The Split Squat and Bulgarian Split Squat are two excellent single leg variations.
The Split Squat is usually the first single leg exercise I have wrestlers start with.
It is a great way to build the proper foundation.
It also helps bring balance to the lower body. It’s common to see a noticeable difference in leg strength in wrestlers.
And it makes sense as to why that’s the case, right?
I mean, think about how much you do off of one leg when you’re on the mat.
See how an imbalance may develop?
Anyway, here’s a video on how to perform the Split Squat.
It’s not a super technical lift, but there are some important things to keep in mind.
1. Keep your core braced so that you maintain an upright posture.
2. Touch your knee to the ground on each rep. Do this very lightly. It demonstrates the strength and control necessary to progress. It also makes each rep consistent so you can track progression.
3. Start with your weak leg. You won’t know this off the bat, but you’ll figure it out. It’s more than likely your lead leg since your trail leg is the one that does most of the work on the mat.
Once you’re confident with the Split Squat, you can progress to the Bulgarian Split Squat.
Bulgarian Split Squat
The same technique points above apply to the Bulgarian Split Squat.
Obviously, the stability required for this exercise is a lot more. So, start by using bodyweight only and work up in weight from there.
The biggest thing to keep in mind is placing the top of your foot on the bench. Some people drive their toes into the bench and it affects their range of motion.
But, if you’re staying consistent with touching your knee to the ground on each rep, you’ll figure this out quickly. It is very difficult to touch your knee with your toes driven into the bench.
Finally, you can use a bar or dumbbells for both variations above. I prefer dumbbells, but I encourage you to try both and see what you feel will work best for you.