Change Your Mechanics for the Better With the Front Squat Single-Leg RDL

The Single-Leg RDL helps you stabilize and control your body, increasing the rate of force production and limiting imbalances while building strong powerful muscles.

Having the right exercises in your program will increase your overall performance. That's a fact. When performing any explosive movement, power and speed are necessary, especially when performing a movement that requires you to push off one leg in a certain direction. Therefore, in conjunction with Squats, Deadlifts, Cleans and Snatches, it is imperative that your single-leg training simulates your respective sport.

The Single-Leg RDL teaches you to stabilize and control your body, increasing the rate of force production and limiting imbalances while building strong powerful muscles throughout the body. In addition, the Front Squat reinforces midline stability, develops hip strength and strengthens the upper body. Additionally, the load of the Front Squat on the upper body creates greater demand to activate the anterior and posterior chain.

Therefore, the Single-Leg RDL with Front Squat Hold should be used regularly to expose specific weaknesses in the kinetic chain. Performing a Single-Leg RDL with Front Squat Hold changes all laws and leverages the mechanics, changing this grandfathered standard exercise. This variation encourages strength, power and control in the upper body while focusing on keeping the core tight and bar high, all the while creating a robust demand on a single leg.

The Single-Leg RDL with Front Squat Hold is an advanced variation so make sure you master the basic Single-Leg RDL first. Please first perform the movement with an unloaded bar to make sure your form is sufficient. As you progress, please use training plates. If you do not have training plates, please regress to the bar. Here's how to perform the movement:

  • Set up the squat rack as if you are about to perform a Front Squat.
  • Get under the bar, place it safely on your clavicles and wrap your thumbs under the bar for control. You can use straps as well.
  • It is difficult to keep your back flat because you are holding a loaded bar. As your hips sit back, extend the leg. Your leg does not have to be straight; it can be in the quadruped position. Do not go too far forward or the weight will drop.
  • Drive through your foot while pushing the hips forward to explosively stand up and return to the starting position.
  • I recommend keeping the eyes up, tightening your body and stiffening the neck to perform effectively.