Medicine Ball Squat Thrusters

Shape up your legs (quads, thighs, hamstring), glutes, abs, shoulders and arms with a medicine ball squat to shoulder-press also known as a thruster. This full-body exercise is an ultimate fat melting workout that burns major calories and tones up your entire body. 

It’s a perfect all-in-one full-body workout marries the front squat movement with the overhead press.

Paired with a free weight equipment such as medicine ball, kettlebell or dumbbell(s), It increases its effectiveness at conditioning and building strength. 

If any fitness discipline is notorious in selecting only effective, fat shredding exercises to add to their routine, that would be CrossFit, and you can bet thruster makes it to their list quite often. It’s simply that effective.  

Since thrusters are two movements combined in one, it pays to know how to perform each of the moves independently. After all, without knowing how to perform a squat and shoulder press with proper form, it’s tough to get the thrusters right. 

If you are new to squats, read how to do a proper squat here to get started. You can also learn more about basic squats here.

Start with a lighter weight around 6-8 lbs before increasing the load. If you are able to perform more than ten to twelve repetitions with proper form, then you are ready for a heavier load. 

Although you can use any free weight equipment to do this squat to press exercise, if you’ve never used a medicine ball, it’s a great way to incorporate a new equipment to the mix.

One advantage of medicine balls is versatility.

Unlike dumbbells, you can slam it, pass it to a partner or throw it to a wall. They are great way to release stress while improving your power and explosiveness (qualities many athletes look for).

According to David Szymanksi PhD, Professor at Louisiana Tech University found that medicine balls used in conjunction with traditional resistance training has been proven to improve sports performance. If you are looking to improve your sports performance, trade in dumbbells for a medicine ball for your sports performance.

Exercise Table

10-123-4MediumGym or Home

How to’s:

A. Stand with the feet shoulder width-apart . Hold a medicine ball with both hands, elbows flexed at chest level. 

B. Bending the knees 90?, sit back and down into an imaginary chair. 

C. Rise up to a standing position extending the arms and pushing the medicine ball overhead. Ensure that your knees track towards your toes.

Misato Alexandre


After making healthy living a priority, Misato lost over 20 lbs in less than 90 days. Instead of weight loss being a dreading experience, living the lifestyle of health and fitness granted her more happiness and joy than ever before. She co-founded Fitwirr to make health and fitness simple for everyone and share her tips through writing evidence-based articles on nutrition, weight loss, and exercise.

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