Build full-body strength with these highly effective landmine exercises. Once you’ve mastered the moves, try our landmine complex workout.

A ‘landmine’ is simply a regular Olympic-sized barbell that’s anchored to the floor at one end. Most gyms now have specialist landmine attachments, which allow you to easily slide one end of the bar into.

If your gym doesn’t have a landmine attachment, you can wedge one end of a barbell into a sturdy corner, and place a heavy dumbbell over that end to keep it from moving around.

(If you find your grip strength giving out before your target muscles do, a pair of the best lifting straps can be a very useful training aid.)

What are the benefits of landmine exercises?

“Due to the unique design and leverage factors associated with the landmine setup, landmine exercises can offer some unique benefits over more traditional dumbbell or barbell exercises,” says fitness coach Gareth Sapstead.

“The landmine setup offers a little stability, since the barbell is fixed to a unit on the floor, or attached to a rack. This stability is enough for beginners to feel more confident performing an exercise, or for someone more advanced to capitalise on it as a bodybuilding tool. When there’s greater stability, your target muscles can put in more work and muscle tension is increased. 

“The landmine setup also offers a form of variable resistance. For example, while it might be a 20kg barbell you’re using, the actual weight is closer to 7-10kg at the top of the movement, and 9-12kg at the bottom of the movement. Depending on the design of your landmine unit and the length of your barbell this will vary, but one thing that doesn’t is the fact that you’ll be lifting more weight at the bottom of the movement than the top. Thatmeans if you really want to hone in on the details of an exercise, you can use the landmine to overload a certain portion of a movement. For example, a landmine squat will be harder at the bottom and stress your glutes more, while at the top it won’t be as challenging. 

“You can also use landmine training to introduce some novelty to your workouts to keep them interesting. For example, single-leg hip thrusts using the landmine across one hip, or even standing lateral shoulder raises. If ever the 20kg barbell is too heavy, you can even swap that for a shorter barbell or even an EZ bar.”

Six of the best landmine exercises

man demonstrates power clean in landmine barbell workout to burn body fat

1. Landmine power clean

Coaching cue: “Think of your whole body like the crack of a whip,” says Gareth Sapstead. “Your lower body is generating most of the power here, with triple extension of your ankles knees and hips. Your arms finish it off.”

  • Angle a barbell into a heavy weight plate on the floor
  • Squat and grasp the bar with both hands
  • Drive up powerfully, pulling the bar up quickly
  • As the bar passes chest height, drop under it and catch it with your elbows tucked in to your body

man demonstrates front squat in landmine barbell workout to burn body fat

2. Landmine front squat

Coaching cue: “Getting a heavy loaded bar up to your chest can be a struggle,” says Sapstead. “To get around that, load your plates on the bar and rest it on top of a bench. All you’ll need to do is squat under the bar to rest it in a hockey position and then you’re good to go.”

  • After the final power clean rep, keep holding the bar in front of your chest and sink into a deep squat, keeping your knees wide apart and chest up
  • Press down through your heels and drive your hips forward to stand tall

man demonstrates landmine rotation

3. Landmine rotation

Make it harder: “To increase the challenge and train more of an anti-rotation movement pattern, you can try the squat anti-rotation,” says Halstead. “Simply squat down while holding the landmine in front. Then, without twisting your torso, ‘rainbow’ the landmine side to side. You’re trying to limit all other movement beside your arms. If this doesn’t light up your core, you’re not doing it right!”

  • Hold the bar with both hands and keep your arms straight as you rotate the bar from one side to the other in a big arc, keeping your core tight throughout
  • Pivot your knees to follow the direction of the bar
  • Alternate sides

man demonstrates landmine lunge

4. Landmine lateral lunge

Coaching cue: “Point your toe diagonally so your knee tracks over your toes,” says Mishal Dasani of Own Your Fitness.”

  • Hold the bar in front of your chest and take a big step to one side so your feet are double shoulder-width apart
  • Keeping your chest up, bend your right knee to lower into a deep side lunge, then repeat on your left side
  • Alternate sides

man demonstrates landmine single arm thruster in barbell workout to burn body fat

5. Landmine single-arm thruster

Coaching cue: “Keep your core engaged to transfer power from your lower to upper body,” says Dasani.

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold the bar with one hand at shoulder height
  • Lower into a squat, drive back up to stand and use the momentum to press the bar overhead
  • Swap sides halfway through the timed set

6. Meadows row

Coaching cue: “Raise the nearest hip to the bar higher than the other hip to target the lower lats,” says Hapstead – seen demonstrating how to do the Meadows row in the clip above.

  • Stand in a staggered stance with your front foot aligned horizontally to the landmine set-up
  • Lean your torso forward and grasp the barbell with a firm grip
  • Place your other forearm on the front leg for support
  • Initiate the movement by driving your elbow back and retracting your shoulder blade. Keep the working shoulder down
  • Pull the bar toward your back hip until your elbow is parallel to your torso
  • Slowly lower the bar until your elbow is fully extended, then reset and repeat the movement

Landmine workout: how to combine these exercises into one continuous session

“Training with a complex allows you to use your whole body during a short and intense workout,” says Dasani.

“The result will be increased lactate output – the thing that makes your muscles burn – and your body being flooded with growth hormone.” 

This combination is the perfect workout weapon to rapidly burn body fat and improve muscle growth.

  • Complete each exercise back-to-back
  • Do 30-45 secs of work for each exercise
  • Once one round is complete, rest for 60 seconds then go again