Pistol Squat

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Build muscle and a well-balanced physique one limb at a time with this unilateral exercise.

Target: glutes, quads, hamstrings

  • Stand in an open space with no added resistance — just your bodyweight. Shift all your weight onto one leg, lifting the opposite foot off the floor.
  • Bend at the hip to squat down on the working leg, keeping your arms and nonworking leg extended out in front of you to counterbalance. Go down as far as you can, then press back up through your heel to the start position. Repeat for reps, then switch legs.
  • This exercise is much more difficult than it looks. If you lack the strength to go all the way down or complete more than a few reps, hold onto a stable structure with one hand to unload some of your bodyweight or do the exercise with a suspension trainer (i.e., TRX), which should make it easier.