affects your hip joint, mobility, and develops muscle tightness. 

So, let’s review how to do a proper squat:

Again, the reason why it’s important to squat properly is proper squats allow you to target the intended muscles and avoid any risk of injuries. 

How to do the dumbbell front squat:

  1. Grasp and hold a pair of dumbbells so palms are facing out, and rest one of the dumbbell heads on top of each of your shoulders.
  2. Brace your abs, and lower your body towards the floor by pushing your hips back and bending your knees.
  3. Pause, then slowly push yourself back to the standing position. Continue for the complete prescribed number of repetitions.


  • Keep your chest up and out 
  • The top of your thighs should be parallel to the floor or lower depends on your flexibility.
  • Keep your torso as upright as possible for entire exercise, and lower back should be naturally arched.
  • Do not allow your elbows to drop down as you lower body into the squat.
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