How to get stronger inner thighs with sumo squats: Proper form, tips and variations

Get stronger inner thighs with sumo squats/ Image by Polina Tankilevitch - Pexels
Get stronger inner thighs with sumo squats/ Image by Polina Tankilevitch - Pexels

Our inner thighs (aka adductor muscles) are commonly under-trained and overlooked. While squats are effective for hitting the inner thighs, variations like the sumo squat are also incredibly effective to help target and train these muscles, which act as our primary hip extensors.

The sumo squat, a variation of the conventional front and back squat, is a great exercise for increasing the strength, power, and size of your inner thighs.

What is a sumo squat?

The sumo squat is a functional strength training movement. It's a variation of the traditional squat and activates different muscles. With a wide stance and your feet turned out, you can focus on the inner thighs, quads, hamstrings, glutes, calves, and more!

How to do a sumo squat?


A. Place your feet wider than shoulder-width apart, with your toes turned out at about 45 degrees.

B. Exhale as you sit your hips back and lower into a squat, clasping your hands in front of your chest, core engaged and back neutral.

C. Pause at the bottom, when your hips are in line with your knees, or when your form begins to break. The shins should be vertical, and the knees should track over (but not past) the toes.

D. To stand, exhale and press into your heels and the outer edge of your foot.

Tips for proper form

  • Make sure your knees don't cave in and your heels don't come off the floor.
  • If you find yourself going too low, put the weight back up on a rack or pause at the top.
  • If the weight is between your legs just keep your chest up to avoid leaning forward.


Mobility & Balance:

By putting more emphasis on midline stability and strength, sumo squats improve your mobility, posture, and balance.

Improved body strength

You are hitting all the major muscle groups in the lower body, thus developing full-body strength.

Great for rehabilitation

They are incredibly effective at working the adductors in the inner thighs. Additionally, they increase body stability, which is why they're widely used for both sports training and rehabilitation.


1.Weighted sumo squat


If you are accustomed to the regular sumo squats, you can add weights to mix it up and give yourself a challenge. You can do this in any way you want, but we recommend holding a kettlebell or dumbbell in front of you with both hands, so it hangs down towards the floor. This also means you'll be able to tell if you're squatting deeply enough – the weight should almost touch the ground.

2. Sumo squat jump


When you don't have weights and want to increase the difficulty of the sumo squat while also increasing your heart rate, choose the jumping version of the move. Instead of returning to standing from a squat, drive up rapidly and jump straight up. Land softly and immediately return to a squat position.

3. Sumo squat rotation


To increase core strength, incorporate a rotational movement into this exercise. Turn your torso to the right after lowering into a sumo squat position, pivoting your feet to assist with the turn, and then return to the center. Turn to the left before returning to the center on the next squat.

There are a lot of fun ways to incorporate sumo squats into your workout routine, and since they are full-body, they will help burn fat while building muscle. Give sumo squats a try and challenge yourself. No doubt, like all workouts that you love, you won't want to leave it out of your routine!

Edited by Prem Deshpande