T Nation

Bulgarian SS Form and Nuances


So I did Bulgarian split squats w/ dbs this weekend just to mix it up in lieu of my normal back squats. I usually don't go too heavy on these since I want to maintain form and balance. (and don't want to be crippled) What struck me is everytime I do these, my weaker leg becomes the stronger leg for some reason and there's no other leg exercises that I do that happens like that. Squats, DLs, SL RDL's, lunges...you name it.

Anyone know how this leg imbalance can be reversed on BSS? Also, are my toes on my working leg suppose to be pointing slightly out 15 degrees or so?


Muscle imbalance. Your toes are sticking out due to being tense. Go see someone to get some release. Probably in your hips.

Stretch more.

Foam roll.

X walks.



In addition to a thorough warm-up like JFG mentioned, you may want to play around with your stance a bit. That could change everything from your foot placement (which I wouldn't say is "wrong" right now anyway) to where you're feeling muscular tension.

Do you feel the same issues when using no weight?

Also, reading through these articles about single leg training, and Bulgarian split squats in particular, might give some useful tips:


i guess i should've mentioned mobility and stretching isn't an issue since i stretch and acitivate before each session. When i back squat I can go below pararell so hip and ankle mobility isnt a problem and I've gotten better at bringing up the weaker leg or prevent Valgus when back squating.

Far as the single leg BSS exercise, somehow the weaker leg becomes oddly stronger and I'm going to try different stances for corrective hip hinge differences and see if that makes any difference.


Are you saying that when your weaker leg is out in front for the Bulgarians you can lift heavier weights than when your stronger leg is out in front? The Bulgarian SS isn't a true unilateral exercise so both legs are involved in the lifting. Is it possible that your strong leg is compensating hard when it's in the back?

Also, how are you sure which leg is stronger than the other? Have you tried single leg deadlifts to see if it's still the case where your weaker leg can lift heavier weights?


Yes, when my weaker leg is out in front for bSS I can lift heavier and I'm not sure if my stronger leg is compensating since it's bent back on a bench. How can it be compensating when it's in that position? I am not saying it isn't but it's hard to imagine any sort of drive occuring from that leg aside from a balancing role.

How do I know which leg is in fact stronger, I'm pretty positive one leg is stronger due to uneven hips or one leg being slighlty shorter (I haven't gotten an official diagnosis) In single leg RDL's and just about any unilateral exercise my stronger leg becomes apparent.


You stumped me. If it's not a big difference in weight, maybe it'll even up the longer you do the exercise.