There are many leg exercises to choose from. Even in the landmine category. Find out what benefits you can expect from landmine squats.
These benefits include more specific consequences of the weight position and trajectory of landmine squats to more general effects that are very valuable.
1. Landmine squats can grow and strengthen muscles
If you do use them in a smart training plan, landmine squats can still help you grow and strengthen, or at least improve endurance in, certain muscles.
Some of the main muscles worked with landmine squats include:
- Quadriceps (front thighs)
- Glutes (butt)
- Hamstrings (back thighs)
- Erector spinae (lower back muscles)
- Hip abductors (outer thigh muscles)
- Hip adductors (inner thigh muscles)
Depending on whether you are using a landmine squat attachment or not, you may also engage your biceps, trapezius, and deltoids to keep the barbell in position.
Compared to regular back squats, landmine squats will focus slightly more on your quadriceps and slightly less on your glutes, hamstrings, and lower back muscles due to the position of the weight.
One potential downside to keep in mind is that it can be hard to get and keep enough weight in position during landmine squats.
If this messes with your leg workouts, there are more effective landmine squat alternatives too.
2. Beginner-friendly way to learn squats
Back squats are not the most complicated exercise out there but it can take beginners a bit of time to learn to do them in an acceptable way.
Landmine squats can be helpful to get somewhat used to the squat leg movements and lowering your hips enough in an easier way.
Because the barbell is anchored to the ground, landmine squats are easier than the regular version when it comes to balance.
Something important to note is that being able to do landmine squats the right way does not mean you will also be able to do back squats the right way.
However, it can still make learning this second exercise easier.
3. Landmine squats can be easier on your back
One of the issues some people have with the regular barbell squat is that it feels uncomfortable on their backs. This is because you really have to tilt your upper body forward to prevent falling backward.
When comparing landmine squats vs back squats you will notice that you are able to keep your body a lot more upright in the landmine version.
This is because the weight is in front of your body and because the barbell goes through a somewhat fixed trajectory.
In turn, this will engage your lower back less. If you (currently) have a weak back or you are recovering from an injury this can be a nice benefit.
Something to note is that this also leads to less lower back strengthening. This is typically not the main goal of (landmine) squats but can be a nice side effect.
4. Landmine squats can help with a bigger range of motion
This next benefit is another consequence of being able to do squats with a more upright body thanks to the landmine setup.
Some people avoid going through a full squat range of motion because they are not able to tilt their upper body forward enough to stay balanced due to safety or comfort reasons.
If they went lower, they would fall backward.
With the different weight distribution of landmine squats and the upright posture that comes with that, you don’t have this issue.
This allows you to lower your hips more and go through the full squat range of motion.
A bigger range of motion is typically helpful for muscle growth and strength progress.
More specifically for (landmine) squats, this can lead to building more muscle in your quadriceps and to a small extent your glutes, hamstrings, and calves.
5. Landmine squats can be more comfortable on your shoulders
Some people find back squats uncomfortable on their shoulders and wrists due to the angle these need to be in to hold the barbell in place.
In some cases, this even leads to not being able to do the squat exercise at all.
On the other hand, landmine squats require you to hold the barbell in front of you or put a landmine squat attachment on your shoulders.
These attachments also typically have some extra padding to make things more comfortable.
Since weighted squats are such valuable additions to a workout routine, making them more comfortable or just possible can be a big benefit.
6. Landmine squats can improve mobility and flexibility
By potentially making it easier to lower your body to a larger extent, landmine squats could also help you challenge your mobility and flexibility more than other weighted variations.
In turn, this can lead to improving these fitness components around your ankles, knees, and hips.
One thing to note about this benefit is that some people will find bigger landmine squat range of motions too uncomfortable (for now).
It may take some time before your body is strong enough to do these in comfortable ways.
7. Landmine squats can improve athletic performance
The muscles landmine squats can help you grow, strengthen, and/or improve endurance in play big roles in long and fast running.
In simpler words, doing landmine squats in the right ways can help you run faster and/or longer.
This can benefit your athletic performance in a variety of sports. Sometimes to a larger extent than just training more in this sport itself.
8. Landmine squats add some variety
While the fundamental lifts are popular for good reasons, changing it up with more unusual exercises like landmine squats can sometimes be worth it too.
More specifically, if you find doing the same workouts over and over a bit one-sided and this interferes with your consistency, doing squats with a landmine setup or other equipment every once in a while can be a good idea.
The same applies if you just enjoy doing different workouts every once in a while.
Getting important health benefits from lifting is valuable but getting more enjoyment from doing landmine squats can be a positive point too.
9. Landmine squats can reduce your injury risk
Injuries are basically situations where you challenge your body too much for its current strength level.
One way to avoid these is to make your body stronger with exercises like landmine squats.
These make the muscles, joints, and tendons around your legs, hips, and to some extent shoulders stronger.
Since these injuries can mean not working out for weeks or being very uncomfortable, you can definitely say this is a benefit of landmine squats.