frog squat exercise

Frog Squat: How to (Video), Variations & More

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I first came across the frog squat while I was on a business trip in another city. I was looking for an exercise that would help me work out my lower body without me leaving my room.

Frog squats are the perfect alternative to kneeling squats. If as a kid you participated in any frog games, you already know the stance, plus you know you are about to have fun while burning calories. If you’re new to this squat variation, here is the lowdown on frog squats.

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What Is the Frog Squat?

Most people grew up loving the frog jumping game, and if you’re one of those people, you’ll have happy thoughts doing this squat. Thankfully, there won’t be any jumping in this exercise. Well, in the beginning at least.

For a beginner, the frog squat involves moving up and down, mimicking a frog’s motion. This exercise targets different muscles on your lower body, but mostly the quads. 

Before anything else, it is important to keep in mind that when doing any type of squat, you must be alert and focused on the exercise to insure that you won’t suffer from instability issues. Squats rely on your body weight for stability, so it’s crucial to have presence of mind.

Step by Step: How to Do the Frog Squat

Now, there are two ways you can do frog squats.

Option 1

The first one is beginner-friendly:

Step #1

Start with your feet apart, wider than your shoulder width.

Step #2

Place your hands in front (around your waist/groin area).

Step #3

Now, move up and down like a frog. No jumping. Remember to breathe.

Step #4

Repeat the exercise for 3 – 5 sets, 15 reps each with 40 seconds break in between.

Option 2

Step #1

Start with your feet apart at shoulder width. Turn your toes slightly outwards.

Step #2

Slowly lower your body to a squatting position.

Step #3

Now move your hips up then back down to a squatting stance.

Step #4

Repeat the exercise for 2 – 4 sets, 12 – 15 reps per set. 

The frog squat is great at burning calories on the lower body. Here are the muscles worked by frog squats.

Frog Squats Muscles Worked

  • Quads

The quad muscle is located at the front of your thigh and is made up of the rectus femoris, vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, and vastus intermedius.

These muscles work together to make it possible for you to do physical activities like running and walking. When doing your frog squats, you’re stretching and toning this muscle, making it stronger. Also be warned that this muscle is prone to injury, so­ make sure to read the pointers below to protect it.

  • Hamstrings

These are the muscles at the back of your thigh, which are called semitendinosus, biceps femoris, semimembranosus. These muscles are responsible for knee and hip movements, such as walking, kneeling, and squatting.

Frog squats have some carry-over benefits to the hamstrings, because you’ll work these muscles as you work your quads.

  • Glutes

frog squat muscles worked

Your butt will also get some workout but not enough to give it a rounder, firmer shape. For that goal, we recommend you add kneeling squats to your routine.

  • Adductors

These are your inner thigh muscles, which most people complain about because they’re hard to tone. Fortunately, frog squats will work these muscles, and if you want to target them specifically, we recommend that you add lateral squats variation to your workouts.

Squatting Tips

To make sure that you perform the frog squat safely, keep these tips in mind:

  1. If you’re doing Option 1 of the basic frog squat, make sure that your back is straight and aligned with your neck. Fix your gaze to the front. Do not look down.
  2. Stand with your feet farther apart than your shoulder width. When squatting, your knees should align with the ankles. Do not drive your knees forward.
  3. For Option 2, your back should be flat, not hunched.
  4. Look straight ahead.
  5. Make sure your movements are coordinated.

Once your body becomes accustomed to the basic routine, it’s time to challenge yourself and amp your game.

Read Next: Best sissy squat machine for quads

Progression: 3 Variations to Amp Your Workout

1. Frog squats with dumbbells

When doing the frog squat with dumbbell, you should follow Option 1 of the basic squat.

Step #1

Start with the right stance with your feet wider apart than shoulder width.

Step #2

Hold a dumbbell between your hands. You can start with a lightweight dumbbell then add more weight as you progress.

Step #3

Move up and down, mimicking a frog’s movement. Do 3 sets, 10 reps per set.

With this exercise, you’ll be working your upper body as well.

2. Frog squat with barbell

Now, if you are a body-builder looking to take your frog squats to another level, add a barbell to the routine.

Step #1

Pick the barbell from the squat rack and let it rest across your upper back.

Step #2

Step at least one foot from the barbell.

Step #3

Follow the basic movements; feet apart, then up and down.

Step #4

Do a few sets of this workout.

We recommend you work with a trainer to help you with the weights if need be.

3. Frog jump plank

Our last frog squat variation is the frog jump plank routine.

Step #1

Start in a push-up position.

Step #2

Hop into a squat position. Your feet should be outside of your hands.

Step #3

Then jump back to the push-up position.

Step #4

You can intensify this variation by moving to a standing position before going back to the push-up stance.

Frog Squat Benefits

  • Crushes calories

If you’ve got weight to lose, squats are the perfect exercise. Squats with its various types not only crush calories but also help tone different muscles.

I also love that the frog squat is a compound exercise that works out different types of muscles at the same time. Also, it helps tone those hard-to-reach muscles such as adductors.

  • Improves stability

As we’ve stated earlier, quads are very susceptible to injury. Most of these injuries are a result of wrong form while exercising, especially when lifting weights.

To avoid straining your muscles, you need to build endurance, and one way to do that is to work out your quad muscles. The stronger your quads, the more stable you become when lifting weights.

  • Can be done anywhere

Earlier, I’ve told you how I discovered this exercise while away for business. This is the beauty of squat exercises. You can do the frog squat anywhere anytime, which means you’ll have no excuse for missing a routine.

Read Next: Squat machine types 

Frog Squat Alternative

Now, if after some time you want to mix things a little, the pistol squat is a great alternative to the frog squat.

Pistol Squat: How to

Step #1

Start with 5 – 10 reps of the normal squat to warm up your legs.

Step #2

Stand on the left foot with the right leg stretched to the front.

Step #3

Then lower your body to a squat position and hold the stance for a few seconds.

Step #4

Stand and switch to the other foot.