Barbell Step-Up

The barbell step-up is a multi-joint exercise that focuses on improving single-leg strength. The barbell step-up also improves balance and core strength. The step-up is a good way to build up single leg strength for single leg squats and pistol squats.


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    In a shoulder-width stance, rest a loaded barbell on the back of your shoulders with an overhand grip. Inhale, brace core and place one foot in front of you on top of a 6-12 inch box. This will be your starting position.
  2. Barbell Step-Up
    Exhale while simultaneously driving your foot into box and accelerating your hips upwards, bringing your back foot to meet your front foot on top of the box. Pause and then retract back to starting position.

Trainer’s Tips

  • Do not use the planted leg to help lift yourself onto the box.
  • Do not round the lower back as you step onto the box.
  • Gradually increase the height of the box, starting low and building higher to add challenge to the exercise.