1. Perform on a step to achieve bigger range of motion.
  2. Follow the squat with a single leg heel raise.
  3. Jump after each squat with one leg then land on both legs together. 
  4. Raise the arms above water to put more weight on your working leg.
  5. Perform half squat pulses with a single leg. 


This exercise is a great choice for beginners, or for anyone who can’t do single leg squats on land. It doesn’t require advanced skills or special equipment. The pistol squat improves leg strength, balance, and stability. It also helps make your knee stronger and less prone to injury.


How to Perform


Starting Position:


Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold your arms down by your sides in a neutral position. Keep your back straight. The water level should be above your abdomen. The lower the water level is, the more difficult is to perform pistol squats. 


Action: Lower yourself into a single-leg squat until your shoulders are submerged and extend your free leg in front of you. You can keep your arms idle or you can bring them across your body to help you stay balanced. Stand up again and bring your legs and arms back to the starting position. Repeat with your other leg. The key is to keep a controlled motion and avoid effortless bouncing. Focus on engaging your leg muscles as you squat and stand. 


Breathing: Inhale as you squat and exhale as you stand up.

Play button to reveal a gif
Underwater animation of a character squatting on one leg
Underwater view of character standing in the pool

Muscles Worked

Lower body muscles are highly engaged in this exercise, especially the front thighs. Your core muscles help control your posture and keep you balanced.

Underwater view of a character squatting on one leg
Underwater view of a character squatting on one leg
26 December 2022

Aqua Pistol Squat

Pistol Squat is great for working out your legs safely without harsh impacts. You can perform this exercise in shallow water without any equipment. The movement is suitable for all fitness levels. In this post, you will learn how to perform pistol squats and how it benefits your body. You will also discover some potential variations that will give you a more diverse and fun experience.


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