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Mastering the Heel Elevated Goblet Squat: 6 Big Benefits, Form & Muscles Worked!

heel elevated goblet squat

Are you tired of the same old leg day routine? Ready to spice things up and elevate your fitness game? Look no further! In this article, we’re diving into the heel elevated goblet squat – a powerful exercise that’s about to become your new best friend at the gym.

Get ready to conquer gravity, one squat at a time, and transform your leg day into a dynamic and effective workout.

What is a Heel Elevated Goblet Squat?

The heels-elevated goblet squat is not your average exercise; it’s a game-changer. This variation of the traditional goblet squat involves lifting your heels off the ground by placing them on a small platform or weight plates.

In this article, we’ll explore how this unique modification can enhance your ankle mobility, increase your squat range of motion, target your quadriceps more effectively and elevated goblet squat form.

Heel Elevated Goblet Squat Muscles Worked:

The heel-elevated goblet squat primarily targets the following muscle groups:

  1. Quadriceps:
    • The front thigh muscles (rectus femoris, vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, and vastus intermedius) are heavily engaged, especially with the elevated heels.
  2. Hamstrings:
    • While the emphasis is on the quads, the hamstrings (biceps femoris, semimembranosus, and semitendinosus) are also activated to a lesser extent.
  3. Gluteus Maximus:
    • The glutes play a role in hip extension, contributing to overall lower body strength.
  4. Abductors and Adductors:
    • Muscles on the outside (abductors) and inside (adductors) of the thighs help stabilize the hips during the squat.
  5. Core Muscles:
    • The rectus abdominis, obliques, transverse abdominis, and erector spinae work together to stabilize the lumbar spine, requiring core engagement throughout the movement.

How to do Heel Elevated Goblet Squat:

heel elevated goblet squat

Master the heel elevated goblet squat form with precision using this concise step-by-step guide. From equipment setup to flawless execution, we’ve got you covered. Perfect your form and elevate your workout routine, whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned fitness enthusiast.

Equipment You’ll Need:

  • Dumbbell or kettlebell (for the goblet position)
  • A stable platform or weight plates to elevate your heels (optional)

Step-By-Step Guide:

  1. Set up your equipment: Place a stable platform or weight plates under your heels. You can use something about 1-2 inches high. Ensure that the surface is stable and can support your weight.
  2. Select the weight: Choose an appropriate dumbbell or kettlebell weight for your fitness level. Beginners may start with a lighter weight, while more advanced individuals can go heavier.
  3. Proper body positioning: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart or slightly wider. Your toes should be pointing slightly outward. Hold the dumbbell or kettlebell close to your chest with both hands, keeping your elbows tucked in.
  4. Elevate your heels: Position your heels on the elevated surface so that your toes are on the ground, and your heels are lifted. This is the key feature of the heels-elevated squat.
  5. Initiate the squat: Begin the squat by pushing your hips back and bending your knees. Keep your chest up, back straight, and core engaged throughout the movement. The elevated heels will allow you to lean forward slightly without losing balance.
  6. Descend: Lower your body down into a squat position, ensuring that your knees are tracking in line with your toes. Go as low as your mobility allows while maintaining good form. Ideally, try to get your thighs parallel to the ground or lower.
  7. Ascend: Push through your heels and drive your hips forward to stand back up. Keep your core tight and maintain the elevated heel position throughout the movement.
  8. Complete the repetition: Return to the starting position, standing upright with the dumbbell or kettlebell close to your chest. This completes one repetition.
  9. Perform the desired number of reps: Depending on your fitness goals and ability, perform 3-4 sets of 8-12 repetitions.

Remember to focus on controlled movements, maintain proper form, and listen to your body. If you experience any discomfort or pain, adjust the weight or modify the range of motion. As with any exercise, it’s essential to start with a weight that challenges you but allows for proper technique.

Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced fitness enthusiast, this exercise is adaptable to various fitness levels. Follow the guide, and you’ll be confidently conquering the heels-elevated goblet squat in no time.

Benefits of Heel-Elevated Goblet Squat:

Discover the incredible advantages of incorporating the heels-elevated goblet squat into your workout routine. From increased ankle mobility and enhanced quadriceps activation to core engagement and functional strength, this exercise offers a myriad of benefits.

We’ll explore how it can prevent plateaus, keep your workouts interesting, and provide a unique angle to target your muscles.

  1. Increased Ankle Mobility: Elevating the heels in this squat variation can contribute to improved ankle flexibility and mobility. This is particularly advantageous for individuals with limited ankle mobility, allowing them to perform deep squats with proper form.
  2. Enhanced Quadriceps Activation: The heels-elevated position shifts the emphasis onto the quadriceps, specifically targeting the front thigh muscles. This focus on the quadriceps makes it an ideal exercise for those looking to isolate and develop these muscles.
  3. Core Activation: Similar to traditional squats, the goblet squat engages the core to stabilize the spine and maintain proper posture. The added challenge of the heel-elevated position enhances the need for core activation, contributing to overall core strength.
  4. Variation and Muscle Confusion: Incorporating the heels-elevated goblet squat into your workout routine introduces variety and muscle confusion. This helps prevent plateaus, keeps workouts interesting, and allows for targeting muscles from different angles, promoting continuous growth and improvement.
  5. Functional Strength: The exercise translates well to everyday activities involving squatting, such as picking up objects from the ground. Improved ankle mobility and balance gained from the heel-elevated position can prove beneficial in real-life scenarios.
  6. Engagement of Glutes: While the primary emphasis is on the quadriceps, the heels-elevated goblet squat still involves the glutes. This engagement of the glutes is crucial for hip extension and overall lower-body strength, providing a holistic lower-body workout.

These benefits collectively make the heels-elevated goblet squat a versatile and effective exercise for individuals looking to enhance their lower body strength, mobility, and overall fitness.

Mastering the Heels-Elevated Goblet Squat:

Tips and Tricks: Delve deeper into the details of the heels-elevated goblet squat, including common mistakes to avoid, variations to try, and alternative exercises. Learn how to perform the exercise properly, understand the optimal sets and reps, and explore different variations like the front squat, Zercher squat, and back squat with elevated heels. We’ve got the insights you need to maximize your gains.

Heels-Elevated Goblet Squat Sets and Reps:

Tailor your heels-elevated goblet squat workout with specific sets and reps recommendations. Whether you’re a beginner looking to start with light weights and a slow tempo or aiming for muscle growth with higher reps and shorter rest times, we’ve got the guidelines to suit your fitness goals.

Common Heels-Elevated Goblet Squat Mistakes:

Avoid pitfalls during your workout by understanding common mistakes associated with the heels-elevated goblet squat. From letting your knees travel improperly to upper back rounding and foot placement issues, we’ll guide you on the right path to ensure a safe and effective exercise routine.

Heels-Elevated Goblet Squat Alternatives and Variations:

Explore alternatives and variations to keep your leg workouts diverse and engaging. Whether you prefer narrow stance Smith machine squats, classic sissy squats, or the hack squat machine, we’ve outlined options to complement your fitness routine and target different aspects of your lower body.

  1. Front Squats: Hold a barbell in front of your body with your palms facing up. This variation places more emphasis on the quads and engages the core while providing a different challenge to your squatting motion.
  2. Zercher Squats: In this squat variation, cradle a barbell in the crooks of your elbows. Zercher squats target the quadriceps and involve a more upright torso position, challenging your core and upper back muscles.
  3. Back Squats with Heel Elevation: Apply the heel elevation concept to traditional back squats. Place a stable platform or weight plates under your heels, similar to the setup for the goblet squat. This modification can help maintain an upright posture during the back squat.
  4. Hack Squats: Utilize a hack squat machine to target your quads, hamstrings, and glutes. The machine provides stability while still allowing you to focus on the lower body muscles, making it a suitable alternative for those who prefer machine-based exercises.
  5. Narrow Stance Smith Machine Squats: Using a Smith machine, perform squats with a narrow stance. This variation emphasizes the quadriceps and can be a safer option for individuals who need additional support or have balance concerns.
  6. Sissy Squats: This bodyweight exercise primarily targets the quads and engages the core. Sissy squats involve leaning back while keeping your heels on the ground, creating a unique challenge for your lower body.
  7. Goblet Squats (Traditional): If you’re looking for a change but still enjoy the goblet squat, try performing it without heel elevation. This will maintain the focus on the quads and core but provide a different feel to the exercise.
  8. Step-Ups: Using a bench or step, perform step-ups to engage the quads, hamstrings, and glutes. This exercise also incorporates balance and stability, making it a functional alternative.

Remember to choose exercises based on your fitness goals, preferences, and any existing health considerations. Incorporating a variety of movements can help keep your workouts interesting and target muscles from different angles.


Take your leg day to new heights with the heels-elevated goblet squat. From mastering the technique to reaping the benefits and exploring variations, this article is your ultimate guide to incorporating this quad-boosting game-changer into your fitness repertoire. Elevate your squats, elevate your gains!

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